Page 1

TA R R A N T

C O N N E C T I N G .

E L E VAT I N G .

I N S P I R I N G .

RISING STAR: Ryan Wilson FEATURED AGENT: Chelsie Synatschk

Kelly Marcontell & Susan Gilchrest

PARTNER SPOTLIGHT: Rialto Coaching

POWERHOUSE PARTNERSHIP

Photo by: Samantha Farris

AUGUST 2021


2 • August 2021

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Tarrant Real Producers • 3


TAB LE OF

CONTENTS 05

06 Index of Trusted Partners

Publisher’s Note: Keep Your Eye on the Ball!

12

18

28

Meet the Tarrant RP Team

08

Event Recap

Rising Star: Ryan Wilson

Partner Spotlight: Rialto Coaching

34

38

44

Celebrating Life: Charles Brazil

Featured Agent: Chelsie Synatschk

Cover Story: Kelly Marcontell & Susan Gilchrest

If you are interested in contributing or nominating REALTORS® for certain stories, please email us at lance.dunahoe@realproducersmag.com. DISCLAIMER: Any articles included in this publication and/or opinions expressed therein do not necessarily reflect the views of The N2 Company d/b/a Real Producers but remain solely those of the author(s). The paid advertisements contained within the Tarrant Real Producers magazine are not endorsed or recommended by The N2 Company or the publisher. Therefore, neither The N2 Company nor the publisher may be held liable or responsible for business practices of these companies.

4 • August 2021

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MEET THE

TA R R A N T REAL PRODUCERS TEAM

Jordan Espeseth

Lance Dunahoe

Rachelle Marie

Jenica Hein

Katherine Fondren

Les McGehee

Dave Danielson

Traci Schwomeyer

Amanda Thornburg

Missy Kremer

Co-Owner

Administrative Assistant

Photographer

Content Coordinator

Ad Strategist

Co-Owner

Writer

Editor

Assistant Publisher

Writer

Rick Davis

Videographer

Samantha Farris Photographer

Jason Van Sickel

Photographer/Videographer

If you are interested in contributing or nominating REALTORS® for certain stories, please email us at lance.dunahoe@realproducersmag.com.

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Tarrant Real Producers • 5


PREFERRED PARTNERS

This section has been created to give you easier access when searching for a trusted real estate affiliate. Take a minute to familiarize yourself with the businesses sponsoring your magazine. These local businesses are proud to partner with you and make this magazine possible. Please support these businesses and thank them for supporting the REALTOR® community! BUSINESS COACHING Rialto Academy (512) 743-4330 RialtoAcademy.com

INSURANCE Duren Jenkins Agency (817) 445-0120 insurinwithduren.com

CLIENT AND REFERRAL GIFTS Indulgent Treats (469) 992-1911 GabbysIndulgentTreats.com

Insurance Solutions Group, LLC (817) 354-6800 isgdfw.com

CLIENT ENGAGEMENT LEADS by Mandi Jackson (801) 598-5767 LEADSbyMandi.com HEALTH Restore Hyperwellness & Cryotherapy (817) 912-1550 Restore.com HEATING & AIR CONDITIONING AGES Services Company (817) 851-8155 agesservicescompany.com HOME INSPECTION HomeTeam Inspection Service (972) 400-7034 HomeTeam-DFW.com Inspect360 (817) 754-0360 inspect360.com Semper Fi Home Inspections, Inc. (682) 351-3875 SemperFiHomeInspections.com HOME WARRANTY Achosa Home Warranty (817) 933-8707 www.achosahw.com HomeServe Home Warranty (817) 538-8977 Home-Warranty.com

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Liberty Mutual Insurance (817) 898-6187 LibertyMutual.com/Agent/Tracy-McNeil MEDIA PRODUCTIONS #TheDifference Radio,Livestream and Podcast (214) 883-1294 www.hashtag-thedifference.com MORTGAGE LENDING Cherry Creek Mortgage (817) 709-4683 NunisLending.com

She’s My Sky Photography (817) 313-4091 ROOFING Mighty Dog Roofing (817) 666-3057 www.MightyDogRoofing.com PROCO Roofing and Construction (817) 975-5948 procoroof.com Tarrant Roofing (817) 987-1210 TarrantRoofing.com TITLE Alamo Title Company - Southlake (817) 896-8686 AlamoDFW.com Allegiance Title (817) 510-6490 AllegianceTitle.com

