Our Management Team

Deona Thomas

Deona Thomas is the President/CEO of 5T Management where she brings her extensive management, marketing, financial and community relations experience. She is a licensed Managing Real Estate Broker with an emphasis on property management with over 25 years of experience. The properties she owns/manages provide quality, affordable housing to Chicago’s low-mid income families. Prior to working at 5T, she was the owner of several fast food restaurants in the Chicagoland area (Kenny’s Ribs & Chicken). She and her husband started buying real estate when they began to provide housing to her employees who could not find decent, safe, affordable housing. Those initial real estate investments morphed into a thriving, full service property management business – 5T Management in which she manages her own portfolio of properties as well as the portfolios of other owners, local banks and national banks. 5T Management allows her to share her own property ownership experience with other property owners to assist them in the achievement of their property management goals. Deona has a passion for developing high performance teams and making an impact in the communities that 5T serves. She also enjoys mentoring other female entrepreneurs on how to navigate the entrepreneurial lifestyle successfully. As Director of Community Affairs for Mount Sinai Hospital Medical Center she was responsible for board governance, was the liaison between the hospital and community organizations and the link between the President’s Office and hospital’s management team. She also oversaw the administration of 13 federally qualified health centres affiliated with the hospital. She holds a BA in Biological Sciences from Hampton University and a MPH from the University of Michigan.

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Cortnee Griffith
Property Manager

Cortnee, Chicago Native with over 3 years of experience in the property management field. He has managed portfolios as large as 500 units. He has worked for some of the city’s largest property management firms and brings that knowledge and training with him to 5T Management. He prides himself on producing results within troubled areas and increasing the quality of service for all his residents. He received his formal education from Illinois State University in Business Administration and Real Estate Brokers education from Chicago Real Estate School. During his spare time he enjoys exploring his creative side with various art projects and shooting photography.

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Linda Williams
Compliance Associate

Linda Williams, has joined the 5T team with over 18 years of experience in housing with varying roles from Desk Monitor, to Development Clerk, followed by Administrative Assistant and Recertification Clerk. Each of the aforementioned roles afforded Linda the opportunity to grow her skillset and become more proficient in reviewing files and reports which lead to her passion for auditing. Her current role as Compliance Specialist is where Linda’s appetite is quenched; with a keen eye for detail she reviews resident files to ensure all eyes are dotted and “t’s” are crossed. Linda recently received a certification in Medical Administrative Assistant from the Stratford Career Institute. Linda, looks forward to earning her (COS) Certify Occupancy Specialist and a Tax Credit License. She is a very friendly person, who enjoys to meeting new people and loves to learn. When she is not working, Linda enjoys attending and watching sports, reading and doing puzzles as well as all genres of music.

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Candice Jones
Accounting Associate

Candice began her career in accounting back in 2015 as an AP/AR clerk while still in school to finish up her degree. She received my bachelors in accounting in 2017 from Chicago State University. After relocating to the Springfield area shes now ecstatic to be back in my hometown of Chicago and to be back working as a property accountant. She has a passion for real estate and plan to sit for her brokerage exam sometime in August, 2020. Being able to blend my talents in accounting with the knowledge I’m gaining in real estate makes 5T Management the perfect place for continuing my career. I’m a fast learner and love being able to engage and give back to the community. When I’m not working I love spending time with family and friends.

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Steve Thomas
Director of Operations

Steve Thomas is a licensed General Contractor and real estate developer with over 25 years of experience. He is the President of 5T Construction. 5T Construction offers a full range of services specifically tailored to meet the unique requirements of each client. 5T Construction has completed well over $8,000,000 in construction projects. The projects range from new construction, gut rehabs, renovations of single family and multi-unit dwellings to building out commercial office space. Prior to becoming a real estate developer, he was a restaurant owner and operator. Steve has planned, designed and built in excess of 20 restaurants in Chicago, Indiana and Michigan. He has well over 17 years of experience in the restaurant industry as well as in the construction management and real estate industries. Based on Steve’s unique business acumen and experiences, he can relate to the needs of his clients and is committed to their success. His experience enables him to treat every project as if it were his own. Steve holds a BS in Computer Systems Engineering from Howard University.

