Ten exceptional young professionals have proven themselves to represent Central Ohio and Columbus REALTORS® as the 2019 10 under 40 honorees.These deserving awardees exemplify leadership, community, enthusiasm, innovation and success in their real estate endeavors. Each one of these individuals has embodied the diverse landscape of the real estate industry and will only continue to thrive.
The 10 Under 40 Award received a significant amount of interest and number of applicants. Many young professionals applied to be recognized as one of the top real estate professionals under 40 in central Ohio.
Of these 2019 honorees we have a former middle school English teacher, soccer and baseball coach, a business consultant, many Ohio State University graduates, fitness guru’s, travelers, readers, parents, Cleveland sports fans, animal lovers, and all hardworking real estate professionals that have been raised and work in the beautiful state of O-H-I-O.
The 10 Under 40 Award is an initiative set forth by Columbus REALTORS® and the implementation of the award is spearheaded by the Young Professionals Network (YPN). As the name of the award suggests, it is issued to REALTORS® under the age of 40 who are successful, demonstrate enthusiasm, innovation and commitment to the real estate industry.
Each March/April, Columbus REALTORS® In Contract Magazine features 10 excellent young professionals in the real estate industry. These select individuals are the rising stars in real estate and have performed excellence within the following categories: sales and volume, community and professional involvement, business strategy and an ‘x factor’ which includes letters of recommendation and uncategorized content.
Continue reading to learn more about the 2019 10 Under 40 honorees and how they have impacted their real estate community!
Andie Brown Frisky, Cutler Real Estate
Andie has traveled solo to countries where she didn’t speak the language. Her 2-year-old lab is a trained water-foul dog & soon to be a Canine Good Citizen. She donates private dinner parties in her home to silent auctions for charities. She identifies herself as a city mouse & her husband a country mouse. Andie and her husband just bought 3 acres in Delaware & says it's the best of both worlds. She describes a perfect day spent with her husband, step kids & dogs, outdoors, with good food & wine. Andie is a history geek & loves to visit old homes on vacation. As she approaches her 40th birthday she is compiling a ‘life' list. So far swimming with manatees & having a fully furnished dollhouse have made the list.
Other than real estate, what is your passion? Travel, cooking & entertaining. If a week goes by & we don’t have at least someone over for a meal or cocktails, I must be sick in bed. I love taking a trip & hosting a dinner party with the cuisine from where I’ve just returned. I often have dinners in my home that are auctioned off at charity fundraisers. A great way to give back and meet new people!
What makes you stand out amongst the other 10 Under 40 honorees? I watched my mom & paternal grandmother as Realtors their entire lives. I admired the genuine passion and care they had for their clients which ultimately, I believe, made them successful. I still admire how even in very different eras than today, they were both able to have financially successful businesses while being incredible mothers.
Gregory S. Kullman, Street Sotheby's International Realty
Greg graduated from Bexley High School in 1999 and studied Economics Management at Ohio Wesleyan University and received his MBA from The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business. In 2018, Greg & Kiki welcomed their twin boys, Cam & Kyle, to their family, and after a long stay in the NICU at Nationwide Children's Hospital have been blessed to watch them grow and develop over the back part of 2018. Greg's strong knowledge of the area and his honest customer service backed by great leadership makes him an asset to clients looking to buy or sell in Central Ohio. In his spare time, Greg can be found supporting the Columbus Crew and Manchester United and enjoys watching his beloved Ohio State Buckeyes as their success helps balance his love for the Cleveland Browns. Greg was the 2018 Columbus Realtors YPN Chair and is the 2019 Columbus Realtors MLS Committee Chair and the 2019 Ohio Realtors YPN Chair.
Why did you get into real estate? I married into a family of Realtors and saw how rewarding it was helping people put roots down in the great communities of Columbus. Today, I run a small team with my wife, Kiki, and my sister-in-law Sally. Kiki’s grandparents started our company in the early 70s, and several family members are still involved today.
Other than real estate, what is your passion? Books, sports and people. I buy 50+ books each year and enjoy time to decompress. I also enjoy building relationships through networking opportunities and spending quality time with family, friends, and my twins Cam & Kyle. We enjoy Lake Erie and Marco Island, and support Manchester United, the Columbus Crew, Cleveland sports and the Buckeyes.
John Yoder- Key Realty
John is a REALTOR with Key Realty – The John Yoder Team serving Knox County, Ohio. John grew up in south-eastern Pennsylvania. His first exposure to real estate came through working alongside his grandfather, an agribusiness person, real estate investor and developer. As a teenager, John remembers helping his grandparents paint, hang wall paper and fix plumbing at their rental properties. When John married the love of his life in 2003, they chose Rachal’s home area, Knox County, Ohio to buy and renovate their first home. In 2006 John transitioned from ag to real estate by becoming a full-time real estate investor. John was involved in rehabbing single-family homes and managing rental properties. In 2012 he acquired his real estate license to further grow his investing business. John started representing outside clients and soon realized that agency work was an ideal fit for him. Because of his background in investing, John works well with investor clients and especially enjoys the marketing and negotiation aspects of the business. When he’s not working, John loves traveling with Rachal, seeing Auralie (14) light up the stage, watching Judah (12) and Ethan (8) play soccer or baseball and playing with baby Luna (1 year).