Cross Country Mortgage Justin Padron (817) 754-1498 PadronLoans.com

Boston National Title of Texas (972) 584-9660 bnttexas.com

Fairway Independent Mortgage Corp (817) 812-2276 AnginetteHomeLoans.com

Fair Texas Title (602) 421-6417 fairtexastitle.com

Gracie Morrow Mortgage Group (972) 757-2132 GMMG-MTG.com

Texas Excel Title LLC (817) 980-1018 TexasExcelTitle.com

MOVING SERVICES Stonebriar Moving Services (469) 734-9000 stonebriarmoving.com

VIDEO PRODUCTION/ MARKETING/PHOTOGRAPHY Flux Media Productions (469) 955-5833 fluxmediaproductions.com

PHOTOGRAPHY Metroplex Headshots (817) 455-7384 MetroplexHeadshots.com

WINDOWS & SIDING Tarrant Windows & Siding (817) 987-1210 TarrantWindows.com

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Bringing Your Vision To Life & Making Your Occasions Special

Life

Bringing Your Vision To Life & Making Your Occasions

Special

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Tarrant Real Producers • 7


KEEP YOUR

publisher’s note

EYE ON THE BALL!

back to that slobbery, squeaky ball. It’s the first thing he thinks of when he wakes up, and it’s right next to him when he goes to sleep. It’s a rare thing for Rocky to let it out of his sight. In fact, as I write this publisher’s note, he lays right next to me with … you guessed it … said ball. His love for his ball usually brings me a chuckle, but as I sat down to write this note to you all, it brought me inspiration. My dad used to say to me growing up, “Keep your eye on the ball.” I can’t help but think how Rocky is a fabulous, literal picture of this. The phrase originates from baseball and means to, as Merriam Webster puts it, “continue thinking about or giving attention to something important: to stay focused.”

I have owned several dogs growing up, but none like Rocky. He is my 6-year-old Blue Merle Australian Shepherd, with one eye blue and the other brown. If you follow me on social media, I’m sure you’ve seen some pictures by now. His great loves in life are me, his ball, and peanut butter. Perhaps his ball should be listed first, but I’d like to think that I am! Any dog moms or dads out there? When that bright orange and blue ball comes out, Rocky can think of nothing else. He goes tunnel vision and carries it around with him everywhere. You could say he eats, sleeps, and breathes that rubber ball. I’ve tried to hide it. He finds it. I’ve tried other toys, but to no avail, he keeps going 8 • August 2021

As we are eight months into the year and in the midst of summer, it can be easy to let your guard down, lose sight of your goals … drop the ball. All in the name of vacation, the “summer slowdown,” and feeling already perhaps like the year is gone. If you are struggling with all the “fun in the sun” to stay motivated, take heart, you aren’t the only one. While it’s certainly necessary to take breaks, enjoy time off with family and friends, I want to encourage you to “Keep your eye on the ball.”

What is that important goal that you set out to achieve this year? What hangs on your vision board? What did you say aloud again and again to yourself and to those around you? There is still four months left of the year, and I don’t think a better time to say to you what my dad used to say to me. The RP Team and I get a lucky front-row seat “in the stands” to cheer those of you on in the Top 500! So please hear us saying, you got this! Stay focused! KEEP YOUR EYE ON THE BALL! What would you say to encourage your fellow peers in the RP Community? Is there an inspirational quote, song, or personal story you can share? Please share it in our Closed Facebook Group, DFW Elite 1500 Real Estate Agents. Rooting for you, Rachelle Marie Assistant Publisher @realproducers


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Tarrant Real Producers • 9


MEET THE CO MM UNI T Y Check Out Some of Tarrant County’s Top 500 Producing REALTORS®!

10 • August 2021

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Nominate a top REALTOR® you’d like to see featured by emailing lance.dunahoe@realproducersmag.com.

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Tarrant Real Producers • 11


event recap

June & July

Magazine Release Party Starting in 2021, Real Producers is now doing mini Magazine Release Parties! In attendance for these events, we will have those real estate agents and businesses that were featured in that issue along with a few non-featured advertising partners.

