By Katie Agness

Diane Kennedy, the two-time winner of the ABoR REALTOR of the Year Award, almost considered declining her 2017 award. Having previously accepted the honor in 2001, Kennedy was unsure whether she should participate again. “A close friend reminded me that a peer thought my work was deserving of a nomination, so I should at least submit my credentials and let the committee decide,” Kennedy says. “This time around, I actually feel more deserving because of how much I’ve been able to give back to the Austin Board of REALTORS.”

Kennedy, who doesn’t focus a lot on self-promotion, says that honors like the ABoR REALTOR of the Year Award are very personal for her. “It is such an honor personally because it comes from my peers who know more about what this job takes than any of my customers,” she says.

Before Kennedy began her career in real estate 40 years ago, she worked as a police officer. “After college, a friend challenged me to become a police officer, but my dad, who was a builder, wanted me to consider a career in real estate,” Kennedy says. “After three years as a police officer, I decided to make the change and began working for the real estate company my dad was a builder for. Even though he was there, I still started from the bottom and had to earn my wings.”

For 10 years, Kennedy remained with the small, local real estate company, which stressed training, hard work, and job gratification. “I decided that I needed to transition to a nationally recognized company so that I could take advantage of the corporate relocation moves beginning to come to Austin,” she said. “I have been very lucky to continue my career with Coldwell Banker where the same model of training, hard work, and job gratification continue.”

When she’s not working, Kennedy likes to participate in volunteer activities or spend time with family. “I am lucky to have most of my family close by so that we see each other often,” she says. “If I was not a REALTOR, my career would revolve around helping children or dogs. That is my retirement goal, whenever that time comes.”

Kennedy’s 2018 career goals remain consistent from previous years. “My goals are the same as every year. I want to do the best job I can for every buyer and seller I work with,” she says. “I am always challenged to take advantage of all of the new technology that ABoR and Coldwell Banker offer me, and my goals include learning more of that technology to improve how I do my job for my customers.”

Year after year, it’s the people who drive Kennedy to continue her career in real estate. “Whether helping buyers or sellers, I love the people,” Kennedy says. “I love hearing their stories and dreams, and I love the people I get work with on the business side, some of whom I’ve known for 40 years.”