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Spotlight on Curry Team Members That Go Above and Beyond

by Suzanne Licata

Remember when the only time we fastened onto the term “essential workers” was in a weather event like a snowmageddon and the city would say to us non-essential types – stay home, off the streets, make way for the really essential people! We just thought they meant mostly folks like emergency responders, snowplow drivers and Quik Trip employees.

It turns out, that term always included property managers and maintenance staff – the people onsite who make sure the utilities are working, the sidewalks are clear and parking lots passable. Curry Real Estate Services has some of the best. We share here stories of just four, long-tenured, great people. They take such pride in what they do but can hardly think of what is so special about that when we ask. They think, well, it’s just how we do what we do, for others.

Tina Miller
Which sounds longer, 26 years or before there were personal computers? Wow! Both are measures of Tina Miller’s career as a property manager with Curry Real Estate Services where she takes care of the people and property at Manor Ridge and Crysler Plaza East and West.

“I lived next door to Manor Ridge when I started,” said Tina. “I am a very good organizer, but I learned a lot in the beginning – computers, how to use a fax machines back when those were new. I also got handy with small matters like how to light a hot water heater or replace a fuse.”

She has since turned the good fortune of literally being in the right place at the right time, and mad organizational skills inherited from her mother, into property management professionalism that sets the standard.

Tina starts the day responding to early resident queries and ends it, after getting home, answering more. “I don’t like emails and texts piling up so I answer at night,” she said. “I let residents have my cell number, so they text me sometimes. It lets me know their needs in real time so I can take care of them faster.”

That level of attention is something she sees from company leadership. “One thing about Curry, they like their properties kept up,” Tina said. “They care about their properties – want them to look good, be safe and professional.”

Renovations are a big part of holding to that standard. Like other Curry property managers, Tina becomes a ring master of scheduling when major property upgrades are underway, “You have to be considerate of the residents while at the same time respecting how vendors and maintenance prefer to work, and in what order.”

She says those attributes are modeled by her Curry bosses and co-workers. “They are such good people,” she added. “They listen to what I think and are patient no matter how much I bug them. I feel I am part of a team. I’ve been here my whole career but why go somewhere else when you’re happy where you’re at?” Married with four children and five grandchildren ages 3 to 14, Tina likes to spend her free time hanging with the grandkids – “It’s the number one thing I like to do!”

David Eacret
David was running his own handyman business when the opportunity to do maintenance for Curry Real Estate Services came along 15 years ago. Seven kids (and now 13 grandkids!) tends to concentrate the mind around steady work and job security so, he went for it.

“When you own your own business, work tends to come in spurts and then everything is due at once,” he said. “I thought I would give Curry a try.” It seems to have worked out. He does the maintenance at Manor Ridge and Crysler Plaza East and West and goes out to other properties when needed.

“At the time, I thought I pretty much knew all I needed to know to do this job,” David said. “I’ve been working on cars since I was six and ran my own handyman business. I did get my HVAC training with Curry and I like that you don’t always know what you’re going to get into – one day an electrician, next a plumber, after that HVAC, sometimes all three within one hour.”

He likes to get everything throughout the entire multi-family property “fixed” so that he can focus all of his work on preventative maintenance. It’s a standard the Curry company can appreciate, and the feeling is mutual. “Curry offers great job security but having a good boss goes a long way to keeping me here,” David added. “He listens and does what he needs to do to take care of people and property.”

David tells a good story about that boss. David was at one of the multi-family properties that, in extreme weather events, can experience two creeks overflowing their banks at the same time causing flooding in the parking lot. David was there, about 10 p.m. at night, monitoring the situation but called his boss to let him know what was going on. On the phone, said boss told David to look to his left and David spotted him, a bit damp and standing on a railing above swirling water, also onsite making sure the property was taken care. David claims he “rescued” his boss but, that is up for debate. When he’s not working or performing alleged rescues, David says he like to play golf and tinker on his big block Fords (a ’69, ’75, ’79). He says they are drivable though none are his daily car.

Nena Burgard
Nena Burgard was on a mission to work for Curry Real Estate Services. “I live in Liberty, I saw their signs everywhere and researched them, realized how local they are and their good reputation,” she said. “I decided I wanted to work for them.” So, she applied – three times over a couple of years until the perfect job – property manager, and the right time – nine years ago, met the right person – Nena.

“It makes me proud to be with a company that is so popular in my neighborhoods,” Nena said, who serves as property manager for the multi-family communities Cherry Street Studios, Briarcliff Studios and Pinewood Studios. “When people ask me what I do and I say I work for Curry Real Estate Services, they’re like, ‘Oh my gosh, I used to live there, or work there, or leased commercial space from them – they’re so great!””

She’s worked for other real estate companies before and sees the difference. “Every company has a corporate office but Curry’s is different,” she said. “It’s more close-knit. They know who our residents are. They come to our properties. They care to know how things are going.”

Having a proactive mindset helps. “I like to prevent things from arising so they don’t become an issue,” Nena said. “Whether it is maintenance or resident satisfaction, I work to keep things on track so we don’t have emergencies or conflict.”

A balance of kindness and respect is essential when your work is all about people and the quality of their home life, she said. “You have to want to make sure your residents are taken care of,” she added. “If they need something, or we are doing a repair or preventive maintenance, we try to be as responsive as possible, and to get in and out of their home quickly to minimize the interruption.” In her free time, Nena says, “My life is my family.’ She watches her two sons’ football, basketball and rugby games. Indulges her inner food fanatic with home cooking (and looks forward to getting back out to sample all the different area restaurants) and harbors similar dreams for getting back to concerts. “I love everything music,” she added. “There isn’t a music station I wouldn’t listen to.”


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