Congratulations again to Troy George, Sascha Chatman, Sonia Leonard, AGES Services Company (formerly AC Executives, LLC), Dennis Tuttle, Justin Mason, Betty Arguello, and Danny Helms with Boston National Title of Texas.

This month’s party was like all of our parties - it was an absolute blast! At this event, we showcased the June and July 2021 issues. These events are such a fun way to debut the magazine and connect with a smaller group of incredible people.

Our team feels very grateful to have had the chance to share your stories and celebrate with you.

12 • August 2021

We look forward to continuing these smaller celebrations in the months and years ahead!

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Tarrant Real Producers • 13


14 • August 2021

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RYAN

WILSON 18 • August 2021

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Tarrant Real Producers • 19


IT’S NOT WHO YOU KNOW rising star Written by: Kaitlin Merchant Davison and Anne Marie Hampshire, Rialto Coaching Photos by: Samantha Farris

“It’s not who you know; it’s who knows you.” That’s Ryan Wilson’s favorite quote. And after he shares what makes his real estate career so successful, and his personal life so fulfilling, there’s no question why it speaks to him so powerfully. Born and raised in Southwest Fort Worth near Benbrook Lake (“I’m a Tarrant County guy through and through”), Ryan knows and cares about a lot of folks. And a lot of folks know and care about Ryan. There is a myriad of reasons for this, but a big one is that he cultivates friendships with nearly all his clients. “We’re members of Timarron Country Club, and we have a standing dinner there with friends every Friday night,” he says. “Many of those friends started out as clients and turned into friends. It’s not rare for client relationships to transition into true friendships.” Flash backward a “few” years to a different country club, where Ryan, an ambitious 16-year-old, first learned the art of forging connections and building trust — as a bag boy. “That job really prepared me for life in sales and specifically as a real estate advisor,” he recalls. “Through my interactions with business leaders,

20 • August 2021

doctors, and attorneys, I learned how to build rapport and trust even with those with whom I may not have much in common. In this career, I work with people from all walks of life with different personality types, and my ability to adjust and relate has allowed me to grow my business.” Indeed, Ryan observed something few carefree teenage guys can wrap their heads around: Hard work and savings early on lead to a freedom and the ability to sit back and enjoy it later. And thus began the hard work that has led to his present-day success (not that he’s sitting back yet, not even close). “My goal from a young age and all through college was to work for myself, preferably in a sales role,” he says. And after “less than stellar” sales jobs through college and after graduation, he discovered real estate, which piqued his interest in a way previous sales jobs had not. “That’s when it clicked that, for me at least, having passion about the product you’re selling and the service you’re providing is directly related to the success you will achieve.” As real estate advisor for Engel & Vöelkers Dallas Southlake, Ryan is certainly achieving that success. How? Best practices in marketing say to find your niche and double down. Ryan has done that. He lives and breathes Southlake. And it’s not just a sales pitch. “If you ask just about anyone in my friends group, they’ll tell you I am the most passionate Southlake ‘fan’ they know. I live, work, and play here, and I take great pride in everything this area has to offer,” he says.

IF YOU ASK JUST ABOUT ANYONE IN MY FRIENDS GROUP, THEY’LL TELL YOU I AM THE MOST PASSIONATE SOUTHLAKE ‘FAN’ THEY KNOW.

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Tarrant Real Producers • 21


genuine relationships has provided me with the opportunity to work with clients who trust me without reservation, which allows me to provide a high-level of service.” With two kids under six-years-old, and twins on the way, Ryan’s dedication to family fuels his drive to serve his clients at the highest level. “Fortunately, my wife and I excel in craziness, and we have always wanted a big family,” he says with a laugh. With Big Family imminent, Ryan recently started to build his real estate team, allowing him to serve as both coach and mentor. His new team, The Wilson Group, is made up of two newer agents with deep Southlake roots. He’s helping them understand that they need to know everything about the areas where they want to grow their business. “Streets, home values, HOA presidents, the principals of the schools, the local churches, the daycares…” he says. “Everything.”

And in an industry saturated with ways to buy leads and competitors with massive ad spends, Ryan stands apart. He’s never spent one dollar on advertising. All his clients come from his sphere, referrals, or word of mouth. That’s an amazing business practice — one that most aim to achieve but rarely do. This comes back to how many people know and care about Ryan.