Why did you get into real estate? I initially got into real estate because I thought it would be a fun and exciting career. Later, as I began representing clients, I found that I really enjoy helping people navigate the buying and selling process. I can use my personal experience to assist my clients by drawing from my success as well as my mistakes. My clients love my work, and for me, acting as a sales agent has become more fulfilling than simply investing in my own projects.
Other than real estate, what is your passion? I love running and travel! I currently run between 50 and 70 miles per week. Last year I qualified for Boston Marathon, so I hope to run that someday. Our family really enjoys the outdoors and travel. We have camped at Yellowstone, Grand Teton and our favorite, Glacier National Park in Montana. While there, we enjoy hiking, fishing and seeing all the wildlife.
Josh Uminski, Key Realty
Josh like to identify himself as a pretty “down to earth” guy who likes getting to know people for who they are. He is from a small suburb of Canton, OH where Friday nights are spent watching the high school football game, or in the gym rooting on the basketball team. That shows as he very much enjoys a good dive bar and hanging out with buddies to watch the Cleveland Browns. When he is not selling homes, he enjoys a good book, lots of coffee, and a classic vinyl album on the record player…more than likely The Eagles, Tom Petty, or Aerosmith. Josh currently lives in Blacklick and one of his favorite spots is his couch with his wife while binge watching Netflix. Before real estate Josh coached baseball at Worthington Kilbourne, and he shares that, there’s still nothing better than the pop of a mitt or crack of the bat.
Give us a little taste of your secret sauce! I used to hate selfies. I despised them. Then, one year I made it a goal to embrace them. From selfies I went into videos and haven’t looked back. It’s a way to connect with people before you ever meet them.
Other than real estate, what is your passion? I love to learn. If I don’t have a book I’m reading, a magazine in my bag, or an article on my phone I can scroll through in my spare time I’d go crazy. I’m a big fan of biographies and memoirs because you get to live through that person.
Katie Fussner, Keller Williams Capital Partners
Katie was born and raised in Columbus and currently lives in Grandview with her two cats in a 100-year old house. She was originally a middle school English teacher for eight years before making the switch to real estate! Katie is very passionate about helping others and loves teaching the home buying and selling process to clients. In addition to real estate, she spends her time working out at Orange Theory fitness, reading books, or tackling a house project. Most of her family still resides in Columbus and her mother, who is a former teacher, just joined her real estate team.
Bragging on your backyard: As a Columbus native, I have seen the city and surrounding suburbs change and grow dramatically over the years. Some of my favorite aspects of the city are the historic neighborhoods and the architectural style of the homes. Each area has its own personality and there is always something new (restaurants, coffee shops, stores) to check out and enjoy.
Give us a little taste of your secret sauce! My “secret to success” is treating every client as if they were a member of my family buying or selling a home. I truly put my client’s needs first, and make sure I am being a proactive and attentive agent. As a result, I have developed far more than a business relationship, but true friendships and connections!
Katrina Judd, The Realty Firm
As a Founding Partner at The Realty Firm, Katrina has proven that hard work and the ability to foster relationships can make all the difference in residential real estate. Since 2006, she has built relationships with hundreds of clients and has remained a top-producing and trusted confidant in the industry. Katrina grew up in Gahanna and received her degree from OSU. After purchasing her first home at the age of 21, she realized her passion for real estate and the importance of education to buyers. Katrina spends time up front preparing her clients so that they have an edge in this market. She is trusted by several major companies to assist in relocating their employees and values the trust that clients place in her on one of the most important financial decisions that most people will ever make. Katrina resides in New Albany with her husband and their two children.
Why did you get into real estate? When I purchased my first home, my husband and I were 21-year-old college students. We worked with a dual agent and trusted the one person, who was representing the seller, to guide us. I quickly realized the importance of education which is why I spend so much time up front with my clients!
Tell us about “that” transaction! I was approached by a couple who had been living in a home that they were in contract to lease purchase. Unfortunately, the seller defaulted on the mortgage and the home went into foreclosure. Having experience at sheriff’s auctions, we were able to successfully purchase the home- a challenge and experience that I will never forget!
