Longevity in the business world takes a lot of effort. It’s even more difficult when you’re the little guy, an independent working in a field with well-known names backed by bigger infrastructure and corporate support. That’s one of the things that makes Realty Seven‘s celebration of its 40th anniversary in Wilton so remarkable.
The other is the commitment made by Realty Seven’s owner, Wilton resident Peg Koellmer, to countless community non-profits and philanthropic efforts, both personally and on behalf of the real estate agency. While it often makes “business sense” to get involved in such a visible way, the dedication she shows across the wide array of causes goes above and beyond anything that could be called promotional. In recent memory, Realty Seven has helped fund the Wilton Police Department‘s purchase of body cameras and buy furniture for the Wilton Fire Department, and Koellmer worked tirelessly to secure more than 50 bicycles for the Race for Chase program run by the Wilton Family YMCA.
Koellmer is not alone in that dedication to the community.
“I get the pleasure of working every day with about 25 people that I respect and enjoy. It’s a very supportive, dedicated, hardworking group with a wonderful commitment to our community.Our culture is our strategic advantage. Each of our agents volunteers their time to a local non-profit and donates a portion of each commission to the Realty Seven Charitable Fund that they manage as a group. It’s more of a home-like environment than most offices where our whole office works as a team in all aspects of their business,” she says.
After a career as an operating room nurse, Koellmer began working in Wilton’s real estate market in 1990.
“My husband’s family has been in the construction business for three generations so when my father-in-law asked me to get my license it seemed like a good idea for some part time work. It didn’t turn out that way. It was full time from the very start but I still had enough flexibility so I could be there for the children when they were young,” she recounts.
Koellmer took over Realty Seven as owner ten years ago. Preferring not to compete with her agents, she’s very involved with several professional organizations both here in Wilton, and at the Fairfield County and state level. She not only holds a seat on CT Realtors’ Board of Directors, she was recently named the chair of the Grievance/Professional Standards Committee, and is president of theMid-Fairfield County Association of Realtors.
“I love the different facets of the job, it’s different every day. One day I may be teaching, another working on a merger committee for the state MLS, or participating in hearings as a member of a professional standards and Ethics panel. and have a seat on State Board of Realtors. I really enjoy getting to know agents from other communities, as well as learn about the communities they serve,” Koellmer says.
Within Wilton she is a past president of the Wilton Chamber of Commerce, past president (and current board member) of Wilton Go Green, and member of the Kiwanis Club, among other organizations. Koellmer has also served as a Wilton Social Services commissioner and on the board of the Wilton Historical Society, Wilton Library and Wilton Volunteer Ambulance Corps, among others.
Anniversaries are often a time for reflection, and Koellmer has her share of memorable work experiences.
“I once showed a house where, unbeknownst to me, a family member had overslept and decided to hide in the closet! I almost had a heart attack when I opened it to show the buyers how spacious it was. Another time, it was my first listing, the homeowners were going through a contentious divorce and he didn’t want to sell. I made an appointment to show the house and when he opened the door, let’s just say, he was underdressed for the occasion! I had also asked him to paint his office, so he did. He spray painted the entire thing included the furniture, books, floors, stairs, walls and ceiling, metallic silver.”
Realty Seven is being celebrated at a Wilton Chamber of Commerce Business After Hours today, Thursday, Aug. 30, at 5:30-7 p.m., where State Sen. Toni Boucher will present Peg Koellmer with a state citation.