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Christel Perrin
Senior Accountant

Christel Perrin has over 10 years of accounting experience in the real estate industry. She prides herself on being an educator, mentor and accountant with the ability to transform lives and businesses. She enjoys discovering new technological advances and has a proven ability to increase efficiencies by 30-50%. She is known for her ability to cultivate healthy business relationships with vendors. She strives to provide quality internal and external service. Her passion for the field and industry exudes through her work. She received her Associates in Applied Science with a concentration in Accounting from Robert Morris University in 1996. She later decided education was essential to her journey to becoming a better individual and professional. She went back to Robert Morris University and received her Bachelors of Business Administration with a concentration in Accounting. She has taken several graduate courses to keep informed with the latest technical and legal changes in the accounting field. She is currently on track to take the fraud examination certification in August 2018.

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Terrie Hodges
Accounts Receivables\Payable

Terrie is an innovator, who enjoys working with numbers. Focusing on her love of mathematics she earned an Associates’ degree in Accounting from North Western Business College. Her professional career in accounting began 3 years ago as an Accounts Receivable Clerk. By applying her high-quality business practices in our rapidly growing environment, Terrie has proven to be a great asset to 5T. Terrie will be furthering her education at Morris University in 2019, to earn a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and Accounting.

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Tomeika Newton
Junior Accountant

Tomeika is a Mississippi native with over 5 years of experience working in the property management industry. She is a graduate of “THEE” Jackson State University with a Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting. She is also a graduate of Keller Graduate School of Management in which she earned her master’s degrees in Business Administration in Accounting and Financial Management in Accounting. She began her career as an Accounts Payable/Accounts Receivable Intern in 2010 for a property management firm where she transitioned to Accounts Receivable Manager, and later Property Accountant. Tomeika enjoys working in Accounting and loves solving complex issues dealing with the intricacies of accountancy. She strives to be a great asset to the 5T team by utilizing her educational and professional background to provide outstanding support to senior management, the property managers and to the company's client base. When she’s not crunching numbers, Tomeika loves spending time with her family, traveling home to Mississippi, and sewing African-inspired clothing.

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Jermelda Shine
Compliance\Asset Manager

Jermelda has over 21 years of experience in the affordable housing (12 years) and market rate (9 years) industries. She began her career in housing as a luxury housing leasing agent and grew to become the Director of Operations. She was introduced to the affordable housing market in 2006 where she held many positions including Community Manager, Training and Development Specialist and she also, conducted Management Occupancy Reviews for IHDA. She started as the Asset Manager in June 2016 with Five T Management. She has an eye for detail and her desire to make systems, processes and people work as effectively and efficiently as possible make her a natural fit for compliance. She prides herself on her strong knowledge of the HUD and Illinois compliance Laws, and providing the 5T Team members with the support, tools, resources and information they need to be successful. She is very passionate about providing decent, safe and sanitary housing and following the local and HUD regulations. Jermelda has earned Tax Credit Specialist (TCS), C3P, Management Occupancy Specialist (MOR), Assisted Housing Manager (AHM), Blended Occupancy Specialist (BOS), Certified Occupancy Specialist (COS), and Fair Housing Specialist (FHS) certifications and an Illinois Leasing Agent License.

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Saundra Bethley
Senior Property Manager

Saundra was born to serve and is eager to lend her property management, non-for-profit and creative expertise to 5T Management. She has been in a leadership roll in the property management and non-for-profit arenas for 12 plus years; in addition to being an active member of the United States Air Force Reserve for 18 years. Saundra has managed a variety of apartments, ranging from public The Chicago Housing Authority (CHA), HUD, Tax Credit and Market rate units within the City of Chicago over the past 6 years. Her experience in the housing industry began in 2003, by assisting public housing residents find new homes through CHA’s Plan for Transformation housing choice voucher program. Prior to entering the real estate industry Saundra worked to obtain permanent housing placements for children and youth who were wards of the state. She brought those skills to public housing residents she served as a Family Works Lead Case manager then Supervisor. One of Saundra’s greatest gifts is her willingness to serve others in every aspect of her professional life but more importantly in her personal life as she regularly volunteers throughout the City of Chicago. Providing excellent customer service is one of her best skill sets. She lives by the Air Force’s core values: Integrity first, Service before self and Excellence in all you do. Saundra holds an Associates degree in Non-Destructive Testing, a Bachelors degree in Psychology and will resume her pursuit of her MBA in Organizational Management and Project Management in January 2019. She holds certifications in Rent Calculations and Uniform Physical Conditions Standards.

