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Tommy Ahlquist leaves Gardner Company for new venture

Tommy Ahlquist

Developer and former gubernatorial candidate Tommy Ahlquist has left his position as COO at the Gardner Company to create a new company with four other people, led by CEO Cortney Liddiard of Ball Ventures in Idaho Falls.

Ahlquist said June 22 that the new company, Ball Ventures Ahlquist LLC or BVA, will focus on commercial real estate such a multifamily, medical and office buildings. Ball Ventures has been working as a majority owner on the latest Boise Gardner Company development, the large mixed-use Pioneer Crossing project near downtown Boise. Ahlquist said that partnership will continue.

Ahlquist, who is well known in the Treasure Valley for building the 18-story Eighth and Main tower in downtown Boise in 2014, a bold move that jump-started construction downtown. He said his change of direction had nothing to do with his recent loss in the Republican gubernatorial primary.

“Nothing at all, except for the election was a big life event for me, and I made a lot of great relationships doing that, and once the election was over, I thought about ‘OK, where do I settle back in, and how do I maximize some of the relationships and ways I want to put myself to work over the next decades?'” said Ahlquist, 50. “This allows me to do that.”

Ryan Cleverley, Mark Cleverley, Holt Haga and Tom Ahlquist Sr. and Liddiard are Tommy Ahlquist’s new partners. Tommy Ahlquist said the new company will work on projects around the West, with its primary headquarters in the Treasure Valley.

“The people from Ball Ventures aren’t moving,” he said. “We’ll probably add some new support staff here.”

He added that BVA has a friendly relationship with the Gardner Company.

Tommy Ahlquist’s last day at Gardner was June 20, and BVA immediately filed its paperwork to create the new company, he said.



About Anne Wallace Allen

Anne Wallace Allen is the editor of the Idaho Business Review.