One Vision | Community | Voice
2020 President Maren Brisson-Kuester is eager to unite the association and encourage more to join her at the table.
Late last year, Insight caught up with Maren Brisson-Kuester after a day of meetings at the NC REALTORS® headquarters office in Greensboro. This is just one of the many “hats” she wears in her daily life.
Not only is she heading up the 48,000-member state association as president this year, she’s busy leading operations at HM Properties in Charlotte and on top of all that, she’s raising two sons as a single mom.
To most, this would seem impossible. To Maren, multi-tasking is just her way of life. It’s even how she got into the real estate business to begin with. At the age of 23, while working for an internet marketing company during the day, she started taking real estate classes at night. She received her real estate license in 2003 and jumped right into the business and into top-producer status.
“This career was a natural fit for me, but I’ve always thought bigger than just brokering. It’s ultimately what led me to my leadership roles.”
Thanks to a suggestion from a friend, Maren first stepped into the REALTOR® association world through Canopy REALTOR® Association’s Leadership Academy. From there, she became the youngest person to serve as the association’s president. And, she did it twice, in 2015 and 2016.
“It’s all manageable. That’s the story I tell to people about why they should get involved in leadership and not be afraid of the time commitment. If I could build a family, build an extremely successful brokerage business and get involved in leadership roles at my association and community, anyone can do it.”
And for Maren, it’s essential to her career and the future of the real estate industry. If you haven’t heard her say it yet, you will this year: “I want a seat at the table, not on the table. If you don’t speak up, then someone else will do it for you.”
It is that leadership philosophy that influenced her theme for her year as president: One Vision. One Community. One Voice.
“We all have the same basic needs. We all want what’s good for our state, for our urban centers and our rural areas. We all want each other to be successful and we can do it collectively much better than we can apart.”
Maren is looking forward to unifying the association across borders. She’s ready to tackle the tough conversations about the future of the industry. She’s eager to communicate the value of the association, especially the power of advocacy and the power of REALTORS® as a unit. And, she’s leaving many seats at her table for more diverse voices to join in.
“I’m not in it for the glory. I’m certainly not in it for the money. I’m in it to help leave a footprint where someone else might want to follow behind.”
What’s #1 on your bucket list?
I don’t have some big dream bucket list. I just want to grab the little moments with the ones I love and appreciate them in the simplest ways.
Go-to apps on your phone:
Waze, Postmates and Instacart.
What do you believe is the future of the MLS?
I think we might not have an MLS, at least how we know it, in the next decade. It will change and evolve. We may have a big regional one or a national one. I don’t know, but there will definitely be change.
Binge-worthy show or series:
The Crown and 90-Day Fiancé
Best piece of advice you’ve received:
“Never change who you are.”
Greatest life accomplishment?
Seeing my children succeed.