Ginger and David Dean might be considered something of a real estate power couple: she currently serves as Litchfield County Commercial Realtors’ vice president, and both of them are owners and brokers at the firm. However, if you ask David Dean, he’ll tell you she’s the real backbone of the operation.
“She is smart, personable and brimming with a ‘can-do’ attitude. She is irreplaceable,” he wrote in his nomination of his wife for The Commercial Record’s 2016 Women of FIRE awards.
But the 33-year veteran’s real estate career almost never was; the Torrington native was a young, divorced mom of two when a friend in real estate pushed her to get her license. Dean had some college experience and had worked a series of odd jobs, but the friend’s selling points of flexible hours and a friendly boss helped convince her.
“She said, ‘You need to come to work for David – you’ll love him,’ and of course I came to work for David and fell in love with him and we got married,” she recalled.
When she first began, the firm only had between eight and 12 employees, but Dean and her husband grew the firm to a high of 50 employees when they bought a Coldwell Banker franchise, Coldwell Banker Bredice and Dean. “It really was just a fabulous franchise,” she said. “The training and the materials available to us for running our office and for our agents was just far superior to anything we were ever used to.”
While she notes that the move to a larger downtown office was “frightening,” she also describes the location’s opening as one of her fondest career memories. “The city of Torrington was having a downtown week … and we had the ballet company come over and do a little spot for us, and we had a fashion show one year. We had no idea the number of people that were going to come through our door at that point. It was just enormous.”
The franchise was named the number one Coldwell Banker office in Connecticut in 1992 and served as the county’s top full-service firm for a number of years before the Deans sold it in 2004 to focus on commercial and industrial real estate and brokerage deals.
Yet while Dean looks back on the big franchise moments fondly, she also notes that her favorite part of her job is the day-to-day tasks that keep the office up and running. “I love all the varied aspects of the job,” she said, explaining that her days in the office are “challenging and never boring.”
Now, Dean says she is “humbled” by being chosen as one of The Commercial Record’s 2016 Women of FIRE. “After years of tenacious work and education, in good markets and bad, I feel like I have my achieved my piece of the American Dream,” she said.