Nicole Harrison, The Harrison Co. Real Estate Group
Nicole is the Principal Broker and Owner of The Harrison Co. Real Estate Group! She got her real estate license at the age of 18 and after 19 years in the business, she describes her experience as an amazing ride! Nicole became a broker in 2017 and shares that her office is housed in a 110-year-old church in Uptown Westerville that she purchased/renovated in 2017 because why have a “normal” office?! She loves that in real estate, every day is different; she loves the people she meets and loves the journeys she gets asked to join in on, as people’s lives evolve into different ways, with different housing needs. Nicole believes kindness and Integrity are pivotal, especially in her business. She prides on working hard and just pushing through any chaos that may arise, because, well, that happens in real estate. Nicole lives in Sunbury with her better half, Don, who’s a commercial broker, with their 2 dogs.
Give us a little taste of your secret sauce! Communication! Answering your phone, returning calls/emails/texts promptly just helps to keep everyone informed. Your clients feel better, agents your co-op with feel better; it’s just a win-win for all involved. Let’s be honest, your phone is in your hand ALL. DAY. Kindness, too; it goes so much further than people realize.
Bragging on your backyard: Central Ohio is growing like crazy! Redevelopment is happening and it’s amazing! Areas like Bridge Park in Dublin are a prime example of the growing desire for walkable, mixed-use communities. We have some amazing entrepreneurs here and I love supporting small business, as a small business owner myself!
Rachel Alley, Keller Williams Capital Partners
Rachel comes from a consulting background with a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Ohio Northern University. She is passionate about real estate and the connections she can build with people. There is nothing more fulfilling than being able to help our client’s transition into the next phase of their lives. Rachel grew up in the small town of, Millersport, and comes from a large family who she loves spending time with. In her free time, she enjoys exercising, volunteering at the dog shelter, and experiencing new foods and cultures through travel with her husband.
Tell us about "that" transaction! A seller client had lost his wife and was failing to make ends meet. Facing foreclosure, we secured a contract on his home. At closing, he cried tears of relief and closure. My purpose in life is to help people and this was confirmation I had chosen the right career.
Other than real estate, what is your passion? I have a passion for rescue animals! I donate and volunteer at the animal shelter and own two rescue dogs, Tucker and Vina. We use our social media platforms to raise awareness and encourage people to adopt, especially our clients looking to add a fur baby to their household.
Sahar Shalash, Key Realty
Sahar is the product of two Palestinian immigrants and was born in good old Kentucky. However, being raised in Columbus she considers the Buckeye city her home! Sahar is a proud OSU Alumni and will always cheer on our Bucks! She graduated with an Economics degree from The Ohio State University, which helped create a passion for investments and understanding market trends. Sahar has begun the process of opening her own brokerage in order to have a full-fledged brand of her own. As a daughter of Palestinian immigrants, Sahar was taught to work hard, do things herself, and always be humble enough to not pass on opportunities. Being taught work ethic early on motivated her to always achieve more. Among the first Middle Eastern females to be a part of the real estate industry and real estate brokers in Columbus, Sahar’s background surely contributed to her discipline and dedication.
Other than real estate, what is your passion? Aside from real estate being a passion, I love to work out! I always ensure at least 4 to 5 workouts per week to maintain discipline and drive. I also love trying new restaurants and supporting local businesses. Restaurant week is always on my calendar regardless of my hectic schedule. I make time!
What makes you stand out amongst the other 10 Under 40 honorees? My self-motivation has allowed me to delve deeper into taking on a leadership position, which brought about the vision of creating my own brand. Ultimately being able to have an impact on people’s lives and investments are the key elements, which ignite my passion for real estate.
Sara Marie Brenner, Keller Williams Capital Partners
Sara Marie Brenner holds a BA in Political Science & International Relations Theory, an MBA in finance/international business and is earning a PhD in Education: Instructional Design & Technology. She lives in Powell with her husband, State Sen. Andrew Brenner (also a Realtor), and her fur babies -- Haley the chocolate lab, Maggie the golden retriever, and Ellie the cat. Sara Marie is the Team Lead of Brenner Property Group at Keller Williams Capital Partners, where she is a verified member of Keller Williams Luxury International. She has been a licensed agent since April 2017 and is a member of the Institute for Luxury Home Marketing. Sara Marie received her Million Dollar Club award in 2018. She has earned her ABR, PSA, AHWD, and CTA, and formerly was an Adjunct Instructor of Business and Real Estate at Hondros College.
Other than real estate, what is your passion?
I grew up in music and theatre -- piano, singing, dance, violin, flute, guitar, musicals, and plays. I keep many of those performance concepts in mind today when I’m presenting or working with clients. I do improv activities with my team to build confidence in conversation.
What makes you stand out amongst the other 10 under 40 honorees?
I have had my license for 22 months but have quickly come to love and thrive in this industry. I had to figure most of it out on my own until I joined my current brokerage! I have now established mentorship and coaching relationships so that I can continue to grow in my business.