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Southeastern is the product of a partnership formed between two high school students, John Cooper and Chris Tacia, in 1996. The two began a business splitting firewood and selling it by the truckload to local folks around Sanford, NC. Later they partnered with another group and expanded their business into Chapel Hill and Cary. Proceeds from selling firewood became the seed money for a small development in Western Harnett County. That development eventually led to the formation of Southeastern Properties and Development Company. In its first years Southeastern had three main functions; it was a development company, a construction company and a real estate company. As our business grew, we eventually were split into two different companies with Century 21 Southern Realty handling all of our real estate business, leaving Southeastern Properties and Development Company to focus solely on construction.

In the past few years, Southeastern has completed many million dollars’ worth of construction projects in Central North Carolina and Southern Virginia. Our projects range from $25,000 renovations and $500,000 fit-ups, to $1,000,000+ new home and office construction. Our residential clients include many dozens of valued home owners and our commercial clients include companies such as Enviva Pellets, Centro Restaurant, Bida Manda Laotian Restaurant, Belk Stores, Ferguson Enterprises, the Sanford Area Association of Realtors, McCurry Enterprises, Coldwell Banker, S.O.T.S., Carolina Trace Country Club and Airgas National Welders.

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THE EXECUTIVE TEAM

John Cooper

President

John Cooper graduated Cum Laude with a B.S. in Construction Engineering and Management from North Carolina State University.

John’s father is a master trim carpenter; John spent most of his summers growing up on job sites working and apprenticing. Many of the subcontractors that he met as a child work for Southeastern today. His background as a subcontractor himself and his long working relationship with many of our top subcontractors creates a strong sense of loyalty among our crews which translates into a higher quality product for our clients.

Southeastern’s first projects were small; we started with projects such as decks and bathroom/kitchen remodels.  Most of these projects were completed by John himself.  In those days he was a framer, drywaller, painter, trim carpenter, trash man, designer, etc…  whatever the job required he did.  While Southeastern was in its infancy John also worked for two other construction firms:  Crowder Construction and Brasfield & Gorrie.  At Crowder, he worked on a project management team overseeing the construction/upgrade of a waste water treatment plant in Johnston County, NC and a water treatment plant in Orange County, NC.  While at Brasfield & Gorrie, he estimated commercial and healthcare construction projects ranging from $250,000 interior up fits, to a $23 million surgical expansion and a $50 million shopping center.

Today Southeastern completes construction projects all over central North Carolina and Southern Virginia; our portfolio is varied and includes office buildings, luxury homes, land development, restaurants, industrial work, government buildings and up fits.  John has overseen every aspect of our company as it has grown from those first small projects to the multimillion dollar construction company it is today.  He has extensive knowledge and first-hand experience in all aspects of construction and customer relations.

Chris Tacia

Vice President

Chris graduated Magna Cum Laude with a degree in Business Administration in Accounting from Campbell University.  Chris cofounded Southeastern and is its Executive Vice President.

Chris spends most his time running Southeastern’s sister companies:  Century 21 Southern Realty, Southern Property Management and American South.  He is a proven negotiator, problem solver and deal closer and is always ready to step in should his skills be needed.

Chris has over 20 years’ experience in real estate sales and development. He is consistently ranked in the top ten percent of all real estate agents in a multi-county area in the central part of North Carolina.  He is very active the Realtor Association and has served multiple terms as president for the Lee County Association.  He successfully bid and won the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s listing contract for approximately 15% of North Carolina. He Co-Founded Coldwell Banker Southeastern Properties and oversaw the company’s 2010 merger with its two largest competitors, resulting in the formation of Century 21 Southern Realty.  Century 21 Southern Realty was the second highest Century 21 sales office by volume in the state of North Carolina before it was it was purchased and merged into ERA Strother Real Estate in 2016.

Gabrielle Joseph

Vice President of Operations

Gabrielle became Southeastern’s Vice President of Operations in September of 2015.  She earned a bachelor’s degree in business management and economics from SUNY Empire State College, as well as studied construction management and law at New York University.  Gabrielle oversees all aspects of our construction projects, as well as general operations of the company.  She ensures that all jobs are running smoothly, on time, within budget and that the highest quality standards are being met.

Prior to Southeastern, Gabrielle has worked for companies such as Struever Bros. Eccles & Rouse, Tonic Construction and Savvy Homes.   Her project portfolio ranges from project management on the American Tobacco Campus in Durham, the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the American Museum of Natural History in NY to large custom residential construction projects.