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He Was a Farmer Before Real Estate

Posted by NSDCAR in Blog, News | 0 comments

Ron Brownell, NSDCAR 2017 Board Director

You may know Ron Brownell as the 2017 chair of NSDCAR’s Local Government Relations (LGR) Committee. The Committee interacts with elected officials and government agencies on relevant real estate-related issues and concerns that pertain to the NSDCAR market area. The Committee also helps shape the Association’s public policy agenda with strategic monitoring of critical legislation as well as endorsements and advocacy efforts. Ron has served on the LGR committee for the past three years. He also serves the NSDCAR Risk Reduction Committee. He also holds the current longevity record (17 years) as a member of the Sandicor board of directors. He also serves on Sandicor committees, including MLS Grievance Committee and Technical Users Group as chairman. He also has served as a California Association of REALTORS® director for the past 21 years.

But did you know that Ron once oversaw operations for the Brownell family’s 1,500-acre farm in the Imperial Valley community of Brawley? “For about 10 years after high school, I ran the family farm and we grew alfalfa, wheat, sugar beets, cotton and corn,” said Ron. “But, my farming days came to an end. Today, we don’t even have a home garden other than growing a few tomatoes from time to time.”

When farming ended in 1983, Ron ran a Dyno-Tune automotive repair shop in Escondido and then sold tools for about five years with the Matco Tools, Inc. “Then I got the bug again to make a change and a buddy recommended real estate, so I went from selling tools to selling houses,” said Ron, who has worked in the profession since 1989.

He didn’t wait long to get involved with the Escondido Association of REALTORS® (he has lived in Escondido since 1983). In 1991, he joined the Escondido Association board of directors, and served as its Association President in 1996, the year when the Association merged with NSDCAR. He sold homes from 1989 to 1998, and then switched his career focus to real estate management. Today, his title is director of compliance with Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Signature Homes and Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate McMillin Realty.

In June, Ron and wife Diane will celebrate their 44th wedding anniversary. “I was 19 and she was two months shy of turning 17, so we had to get her parents’ permission for the marriage license to be valid,” said Ron.

Ron and Diane raised a son and daughter, both whom have one child apiece. Ron and Diane’s two grandchildren include a 22-year-old granddaughter who recently graduated from college and a 12-year-old grandson.

Over the years, Ron has pursued various recreational hobbies. “For a few years, we rode dune buggies over the sand dunes in the Imperial Valley and one time we took Navy pilots from the Blue Angels on a ride,” Ron said. “They reciprocated the favor and I spent four days on the Ranger aircraft carrier, it was a great experience.”

Ron also was a stock car racer driving a ’57 Chevy on dirt tracks in Imperial Valley, El Cajon and Chula Vista. He also once owned a 2002 Harley-Davidson Deuce motorcycle. He also was a private pilot and flew with a friend in a single-engine Beechcraft Bonanza cross country to the Bahamas. He also owned a Jeep for rock crawling at Big Bear, Borrego and Ocotillo Wells (rock crawling is an extreme form of off-road driving using highly modified, four-wheel-drive vehicles to bounce over boulders and rock piles, as well as mountain trails and foothills). When the kids were young, they also enjoyed river rafting over rapids on the Rogue River in Grants Pass, Ore.

“Yes, I’ve had a lot of fun over the years,” said Ron. “We’ve come a long way since Brawley High School, class of 1972.”

Ron is definitely a big-time supporter of NSDCAR. “Our Association has been important to me throughout my entire career,” he said. “The range of services and available training provided to our members are unsurpassed. I’ve always believed in giving back to our profession and getting involved our Association is an excellent way to do that.”

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