Biography

John E. Cruz concentrates his practice primarily on retail and office leasing. With an appreciation for the interests of both sides of a negotiation, John represents landlords and tenants. He has extensive experience in the legal and operational issues related to owning, financing, leasing, managing, and operating office buildings. Having spent several years as a manager and contracts negotiator with an international communications company, John also understands the business interests, processes, and motivations involved in negotiating agreements. In addition to leasing, he represents lenders, owners, developers, brokers, and tenants in a wide variety of commercial real estate matters.

Practice Areas

Education

  • Washburn University School of Law (J.D., 1998)
  • University of Kansas (B.A., 1994)

Legal Background

  • Contracts manager, Sprint Spectrum L.P. (Sprint PCS) (2001-2002)
  • Associate, Lewis Rice LLC (2000-2001)
  • Manager (corporate agreements), Sprint Corporate (1998-2000)
  • Contract negotiator, Sprint Communications, L.P. (1998)

Professional Affiliations

  • International Council of Shopping Centers
  • Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association, Real Estate Law Section
  • Chapter member, Kansas City CCIM
  • Member, Kansas City Chapter, BOMA

Admissions

  • Missouri Bar
  • Kansas Bar

Honors & Awards

  • The Best Lawyers in America® for 2016-2022
  • Ranked as a Leading Individual Real Estate Attorney (Missouri-Kansas City & Surrounds) in the Chambers USA Guide (2006-present). Currently ranked as Tier 2.
  • Missouri & Kansas Rising Stars® 2009-2011
  • Nominated as a Rising Star in 2003 by the Georgetown University Law School Advanced Commercial Leasing Institute

Representative Transactions

  • Represented a landlord in negotiating a major downtown Kansas City office lease of more than 270,000 square feet
  • Represented a major office building developer in refinancing multiple office buildings with a series of new loans in excess of $200,000,000
  • Negotiated leases and long-term extensions and expansions of over three million square feet of office space
  • Negotiated numerous leases for regional and national retailers and corporate office tenants
Firm Highlights
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Lauren R. Carey Creates New Blog for Social Media Influencers

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Neal F. Perryman Named to Missouri’s POWER List in Employment Law by Missouri Lawyers Media

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FTC Reverses Course on Treatment of Debt Payoff Under HSR Act

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OSHA’s New Guidance Regarding Indoor Mask Wearing, COVID-19 Vaccination Mandates, Regular Testing of Unvaccinated Workers, and More

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Diversity & Inclusion

Golf Foundation of Missouri Awards First Larry L. Deskins, Sr. Scholarship

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Lewis Rice Recognized as Top M&A Firm by BTI Consulting Group

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Michael R. Thiessen Recognized as Pro Bono Spotlight by KCMBF for August

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Supreme Court Limits Ability to Compel Access to Private Property Without Compensation

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Four Lewis Rice Attorneys Named 2022 “Lawyer of the Year” by Best Lawyers

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Matthew J. Haas Offers Commentary for Inside P&C Article on Business Interruption Insurance and COVID-19

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Brian P. Pezza Quoted in SHRM Articles on Employee Vaccination Status Disclosure and Employer Vaccination Policies

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Michael D. Mulligan Publishes Article in ACTEC Law Journal Comparing Sales to an Intentionally Defective Irrevocable Trust and a to Beneficiary Intentionally Defective Irrevocable Trust

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Property Owners Can Push the Issue Under Illinois Mechanic’s Lien Law

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Lewis Rice Wins $1.5 Million in Compensation for Covington Landowners

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Missouri Now Requires Employers to Provide Leave and Accommodations for Victims of Domestic and Sexual Violence

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David W. Sweeney Represents Advantes Group in $7.2 Million Apartment Project

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John C. Bodnar Named BTI M&A Client Service All-Star

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61 Lewis Rice Attorneys Named Best Lawyers for 2022, 16 Named Ones to Watch

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