By CHARLENE PAUL
Moapa Valley Progress
Local real estate agent, Clea Whitney was recently featured on “The American Dream”, a reality television show created by realtor Craig Seewing to showcase the human side of real estate.
Dressed in a bright pink top and looking calm, cool, and collected, Whitney answered questions about herself and her work. The episode was aired last week on network television.
Some time ago, Whitney was sent an email invitation to be a part of the show. She was identified for the invitation because she had been recognized as one of the top 50 agents in the Las Vegas market for the first quarter of this year.
What the show’s producers didn’t realize was that Whitney works almost exclusively in a rural real estate market.
“They had no idea I was out here,” Whitney said. “They just thought I was another Las Vegas realtor. But when they found out, they liked the idea. They thought it would be awesome to have that smaller town perspective in there.”
Whitney’s appearance on the show last week was not just a one-time thing. The program is set up to be an ongoing conversation creating an open discussion where realtors from across the country weigh in on the intricacies of their individual markets. Whitney will meet in the studio each month, at least for the first year of the program, to talk about the uniqueness of the real estate market in the small, rural Moapa Valley. She is one of twelve real estate professionals that will represent the southern Nevada market on the show.
When push came to shove and it was time to actually appear on the program, Whitney said that she got very nervous. “I am very friendly, and I like to talk,” she explained, “but I don’t like speaking in front of crowds. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to do it.”
Newly engaged, Whitney’s fiancé encouraged her to take the leap. “You can do this,” he said.
With that encouragement, Clea sat down in the chair for her television interview.
Turns out she was a natural. She spoke clearly and intelligently and represented her business and her community well.
“A lot of the others brought notes with them of what they were going to say,” Whitney said. “I was so busy in the time beforehand that I didn’t even think about putting anything like that together. I just had to sit in the chair and wing it. I was there for only about 15 minutes. From that, the editing staff put the interview together.”
Whitney was raised in Moapa Valley and, at one point in her life, she was working in a business where she was the truck boss, she attended safety meetings, and she was also the office manager. “They were making the big bucks,” said Clea. “But one year I didn’t make what I had previously made on my bonus. I knew I needed to do something different where I could be my own boss. Real estate just fit.”
When she started in the business, Whitney was a single mom with two small kids. It took seven months to complete her first sale. During that time, she wondered what she had been thinking when she chose her new career. But she kept at it, often cleaning up the properties she was listing and even putting up her own signs.
“Some of the agents in Las Vegas are surprised to hear that I took my hammer and posted my own signs,” Clea said. “They couldn’t imagine it.”
Choosing to stay in the rural areas of southern Nevada was a natural choice for Clea. Since she grew up in the Moapa Valley, everyone knew her and she says that referrals have been her best asset.
Clea definitely brings the human side of real estate to her business. “Clea is the best,” said Emily Leavitt of Moapa. And people all over the community agree.
We look forward to seeing her on future episodes of “The American Dream.”