22 • August 2021

Another reason for this remarkable referral engine? His involvement in his community runs deep. “I am very involved in my church, neighborhood, and schools, and those relationships have allowed me to rely entirely on referrals,” he explains. “I have found that just about all the families I help move to Southlake end up as lifelong friends. Our kids go to each other’s birthdays! I find that building those

This brings us back to where we began with Rising Star Ryan Wilson. “It’s not who you know; it’s who knows you.” For Ryan, it may be a little of both; his focus on building organic, genuine relationships has already rewarded him with deep friendships and ongoing referrals. As for the quote, he says his interpretation of it has changed since he first heard it in college. “Now I see it as being a person who makes enough of an impact on my family and community that my reputation precedes me.” To learn more about Ryan, visit ryanwilson.evrealestate.com or call him at 817-475-5064.

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@shesmysky�hotog Tarrant Real Producers • 23


“It’s not about the loans we do; it is about the hearts we change and the people we help.” Anginette Cells Jorrey, Loan Officer | NMLS # 216856 / 2289 Office 817-812-2276 | Direct 214-908-2828 anginettej@fairwaymc.com | AnginetteHomeLoans.com

I look forward to building a relationship with you. Give me a call TODAY! 1201 Hall Johnson Rd, Suites 100 & 101 • Colleyville, TX 76034 Copyright©2018 Fairway Independent Mortgage Corporation. NMLS#2289. 4750 S. Biltmore Lane, Madison, WI 53718, 1-877-699-0353. All rights reserved. This is not an offer to enter into an agreement. Not all customers will qualify. Information, rates and programs are subject to change without notice. All products are subject to credit and property approval. Other restrictions and limitations may apply. Equal Housing Lender. Fairway is not affiliated with any government agencies. These materials are not from HUD or FHA and were not approved by HUD or a government agency.

24 • August 2021

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If you’re at the top of your game, congratulations! But … are you done now?

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COACHING Next Session of Rialto Presents in October 2021 Live Webinar: Finish Strong! Hosted By Les McGehee and Alan Rice

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YOUR TARRANT REAL PRODUCERS

BADGES CONGRATS on being one of the TOP 500 PRODUCING real estate agents in Tarrant County! You now have your own badge to use however you’d like to show that you’ve made it a part of this exclusive community of the top 1-2% in real estate!

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Missing your badge? Email jordan.espeseth@realproducersmag.com Using your badge? We’d love to see how! Social media, email signatures, website, listings, marketing material... nothing’s off limits! Show us and you may just find a picture of what you shared in the magazine!

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Les

BECOMES

More:

A DEVOTION TO GROWTH “Communion, community, and communication never diminish in importance. Enjoy the extreme bounty available to you in these moments — the amazing wealth that becomes available when you have strength of community.” This gem of wisdom is a little snippet of the parting words in the book, “Plays Well With Others: A Grown-Up Handbook of Improvisation of Play,” just one of several publications authored by Les McGehee, comedian, actor, writer, husband, dad, entrepreneur, real

28 • August 2021

estate expert, coach, and one of the wisest, wittiest, and most delightful people you’ll ever be lucky enough to know. [Full disclosure: I know him as a friend and I work with him, so I know this to be true.] Les is also the president of Rialto Academy, a coaching, training, and education company that empowers entrepreneurs and business owners to meet their full potential, especially those in the real estate and home services biz. In his leadership role in the company and as a Master Coach

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partner spotlight Written by: Anne Marie Hampshire, Rialto Coaching Photos by: Samantha Farris

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Tarrant Real Producers • 29


for executives, top-producing Realtors, PhDs, and entrepreneurs at every level, Les is in his element, and draws on the techniques he’s learned about foundational business models, and as an entrepreneur himself.   “Becoming a coach was a huge thing in my life,” he says. “I had coached hundreds of people in

30 • August 2021

entertainment and business, lightheartedly being called ‘Head Coach.’ Then, when I entered into one-on-one relationships with strong entrepreneurs capable of rewriting the expectations of what pros in their fields could accomplish, it struck me as truly ME. Like the way my Labrador reacted when he realized he could swim. Or the way a bird reacts when it realizes it can fly.”

