I was born and raised in New Jersey but I had a real passion for skiing, and so chose to move West and go to the University of Colorado, Boulder where I completed my BS in Marketing in 1993. Twelve years later, I found myself still living in Colorado! In March 2000, however, I took a ski trip to Grand Targhee and five months later, my life took a new twist when I moved the small mountain town of Driggs, Idaho and took a job at Grand Targhee as an Internet Sales/Group Sales person.
For all I loved Colorado skiing, I have never experienced snow as great as Grand Targhee. With over 500 inches of snow a year, I skied many powder days. After three great years at Grand Targhee, I decided to move on to the next challenge, getting my real estate license and finding dream homes for folks like me.
During the same period of time, a year after I moved to Driggs, I met my wife Shannon. We were married in July 2003. Shannon moved to Jackson Hole from New York City, after completing her MBA at Stanford. She worked at the Four Seasons Residence Club at Jackson Hole, where she was the operations manager. She was born and raised in Alberta, Canada, and also loved to ski. Along with Shannon came two horses, a wedding gift from her father, and a new appreciation for the cowboy lifestyle (and yes, country music too!).
Shannon and I were very happy living in Teton Valley with all of its natural beauty and small town community. However, after a few years, we realized if we were ever going to pay off our combined student loans, we would need to pursue further career opportunities in a more urban location. We found in Ski magazine an article a bout Reno being a ski town due to its proximity to amazing Lake Tahoe, so we decided to give Reno a try. So, we packed up our three Labrador Retrievers, Blazer, Chuck and Bristol (All Adopted) and our two horses Lady and Rusty, and moved to Northern Nevada.
We needed to buy horse property in Reno, and found Rancho Haven on Red Rock Road to be a good match. I was a Realtor then with Keller Williams Group One Realty from April 2004 April 2006 where I gained valuable experience, primarily with ranch and country properties, becoming an expert on well and septic systems, as well as water rights, fences and other country property issues. I was a Top Producer with Keller Williams and won many awards in 2005 and 2006. I finally decided to pursue my dream of working for myself and opened Reno Rancho Realty on May 2nd, 2006. Our weekends consisted of horseback riding in the summer and skiing in the winter along with spending time with dogs. However, when the financial crisis hit in 2007, I quickly learned I would need to sign up shortsale and REO clients in order to survive it. Over the following years, I become one the top REO Brokers in the state, with several corporate and REO clients that kept me extremely busy 24/7 through the downturn. While it was great to be successful, it was emotionally challenging to be so close to the fallout of the crisis.
That said, in 2009, we took a cruise vacation in the Eastern Caribbean where we had a stop in St Thomas, US Virgin Islands. We loved our day there and four months later, we purchased a home there, it was the perfect escape as it was a tropical paradise under familiar US laws. It was fully rented at the time and was purchased as an investment with the intent of moving down to the Virgin Islands much later. However, in 2010 we had a vacancy and lived in the house for a week before realizing we needed a much needed renovation. I ended up staying for 3 months and fell in love the island living. This began our frequent trips to visit our house.
In January 2012, we made the decision to shut down our brokerage in Reno and move to St Thomas full time with our two dogs, Bristol, who was adopted from the Teton Valley shelter back in 2003, and Bo Peep, who was adopted from the Nevada Humane Society in 2005.
In April 2013, I opened the doors to America’s Caribbean Realty as the owner and broker. I specialized in the sales and management of Luxury home villas on St Thomas, mostly working with part time residents. I also specialized in commercial leasing while servicing the needs of IGY Marina’s two upland office/retail properties. 2014 also saw the start of of Wahoo Boat Charters, where I was the owner of the boat and a USCG licensed captain. I ran snorkeling trips to St John’s National Park and coral reefs for cruise ship passengers.
By the end of 2015, I was getting antsy with being confined to life on a 13 mile long island in the Caribbean. I had always missed Boulder and knew that someday we would return. The Virgin Islands are not very dog friendly, both the culture and the geography, with no room to run and the tropical elements wreaking havoc on their skin. I scheduled a trip in April 2016 to see how Colorado was doing after the past 16 years.
Well, our trip was a smashing success, we both found Colorado to be even better than it was 16 years ago! I brainstormed the idea to start a dog friendly real estate brokerage in Colorado. To give back to the animal shelters and rescue groups that have touched our lives and so many others in our community. To sell real estate in a state I am passionate about.
Now we live in our house in The Winter Park Highlands, just past Tabernash and love our views and our space of 2 acres and XC and Mountain Bike trails right out our back door.
So here I am, back to Colorado, ready to help with all your real estate needs, both residential and commercial!
