Creating Change Starts With Us

REALTOR® Magazine guest editor Stefanie Hahn looks at the tremendous impact real estate professionals can have on the world around them.

November 2, 2013

In 2002, I was at an impasse. My dot-com tech job was evaporating, and I needed a new game plan. While job-hunting, I volunteered with Relay for Life on behalf of the American Cancer Society in the Philadelphia suburbs, doing everything from setting up a Web site to setting up tents. At the Relay, I met my first broker. We connected because we both enjoy giving back to the community. She needed someone to manage the technology end of her new real estate team. My “temporary job” soon had me sitting for the real estate licensing class.




Today, I’m education, social media, and e-team co-director for Coldwell Banker Hearthside, REALTORS®, in the Philadelphia area, where I help more than 450 agents in 15 offices navigate technology and hone their sales skills. That work led me to write for the magazine’s YPN Lounge blog and Web site—and eventually to this role as guest editor for the “Good Neighbors” issue. I am moved by these powerful stories of REALTORS® making the world a better place. My own involvement with the Relay for Life instilled in me a lifelong commitment to helping others and, as a REALTOR®, I consider that part of my mission.

As part of the Pennsylvania Association of REALTORS®’ October Reach Out program, which encourages members to get involved in their communities, our state and local Young Professionals Networks partnered with Move for Hunger, which stocks local food pantries with nonperishable food items left behind when people move. The campaign was launched four years ago by Adam Lowy and his brother Max, whose family owns a moving company in New Jersey. I met Max in 2010 when I was teaching a class at a Women’s Council of REALTORS® event. He was scheduled to speak before me but experienced a sudden technology meltdown. I put his presentation on my iPad, and he was up and running. His talk opened my eyes to a possibility hiding in plain sight: I persuaded my YPN colleagues that we could help create the change Max was seeking.

Connecting with a cause that resonates for you not only helps the less fortunate but also gets you in front of your community, which is a key part of building a strong business. And you just might come across someone at an impasse whose life you could touch profoundly. 

Stefanie Hahn

Stefanie Hahn is the vice president of operations at Coldwell Banker Hearthside, REALTORS® in Collegeville, Pa. Visit her Web site: