Prudential California Realty is pleased to congratulate Maria Elena Banks for being elected president of the Orange County Association of REALTORS® (OCAR) for 2012. Based out of Prudential’s Monarch Beach office, Banks draws from 35 years of experience to provide her clients with useful information and valuable guidance about multiple aspects of real estate.
A lobbyist and advocate for issues pertaining to real estate and property rights, Banks serves as the liaison between the California Association of Realtors (CAR) and Senator Mimi Walters and Assemblywoman Diane Harkey. Though her background is in accounting, she was told by her stepfather that she had too much personality to sit behind a desk.
Since earning her license in 1976, Banks has built a reputation in the real estate community based on her sense of responsibility to her clients and commitment to the profession. “I would rather see a person keep their home than earn a commission,” she says. “As president of OCAR I will focus on supporting policies that add to the value of home ownership.”
Banks, who was born in Venezuela and speaks fluent Spanish, added that, “The economic and social benefits of home ownership can’t be underestimated. For every two homes that are sold in the U.S, one new job is created. Additionally it has been found that homeowners are much more likely to vote, become involved in their children’s academic performance and establish crime prevention initiatives.”
Left a widow at an early age, Banks raised three children on her own and serves her community in a variety of ways. She currently sits on the board of directors for the Orange County Child Abuse Prevention Center, and has volunteered for the following organizations: Laura’s House, South Coast Medical Hospital Chairman Circle, Habitat for Humanity, and the Second Harvest food bank.