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The real deal: Little Rock's John Flake made the right turn at a career crossroad.

John Flake made a decision in 1973 that would shape not only his career but also the central Arkansas real estate market.

He decided to get out of banking.

Flake joined Little Rock's Commercial National Bank in 1972 as an officer in the credit department. A year later, Flake decided he was cut out for something else.

Flake, 43, is chairman of the Little Rock commercial real estate firm Flake Tabor Tucker Wells & Kelley Inc.

"I started the same year as |First Commercial Corp. Chairman~ Barnett Grace," Flake says. "He was in the trust department."

In 1973, Flake returned to the field that he knew best -- real estate.

"My career path was oriented toward real estate," he admits.

Flake traces his roots in real estate to his father, who opened a residential real estate agency, Walthour-Flake Co., in Little Rock in 1935.

A Family Affair

Flake's brother, Dickson, also is in the real estate business. The brothers worked together at one time at Barnes Quinn Flake & Anderson Inc. Dickson Flake remains at that firm as a partner. But John Flake opted to strike out on his own, forming his current firm in October 1979.

"It was strictly an entrepreneurial thing," Flake says. "It was a natural decision to start a business and try to make it successful. I've always enjoyed the real estate business, and I guess I always will."

One of Flake's proudest accomplishments is the 40-story TCBY Tower in downtown Little Rock, the building in which his firm is based.

Flake says his success is a direct result of his association with four partners -- Rett Tucker, Hank Kelley, Ron Tabor and George Wells.

"I'm lucky to be able to associate with four partners who are, in their respective |areas of expertise~, the most talented in this region," Flake says.
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Title Annotation:Arkansas Business of the Year: 1991
Author:Taylor, Tim
Publication:Arkansas Business
Article Type:Company Profile
Date:Jan 27, 1992
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