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Les also infuses his work as a coach, trainer, and workshop leader with his long career as a comedian Along the way, I fell and improv actor. It all in love with the real started in high school, in Canyon Lake, Texas, estate entrepreneurial when his teachers saw opportunity as one of his talent as a writer the best ‘laboratories’ a and actor and practically coerced the business thinker like me reluctant young Les could ever operate in. into participating in theater, which then led to his first standup comedian gig. “One day when I got mad at having to attend an audition that had no role for me, I just decided that day to go get a performance job for myself,” Les recalls. “I called the local comedy club, and they had me do five minutes of comedy in their weird little office. I was hired and stayed on the comedy circuit kinda forever after that.” As a grown-up (kinda), he made his living performing, doing comedy, and working in theatrical design for years before he started ComedySportz, now Austin’s longest running improvised comedy show. He opened a theater, went on tour after tour, saw 325 comedians pass through the company, and even won an improv comedy world championship.   Then, as a “growner” grown-up, he stumbled into a position at Keller Williams International after he spoke at a KW convention. While visiting their HQ in Austin, he was introduced to the leaders of Keller Williams University (KWU), who proceeded to recruit him. Here again, Les was reluctant. “I figured I was unemployable, having been free-range all my life, and I apologized to them for

I still believe that.

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wasting their time!” But after considering the talent within the organization and the opportunity to work with “one of the great entrepreneurial thinkers of our time, Mr. Keller,” he accepted the job. Over the next few years, along with his co-worker, friend, and instructional design whiz Jonathan Moerbe (now co-owner and CEO of Rialto Academy), he wrote several foundational training courses for real estate, culminating in KWU being recognized as the No. 1 Training Team in the world. “Along the way, I fell in love with the real estate entrepreneurial opportunity as one of the best ‘laboratories’ a business thinker like me could ever operate in. I still believe that,” he says. “We do business reviews, study markets, and write articles about opportunity every week.” All this only scratches the surface of Les’ surprisingly eclectic résumé (which also includes owning a chain of clubs, getting a TV deal with Imagine Entertainment, having a book on the MBA reading list, etc., etc., etc.), but you get the gist. For Les, these experiences as a sometimes new leader in wildly different industries are what informs his coaching and consultancy style. He sees success as “all about one thing: it’s about growing the unique opportunities of unique humans. It’s the same in all industries. I see the artistry in business, the business in artistry, and human capitalization generally as one thing.”   This “one thing” focus has clearly paid off for Les’ clients and his quickly growing company. Rialto Academy has logged about 20,000 hours of coaching consultation, grown about $1 billion in wealth, and is home to more than 100,000 Realtors on its virtual campuses. It all comes back to tapping into the

Tarrant Real Producers • 31


often limitless well of human potential, whether it’s a Tarrant County entrepreneur or an international real estate executive. “There are amazing human beings who want to laugh and cry and be with their families and love their hobbies and give back to their communities and stuff like that. To help them, we dive into the potential of the gifts they’ve been given.” For more information about Les, visit lesmcgehee.com or call him at 512.743.4330. For more about Rialto Academy, visit rialtoacademy.com

32 • August 2021

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Tarrant Real Producers • 33


celebrating life Written by: Dave Danielson Photos submitted by: Brandi Dosser, VP Director of Operations, Lawyers’ Title

CH ARLES BR A ZI L

Legacy of Leadership 34 • August 2021

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O

ne life becomes so much more than the short time we are given here. The real impact is the positive influence others feel from our time with them. By any measure, Charles Brazil lived a remarkable life, measured by the countless people he served professionally — and in many other informal and formal capacities throughout the region. Care and Contribution While Charles passed away on May 27 this year, we are honored to celebrate his life and contributions. Charlie was born on November 5, 1965. As he came of age, he attended Dallas Independent School District and graduated from David W. Carter High School. After high school, he went on to earn his Bachelor of Arts and Science in Business Administration from North Texas State University in 1989. While Charles was in college, he developed a passion for community service, pledging to the Wisconsin Sleepers, along with The Chi Phi Chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, and also became a member of the Masons. Engaged Involvement Charles’ deep commitment to building a stronger community was an ongoing part of his life. He was an active part of several organizations, including the Frisco Police Department Advisory Board, Leadership Frisco, as well as serving as Father’s Auxiliary Chair of Jack and Jill of America. In addition, Charles was a member of the Citizens Police Academy, One Voice, and an Ambassador of the Frisco Inclusion Committee. He worked directly with area youth, as well. In fact, he coached the Lady Lions basketball team and also was an iconic presence at Camp Gladiator. He was a central leader at church, as well, having been ordained as an Elder for Life Changing Faith Christian Fellowship Church. He had also served as Deacon, Men’s Ministry Leader, and member of the Leadership Training Institute and the Ignite Youth Ministry.

