Real Estate Broker Of The Year 2015

Award winners3

Martha Appel
Real Estate Broker
Of The Year 2015


Why did you choose a career as a residential real estate broker?
I didn’t choose a real estate career; it chose me. After graduating from college, I immediately started looking for a job, but quickly found that my Math Degree was not opening many doors. I landed my first job as an office administrator at Tom Fannin Realty and the rest is history.

My primary focus has been on the legal/corporate side of the business. I obtained my broker’s license as a personal goal, not knowing at the time that it would play an integral part in my life. When I became the Designated Broker of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage in 2005, I fell in love with the challenge of supervising, educating and supporting thousands of agents throughout the state.

I quickly found that making a difference in my agents’ real estate careers was very gratifying. I have a deep commitment to staying well informed on changes in the industry and making my agents the best and most professional practitioners possible. My participation in many Arizona Association of REALTORS® risk management committees, along with MLS and regulatory committees, has kept my finger on the pulse of Arizona real estate, makes me a better broker and fulfills my commitment to serve the needs of my agents and company.

What are your top 3 ingredients for success as it relates to your field?

  1. Care first.
  2. Listen well.
  3. Educate myself and others.

What is your philosophy on community service and your favorite local cause – and why?
There are many less fortunate individuals in our own backyard. Volunteering might just give one recipient renewed hope that can change his/her life forever.

One of my favorite local causes is Habitat for Humanity. Our company built a home for a family a few years ago. I personally assisted the family in obtaining used furniture from some of our sellers at the time. I also had the opportunity to visit the family shortly after they moved in. Their gratitude, pride of homeownership and their children’s huge smiles as they showed me their new bedrooms was one of the most rewarding experiences in my life.

In what ways would you suggest someone can give back to the real estate industry?
Get involved in a REALTOR® Association at any level or a local MLS. Volunteer on a committee; become a voice.

What is your most memorable Arizona news story/headline and why?
“Yarnell Fallen Firefighters” (Jun. 2013). Our communities throughout the state came together in the outpouring of prayers and aide in the face of grief and adversity. Those fallen heroes touched the lives of Arizonans and will never be forgotten.


Martha Appel has been the Vice President & Designated Broker at Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage since 1997. She can be reached at 480-481-8400 or by email at