C.A.R. recognizes three California REALTORS® as “Champions of Home” for exemplary service
LOS ANGELES (Oct. 9) – The CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® (C.A.R.) today honored three REALTORS® as a “Champion of Home,” a California REALTOR® who has changed their clients’ lives for the better, raised the standards for others, and led by example. In its first year, the award honors REALTORS® who have gone above and beyond the call of duty for their clients and have made a difference in their lives.
“The lengths that George Kenner, PJ Johnsen, and Robyn Webb have gone to, and the compassion and care they’ve given on behalf of their clients go well above and beyond what is expected in the normal course of business,” said C.A.R. President Don Faught. “They set a tremendous example to others for their dedication and passion, and I’m proud to recognize them as our first Champions of Home.”
The three 2013 C.A.R. Champions of Home are:
George Kenner, Keller Williams, San Diego George Kenner has assisted clients through extremely complicated housing problems, even helping a client who lived 100 miles away. In one example, Kenner helped a public school teacher who was on the verge of losing her home after a car accident left her confined to a wheelchair. Kenner used his background as a mortgage lender to find the rules the banks were ignoring and worked hard to get their attention, first by escalating the case to several congressmen, then the Treasury Department, and also to the media. In the end, a positive solution was found for all parties, and the woman was moved to another home down the street that was a better fit for her and came with a smaller loan, which she could more easily afford.
PJ Johnsen, Prudential California Realty, Ione, Calif. With a father who served in the Vietnam War and an uncle who is a retired colonel, PJ Johnsen has made it a mission to help veterans whenever she can. Johnsen began specializing in short sales and VA loans after working as a REALTOR® for a couple of years. Earlier this year, she helped a disabled veteran find a home, but the appraisal came in $30,000 less than they bid, and VA loans are only backed at appraised value. Johnsen persevered by working closely with Fannie Mae and got the veteran and his wife the home for $30,000 less than they offered to meet the financing requirements. More recently, Johnsen helped another veteran and his family sell their home and find another one. The veteran had terminal liver cancer, and his dying wish was to make sure his wife was safely moved into the new home. Johnsen managed to fulfill his wish, allowing the dying man to sleep in his new home and see his wife safely moved in.
Robyn Webb, OC Real Estate 411, San Juan Capistrano, Calif. Despite being in the midst of suffering her own financial hardship, Robyn Webb didn’t hesitate to help others in similar difficult circumstances. Co-owner of a real estate company with her husband, Robyn Webb decided to specialize in short sales at a time when not many people were doing them, hoping to help homeowners come out on the other side of financial ruin. Many of the cases she took on were difficult, inspiring her to rise at 4 a.m. so she could be the first person to call a client’s bank on the East Coast. One couple in a short sale had two loans and four lien holders on their house. The short sale would only have yielded Webb about $600 in commission, but Webb took on the mission of righting a wrong. She escalated the case to higher departments at Fannie Mae four times and finally had to escalate it to the Treasury Department, even offering to sacrifice her commission if the bank would approve the short sale. After helping the couple for over a year, the sale was approved, and the couple’s debt was settled. In 2011, Webb created a non-profit organization, Under Water Home 411, to help people who weren’t good short sale candidates, but still needed assistance. It is funded by her and her husband and has helped almost as many people stay in their homes and avoid foreclosure scams as Webb has helped through the short sale process.
Leading the way...® in California real estate for more than 100 years, the CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® (www.car.org) is one of the largest state trade organizations in the United States, with more than 155,000 members dedicated to the advancement of professionalism in real estate. C.A.R. is headquartered in Los Angeles.