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Tarrant Real Producers • 35


Warm Memories Here are just a few of the warm thoughts shared by those who knew and appreciated Charles: “To have experienced Charles Brazil as a friend and associate was a joy and a privilege. His leadership could be measured in so many ways. Charles led his life with faith and family. He exhibited kindness, humility, gratitude and a sincere servant heart. In a world where you can be anything, be a Charles Brazil.” -Mike Brodie Owner, Keller Williams (Plano Office)

“Charles Brazil is a great example of how to live your life. He demonstrated an abundance of love for his faith, his wife, and his kids. Each conversation with Charles was extremely powerful. You will truly be missed. In a world where you can be anything, be a Charles Brazil!” -Ray Meeks REALTOR®, Keller Williams (Plano Office)

“My brother and I were very close, we loved each other, supported each other, we counseled each other, we prayed for each other. We had each other’s back in business and outside of business. And we participated in Mega Camps, Family Reunions and Red Days together. People knew that if Charles was around, his brother would be close by, and vice versa. He motivated me to work on my faith and be a better version of myself every day.” -Joe Flores REALTOR®, Keller Williams (Plano Office)

“Charles was a colleague, leader and, most of all, my dear friend. We had many conversations about business, leadership, family and life. I’ll miss him and his bow ties.” -Denton Aguam CEO and Founder of the DARE Network with Keller Williams (Plano Office)

36 • August 2021

“Charles was a leader by every definition of the word. He set an impeccable example of how to be an agent, husband, father, friend, colleague and servant of God. Charles excelled at all of his roles and always did it with a smile on his face! He will be deeply missed by those who knew and loved him. His impact on this earth will far outlive his time here.” -Brandi Dosser Director of Operations/Attorney, Lawyers Title DFW

Truly, those who met Charles Brazil remember him. His was a life of purpose and impact … leaving a true legacy of leadership.

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Tarrant Real Producers • 37


featured agent Written by: Kaitlin Merchant Davison and Anne Marie Hampshire, Rialto Coaching Photos by: Samantha Farris

38 • August 2021

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CH E L S I E Z AC H M A N SYNATS C HK Frogs, Fairmount, & Falling in Love For Chelsie Zachman Synatschk, the path to becoming a top-producing real estate agent in Fort Worth was a long one. And yet, the passion for serving others in this particular way has been within her all along. Chelsie’s journey to where she is today involves humble beginnings, playful pretend, whirlwind romance, a mind-blowing work ethic, and arriving back where she started. All that combined adds up to a lifelong love affair with real estate. As for the beginnings, Chelsie grew up in smalltown Texas and was thrilled (with a little culture shock thrown in) to attend Texas Christian University in Fort Worth (“Go Frogs!” she makes sure to say). There, she earned her degree in Communications, and perhaps that could have foretold her eventual real estate career. Or perhaps it was the fact that during college she and her roommate would tour open houses every weekend, pretending to be buyers. “I don’t think we were fooling anybody,” she says, “but we had so much fun checking stuff out. It was like a little hobby for us.”

