Getting to Yes
Under Cheryl Temple’s watch, the downtown area of Orting, Wash., has been restored to its former glory. The once-dirty streets have been cleaned up, new lamp
posts have been installed, additional turn lanes were paved to alleviate congestion,
and a spruced-up park is now teeming with children. In the last eight years, Orting
has become a modern small town.
So why does Temple deserve so much credit for Orting’s transformation? Since
2005, the sales associate with Coldwell Banker Bain in Puyallup, Wash., has also
served as the mayor of Orting, a town of about 7,000.
“I’ve always wanted to do both,” says Temple, SFR, of her positions as mayor
and real estate professional.
Temple, who earns only $1,000 a month from her part-time gig as mayor, pursued
public o;ce to change things that rubbed her the wrong way. “We were saying no to
outside partnerships—to partnering with the state, the school districts, the county—
to make the city better,” Temple explains. “When you have those doors closed, you
miss out on a lot of growth. I thought, ‘ We need to get outside ourselves.’”
She has focused much of her e;ort on a particular issue: flooding. Orting, nes-
tled between the Carbon and Puyallup rivers, has endured massive flooding three
times in the past 20 years. As mayor, Temple has been able to secure grant funding
for the largest project in Orting’s history: building a levee between the two rivers to
stave o; flooding. The construction is slated to begin at the start of 2014.
Temple got into real estate four years ago, after she already had four years under her belt as mayor. In that time, she built a sta; of “rock stars” who, she says,
have helped her manage her municipal duties. That makes it easier for her to use
her evenings for showings and client meetings. And though she is mindful not to
exploit her position as mayor to benefit her real estate business, she concedes it
has created some opportunities.
“I have gotten a couple deals because of who I know,” Temple admits. “Having
that title [as mayor] does o;er a little more oomph in getting deals. ... People enjoy
knowing that about me, but I never make it more than that.”
42 REALTOR® NOVEMBER / DECEMBER 2013 RealtorMag.REALTOR.org
pursue public roles
By Graham Wood
Read more about REALTORS®
who are making an impact
through charitable endeavors.
(See 2013 Good Neighbor
Award Winners, page 29)
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