As she prepares to serve as president of the Greater Las Vegas Association of Realtors for 2012, Kolleen Kelley knows she's facing plenty of challenges. But at least she'll be able to draw upon a wealth of experience and a long list of allies.
The longtime local Realtor now working with Elite Realty in Las Vegas has spent 2011 serving as GLVAR's president-elect. It's the latest in a life's worth of experiences that have prepared her to lead the largest professional association in Southern Nevada through some of the most trying times in the history of the local economy and housing market.
"I was born into a real estate family," she said. "My father was a banker. My mother was a real estate broker since 1948. And my brother was an appraiser. It was not by chance that I came into the real estate profession."
A 35-year resident of Las Vegas with more than three decades of professional experience, Kelley was born and raised in Denver. Her diverse career includes many years as a real estate agent before going into management. Along the way, she has handled large commercial real estate transactions, as well as leasing. She has worked on condominium conversion projects and sold new homes for builders. She was the corporate broker for one large local real estate firm for six years and was general manager of another. She has earned a host of professional designations and served on several professional committees for the local and state Realtor associations.
When asked about the most pressing issues facing her association and her industry, she answers with two words: "the economy."
"Professionally, I'd say the big issues are short sales and REO (real estate-owned or bank-owned) homes," she added.
The best way to overcome these challenges, she said, is to work together.
Addressing hundreds of members who attended GLVAR's annual installation event Nov. 18 at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel, Kelley called for unity among GLVAR members and with others important to the industry.
"What we have going for us is a strong professional group of members who are united and determined to continue working in an important industry, and to do all they can to make a good living," she said. "By working together, I think we can build an even more formidable group that protects and promotes our industry."
During the Nov. 18 event, GLVAR also installed its newly elected board members charged with joining Kelley in leading its nearly 11,500 members through 2012.
Paul Bell, of Prudential Americana Group, transitions from GLVAR president for 2011 to immediate past president in 2012.