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Just after college, she took the plunge and put in her first offer on a house in Historic Fairmount — as a wise-beyond-her-years 23-year-old. It needed a little work, to say the least, but her mom had a vision for it, and Chelsie trusted her mom. “There was literally a T-shirt that was stuffed in a window to keep the draft from coming through. And so, we joked that that was the load-bearing T-shirt,” she says with a laugh. Before she knew it, she was in the middle of a huge renovation, only the first of several more to come in the next decade. “I fell in love with the historic homes and eventually became heavily involved in the neighborhood. The sense of community and love of charming old homes has been a years-long inspiration for helping people find places they can feel at home in.” Now that she was a homeowner, she continued to indulge in her real estate hobby, sending listings to friends and helping them find houses. One of them was a friend named Joe, who kept getting outbid in a hot seller’s market. One day he told

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her that she was so good at finding houses, she should be a Realtor. “And I’m like, ‘Haha, yeah, right. Thanks. that’s sweet of you,’” she recalls. She eventually found a house for Joe, catty-corner from her own house. Little did she know at the time that the relationship would spark, they would begin dating, get engaged within a year, and get married just a few months later. Although Joe encouraged her to look deeper into real estate, it wasn’t until she was pregnant with her first son that she seriously considered it. She had been working for more than a decade for Bonnell’s Restaurant Group as director of Marketing and Events. She loved her job but thought real estate would be a more forgiving profession for the time and energy requirements of a growing family. “I thought I might find a way to enjoy a little more flexibility after adding kiddos into the mix. How naive, right?” She got her license but continued working full-time for Bonnell’s and practiced real estate on evenings and weekends — not to mention being a new mom. It would be another two years, when she was pregnant with her second son, before she decided to go all in with real estate. Joe got his own license at about the same time as Chelsie, and together, they formed a husband-and-wife team with each of their own gifts to share. She remembers feeling confident and ready, but she admits she had no clue what would transpire in the next four years. “At the time, I had no idea how busy I would become,” she says. “I just wanted to make enough to cover daycare costs. It really ended up being an unexpected blessing. And you know, I love what I do. I love my clients.”

Photo by: Mariel Garza with Mariel and Joey Lifestyle Photographer

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The Fort Worth Focused Real Estate Team: Trish Nelson, Renn Traylor, Chelsie Synatschk , and Josephine Salais Photo by: Mariel Garza with Mariel and Joey Lifestyle Photographer

It’s clear how much Chelsie loves her clients, because she puts her heart and soul into helping them, just like she did for her future husband, Joe. She gets nearly all her business from referrals or repeat customers, who gush about her services and skills. “It’s an honor and a surprise every time somebody trusts me with their inner circle,” she says, “but really, it’s just building friendships, taking care of people, and making sure that everybody that I do work with feels empowered and knowledgeable about their situation.” Empowered and knowledgeable: For Chelsie, that means arming her clients with information about the process every step of the way, and communicating early, regularly, and often. It means setting expectations in manageable pieces, and making sure clients feel taken care of, because, “there’s nothing scarier

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than putting your trust in somebody for what’s probably the biggest financial transaction of your life so far.”   Making her clients feel empowered and knowledgeable is what has led Chelsie to take an even bigger step on her real estate path: opening her own brokerage, Fort Worth Focused Realty Estate, in a renovated historic home, back in Fairmount (her very first neighborhood in Fort Worth). She’s currently getting all her systems up and running for her growing business and the new brokerage chapter. All this with Joe ever by her side, her partner and champion from the beginning. “I’m a lucky girl.” Yes indeed, Chelsie. And we of Tarrant are lucky to have you.   To learn more about Chelsie, visit www.fortworthfocused.com or call her at 817.989.6520.

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cover story Written by: Dave Danielson Photos by: Samantha Farris

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Kelly Marcontell & Susan Gilchrest POWERHOUSE PARTNERSHIP

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W

When the pieces of the puzzle fit, they come together to form something special. That’s what those who work with Kelly Marcontell and Susan Gilchrest experience.

Kelly and her husband started their family. For several years, she stayed home with her two sons before joining another builder. That led to work with a developer, where she sold custom homes, with a big emphasis on luxury construction. She also built a strong resale background.

As REALTORS® with Ebby Halliday, Kelly and Susan also came together and formed the Marcontell & Gilchrest Real Estate Group — a true powerhouse partnership. “I don’t know what I would do without Susan. I’ve never been with someone who gives as much to the business as I do. She is amazing,” Kelly says with a smile. “We’ve been best of friends for a long time. Our kids played golf together. I always wanted to work with her. Finally, we did.” Kelly began her real estate career over 18 years ago. Susan began her path in the business in 2007.

me out in the trenches and taught me all things about selling their homes and also the building process.”