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Tasia Shine
Head Project Manager

She has over 5 years of experience and has held a number of positions in the property management industry. Before joining 5T management in February 2017 she was located in the Phoenix, Arizona metropolitan area. She has overseen communities as large as 460 units, scattered sites including tax credit, independent senior living, ownership/management property sales, conventional developments, redevelopments, and section 8. She is passionate about customer service and is happy to be part of a great team. She also plays a role as the 5T management Special Projects Coordinator where she takes the lead on many special projects within the company. Tasia has received a Certificate in Baking and Pastries, Associates degrees in Culinary Arts, Bachelor’s degree in Hospitality and Tourism Management and is currently pursuing her Masters Of Business Administration in Marketing with Entertainment Management.

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Ariel Howard
Property Manager

Ariel Howard is a senior at Northeastern Illinois University majoring in Inner City Studies, and is anticipating graduation December of 2019. Her four years of property management experience, a leasing license and an abundance of energy to serve our residents and love for urban communities provide a great boost to her credibility. When she isn’t tending to properties, she enjoys entertaining others, cooking and trying new restaurants around the city. She loves all things pertaining to service and giving back to communities with an emphasis on Urban Inner-city communities. She loves surrounding herself with positive people that encourage and uplift others. Labeling herself a fast learner she hopes that she can acquire all that she can as it pertains to property management and utilize her knowledge to make housing better for all.

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Kiona Woodards
HUD Property Manager

Kiona has over 12 years of Real Estate experience in various types of housing programs in different sectors of the industry. Kiona started out as a administrative assistant in 2007, where she then found her love for Real Estate. She decided to start her journey by obtaining her Illinois leasing Agent license in 2011 and Certified occupancy specialist certification in 2012. Kiona has been a independent Leasing Agent with Coldwell Bankers Residental Brokerage, as well as successful Leader and Property Manager for various companies. Kiona prides herself on her tenant relation and problem solving skills. Kiona has experience with Senior living, Tax credit, HUD housing, public housing, Chicago housing authority (CHAC), HOME, and Market housing. Kiona will be obtaining her Illinois Broker license in 2019. In her spare time Kiona enjoys reading, spending time with her family and studying healthy living.

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Shetera Busch
Property Manager

Shetera Busch is a Certified Property Manager and Illinois Licensed Leasing Agent with 6 years of experience in the Real Estate Industry. She received her Associates in Communications from Parkland College and her leasing license from the Chicago Real Estate Institute. With over 10 years in customer service and sales, Shetera utilizes her skills to forge new and long-lasting resident relationships. She prides herself on delivering quality service to each resident through her exceptional problem-solving skills. Shetera is dedicated to making the tenants feel comfortable with choosing their “new home”. Currently, she is the Property and Leasing Manager for over 24 properties and serves as the “go to” for all of 5T Management’s leasing activities and assists in setting and obtaining leasing goals.

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Darius Hampton
Maintenance Supervisor

Darius is the maintenance supervisor at 5T management, where he supervises the maintenance staff as well as implements preventative care measures for 5T management. He develops schedules and strategic maintenance plans with administration. He received a bachelors in Business Management from Eastern Illinois University. He has worked with reputable management companies including Lake Meadows, Lincoln Wood Pine tree and Genesis Wealth, among others. He acts as a liaison to tenants while troubleshooting equipment with maintenance staff. He enjoys problem solving and art

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Lexus Perry
Administrative Assistant

Lexus is new to the property management industry and is eager to learn and perform at the highest level in every area. Positions in management in the fields of hospitality and retail have equipped Lexus with the aptitude and communication skill set necessary to produce great problem-solving techniques for her team, clientele, and 5t Management Company. With aspirations of holding a career in the Healthcare Administration field, Lexus is currently pursuing her degree in Business and Healthcare Administration. She has an eye for working in 5T’s newest endeavor of supportive living communities! In her spare time she enjoys traveling and going to concerts.

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