About The Wisedogs
As mentioned, we moved from Idaho to Reno with our three adopted Labs in tow. After a serendipitous trip to the Reno animal shelter in 2004 to adopt another dog after Blazer died, I found myself getting involved with Lab Rescue through various organizations throughout Reno. It was Blazer’s legacy to me. As a result, we ended up with three more rescued Labs in Reno, Sadie a yellow, Dakota a chocolate and Bo Peep. All have since passed except for Bo Peep (Bo Peep passed away in 2018), and we recently added Chukar and Blake from a shelter in NC in 2013, black and yellow Labs. In 2014, we added Bugsy to the pack, a coconut retriever (a whippet mix?!) that had lived for 11 months at the Humane Society of St. Thomas shelter where Shannon was a frequent volunteer and board member. We couldn’t let her hit the one year mark in jail. In 2015, we added Speedy, a black lab whose family left this 8 year old boy behind on the island when they returned to live stateside. I have stayed involved with animal rescue groups and animal rights issues for twenty years. Blazer Real Estate’s charitable giving pledge is my way of continuing to give back.
Blazer Real Estate, LLC Owner/Supervising Broker
Tabernash and Boulder, CO June 2016 Present
- Boulder’s FIRST Dog Friendly Real Estate Brokerage (supporting animal welfare charities with every sale)
- Residential and Commercial Real Estate Broker, Property Management
- City and Country properties
America’s Caribbean Realty, LLC Broker/Owner
St. Thomas, VI April 2013 Present
- Luxury Villa Sales and Management
- Condominium Sales and Consulting.
- Commercial Leasing for IGY Marinas of their uplands Shopping and Professional Centers for its St. Thomas properties.
Reno Rancho Realty LLC – Broker/Owner
Reno, Nevada May 2006 June 2012
- Owner and Managing Broker of one of the top producing brokerages in Northern Nevada
- Top REO Listing Broker for corporate clients including: Fannie Mae, Indymac Federal Bank, Atlas REO, GRP (Sallie Mae), Equity Point, American Home Mortgage Servicing.
- Additional focus on closing successful short sale transactions for buyer and sellers in a challenging market
- Sold over 800 homes in 6 years, consistently ranked in Top 10 Agents in Northern Nevada
Keller Williams Group One Realty – Salesperson
Reno, Nevada May 2004 May 2006
- 2006 1st Quarter Top Producer Reno for Keller Williams Group One
- 2006 1st Quarter Top Listing Agent by Dollar Volume for Keller Williams Group One
- 2006 1st Quarter Top Listing Agent by Number of Units for Keller Williams Group One
- 2005 Top Listing Agent Award for Keller Williams Reno (180 Agents!)
- 2005 National Keller Williams Double GOLD Top Agent Achiever
- 2005 Keller Williams Capper Club Member
- Received the “Keller Williams Rising Star 2004 Award”
Grand Targhee Ski Resort – Group Sales and Internet Marketing
Alta, Wyoming Nov 2000 – Oct 2003
- Responsible for generating group sales primarily through internet marketing
- Implemented technology solutions for room bookings and activity reservations
- BS in Marketing The University of Colorado at Boulder, 1993
- Elementary Education Teaching Certificate The University of Colorado at Boulder, 1997
& their Real Estate Advice
I’m Chukar from North Carolina and I was named after a great dog legend called Chuck who Ken rescued from a backyard chain in Ft. Lupton, Colorado fifteen years ago. Those are big paws to fill and so I am a bit insecure and I cover that up by acting crazy, keeping ‘em on their toes. They call me Napoleon around here. I like to be perched up high, surveying my kingdom. So I’d say a nice view is the most important thing I look for in a house.
I’m Blake, Chukar’s brother and partner in crime. I am a big clumsy goof ball who loves to do gymnastics and so prefer a house with an open great room concept. I need lots of room for my somersaults and my adoring fans to gather.
I’m Speedy, and maybe you can tell by my name, but I like to run! I lived for eight years as an outdoor dog alone on a concrete pool deck before Ken rescued me. So I used to have a reason to run. Now I just do it for fun! Give me people who love me, a big yard, with lots of grass to roll in, and I’m a happy boy. So don’t forget to look for a big grassy backyard in your next home.
I’m Bo Peep and I’m a sweet old lady, but also scared of a lot of things like thunder and fireworks and strangers. When I’m scared, I seek shelter in the safety of bathrooms. Embarrassing but true. So for me, don’t overlook the importance of a spacious and comfortable bathroom in your next house, you never know when you’ll need to camp out in there. (Bo Peep passed away in 2018, but will always be a part of our team!)
Hi, I’m Bugsy. I was raised by iguanas in the bush of St. Thomas (I’m only half kidding), had puppies of my own, then was trapped and lived nearly a year in a concrete kennel at the island’s animal shelter. Now I’m a normal dog, I like living in a house, getting belly rubs and sleeping in soft beds. I’m supposed to say what I prefer in houses, but really I like any house, seriously I’m just grateful to be here. I’m actually just trying to look cute and hope my cuteness inspires you to throw your donation dollars to the Humane Society of St Thomas. Or… even better, consider adopting an island puppy or dog just like me through their Pets With Wings program. My dad Ken will make all the arrangements for transportation and you can adopt a coconut retriever of your own to help you make your new house a real home!