Susan’s path to Texas began in the Northeast. “I was born and raised in the New York/Connecticut area,” Susan remembers. “I went to college in Boston, and later went to graduate school for my MBA at Lincoln Center in New York City.”

Susan’s professional career began in consumer product marketing with a major drug manufacturer. She later went into a related sales position and then took off ten years to raise her children. Susan started in real estate in 2007. best of friends for

“Kelly was the first person not on my team that I met when I started in real estate, and we just struck a natural friendship. We We’ve been have been friends profesa long time. Our kids played Those who know and have sionally for a really long the opportunity to work time,” Susan recalls. “Kelly golf together. I always wanted to with Kelly and Susan underwas a listing agent, and I work with her. Finally we did. stand just how special their was a dedicated buyer’s partnership is. It has been agent for ten years. We did an intentional and thoughtso many deals together, ful one since the start. and we just loved working together. We always said wouldn’t it be so fun if we could work together? And then three years ago, we sat “We spent quite a bit of time kind of formulating what our partnership would look like. I think that’s why our down over a margarita and said it’s time.” partnership is so strong because we decided everything about how we would run a business and what we wanted Getting Their Start our business to feel like and look like,” Susan says. “We Kelly and Susan started their paths to the area from feel so fortunate because before coming together, we different locations. both had been in the business for so long, and we both value what this partnership means. We have so much Kelly grew up in Illinois, graduated from Stephens professional respect for each other because both of us College, and then moved to Chicago, where she had so much experience separately. So now, when issues began her career in sales and marketing. In time, she come up, one of us has probably seen it before, you relocated to Texas, where she met and married her know, and we know how to navigate through.” husband, Donnie. In the meantime, Kelly’s career path followed her heart. “I’ve always had a strong interest in real estate,” Kelly explains. “I started working with Ryland Homes, representing their homes for about five years. They put

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The friendship the two have and passion for the profession come through very clearly. “We work seven days a week. It’s helping people and doing what’s best for them. It’s not always selling a house.

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Susan Gilchrest

Kelly Marcontell

Sometimes it’s a conversation where it may not be the right time to sell, or, as a buyer, they may not be able to find what they’re looking for,” Kelly says. “We each give 150 percent to whatever we do and care more than anything about our clients and relationship. One thing that makes Susan and I work so well together is the fact that we are both so different. She is very direct. It’s a perfect fit. We blend so well together. Because we’re so different, it helps us appeal to a broader base of clients.” Getting to the Solution

Sorting through the issues and possible paths takes experience and expertise. It’s a dynamic that Kelly and Susan relish working together on. “We are solutions-based people. When there is an issue, we say here’s our challenge, and how do we find the solution?” Susan says. “We may have this looming issue coming on a deal. What are we going to do ahead of time to solve it? How do we know how can we fix it? Who can we bring 48 • August 2021

in? For us, it’s always trying to be a step ahead with a solutions-based approach to get to the closing table.” The results Susan and Kelly have created are remarkable. In fact, together, they have accounted for over $1 billion in career sales volume combined. In the process, they have ranked as the #1 team across the Ebby Halliday organization for all three years they have worked together … and they consistently rank among the top teams across all brokerages in Texas. What Matters Most

For all of their success in real estate, both Susan and Kelly find true fulfillment through faith and family. “One of my mentors was Bobby Harrell. He always said, ‘You have to constantly be out there in this business, and yet not to miss your kids’ games. Being involved with your family is so important.’ He said the best thing you can do is live your life

and hopefully people will gravitate to you and you will be able to earn their trust in helping them,” Kelly emphasizes. “It’s so fun meeting people from people all over the country. One of the many blessings in our business is all the people we meet, and eventually develop lasting friendships with.” As they consider their exemplary partnership, Kelly and Susan continue to build in service to their clients. “We’re great, great friends, and we love and respect each other. We also have total trust in each other and have each other’s back. We’re 50/50 business partners in everything that we do. I think that it’s easy when you’re commissioned salespeople to just look at money. But for us, we never look at that,” Susan emphasizes. “For us, we look at happy people at the closing table. That’s what we truly care about, and that’s our focus.” That’s what a powerhouse partnership can achieve. @realproducers


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