Fortune Academy
 

About Us – Our Staff and Instructors

Staff

Diane Collins

Diane Collins
Channel Manager

Staff – Diane worked at Horry Georgetown Technical College for 12 years before coming to work at Fortune Academy in December 2016. She has experience in continuing education, and office management. She is also a SC Notary. Diane is single and has three grown children and four grandchildren. Diane is one of the friendly helpful voices you hear when you call Fortune Academy.

Instructors

Amanda Farnum

Amanda Farnum

Real Estate Instructor – Amanda is a licensed Real Estate Broker and has 17 years experience in the real estate field. She also holds a BA in Graphic Communications, an AA in Business Administration, and has also taught on the private university level. She has won several awards for sales transactions and has extensive experience in residential, commercial, foreclosures and investments. When she’s not teaching, she enjoys spending time with family and friends the most. Amanda teaches for Fortune Academy in the Greenville area.

Dale Clift

Dale Clift

Real Estate Instructor – Dale took his first real estate course in Florida at age 20. He has been interested in real estate ever since. It just took a while to find the right time and place. Shortly after starting real estate in South Carolina, Dale realized his goal was to teach, train and coach real estate professionals. Dale’s background in training and management brings a wealth of experience. Dale was responsible for the operations and the teaching and training within the districts. He also helped write the company training policies for some major companies.

Dale has worked for 3 Real Estate companies doing the training and recruiting for 2 of them. He also worked for a national Builder for 2 years as an onsite agent and the broker outreach manager. Dale currently works as business development manager for one of Spartanburg’s largest real estate companies. He teaches, coaches and mentors the agents to help them improve their business.

Dale has been an approved instructor for over 4 years and has taught pre license, post license, broker A, Broker B and continuing education. He also a certified zipForm instructor and has taught zipForms for the Association and various real estate offices. He taught the NAR quadrennial Ethic’s requirement for the Spartanburg Association of Realtors.

Dale’s passion is teaching and helping make others a success.

Ed Leahey

Ed Leahey

Ed following successful tenures in education and the hospitality/resort development industry, The Leahey Faming relocated to Hilton Head Island and initiated long term in-depth involvement in all aspects of property management, land and residential, sales and management and community development. Ed’s career spans involvement in all aspects of the real estate industry and he has received corporate, regional and national sales and management recognition for his efforts. He has a 10 year tenure as an instructor with Fortune Academy and is licensed to teach all of the real estate courses. Ed is currently a Broker-In-Charge of Coastal Realty, specializing in waterfront properties. He has been teaching for Fortune Academy since 2005.

Jenny Linich

Real Estate Instructor – Jenny began her career in real estate in 1985. She holds Broker’s licenses in South Carolina, North Carolina and Arizona and a Bachelor’s degree in Marketing from Arizona State University. Her experience includes new home sales, custom home sales, sales management and general brokerage. She was the BIC for her own company before joining Keller Williams in 2010. She joined Fortune Academy in 2007 and teaches in the Rock Hill/Fort Mill area.

John Hassell

Real Estate Instructor – John Hassell, a native of Charleston, brings 21years of Real Estate experience and a love of the low country to his teaching. He graduated from the College of Charleston and became a Realtor in 1985 specializing in commercial real estate. He has held committee positions at Charleston Trident Area Realtors. John is the Broker-In-Charge of J. Hassell & Associates.

John Kolessar

Real Estate Instructor – John earned his Masters Degree in Education Administration from Seton Hall University in South Orange, New Jersey. He also attended the Masters program in Criminal Justice at Rutgers University, in Newark, NJ. John has been active in Real Estate for eleven and is currently teaching for Fortune Academy in the Beaufort/Bluffton area.

Joseph F. Gobbett, Jr.

Joseph F. Gobbett, Jr.

Real Estate Instructor – Joe started his real estate career in Maryland in 1971. He was a training director and branch sales manager for a multi-office real estate company. As training director, he was responsible for teaching the pre and post real estate license course.

In 1989 Joe opened his own real estate company – Rescom Realtors- as broker in charge and holds G.R.I designation. He has served as an instructor for the Maryland Association of Realtors G.R.I. program teaching “Advanced Financing” and “Investment in Multi Family and Commercial Real Estate”.

Joe has won numerous sales and management awards as well as high ratings as an Instructor. In his spare time he enjoys spending time with his family and playing the sax.

Landon Brent

Landon Brent

Real Estate Instructor – “Landon is the son of Otis Brent, founder of Fortune School of Real Estate. He has successfully instructed over 1,000 Pre-Licensing Real Estate Student/Agents as well as well over 3,000 Continuing Education Student/Agents. He was the first Accredited Buyers Representative, ABR instructor in South Carolina. Has been a Broker In Charge of two successful Real Estate firms with sales totaling well over 100 million dollars. When not sharing his knowledge of the Real Estate business with Fortune student/agents, his interest include Rehabbing/Remodeling investment properties, spreading the word about the importance of having pets spayed or neutered and attempting to create home crafted cabinets, shelves and bird/dog houses for his family and friends.” Landon teaches for Fortune Academy in the Florence area.

Larry Poole

Home Inspection Instructor – Larry is a licensed Home Inspector in SC and travels to various locations across the state teaching Fortune course. Larry also has a real estate license. He belongs to the National Association of Certified Home Inspectors, the National Association of REALTORS, and The Grand Strand Board of REALTORS. He has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from East Carolina University. Larry has lived in the Grand Strand for the past 25 years. He owns a Home Inspection company based out of the Myrtle Beach area.

MaryAnne Dorio

MaryAnne Dorio

Real Estate Instructor – MaryAnne Dorio has been in the real estate industry locally here in Myrtle Beach since 2012. She is a broker/owner of a local real estate company since 2010. Before that she ran the 2nd largest real estate company in Myrtle Beach. There she was tasked with education and training of the Realtors. She has taken her love of real estate and teaching to our students. MaryAnne believes in mastering your craft and has many designations to include SFR, CREN, CCRE, AREP, BPOR, CIAS and CDPE. MaryAnne teaches in the Myrtle Beach location.

Randy Ponton

Randy Ponton

Real Estate Instructor – Randy started in Real Estate in 1996, in 1999 became Broker in Charge of my own RE Co. CRP Realty & Builders. He has a General Contractors License and builds many homes. Randy has been with Fortune since 2004 teaching first years sales and post licensing at Florence / Darlington Technical College and North Eastern Technical College in Cheraw.

Ray James

Ray James

Real Estate Instructor – Ray is a licensed Broker-in-Charge in South Carolina as well as Michigan. He brings more than three decades of commercial, residential and property management experience and with more than15 years in the classroom teaching, students enjoy the learning experience. Ray holds a Masters Degree in Public Administration from Western Michigan University, Bachelors Degree in Political Science from Grand Valley State University and a Fellowship in Political Leadership at Michigan State University. When not helping clients buy, sell or learn about real estate, Ray can be found “horsing around” on the weekends on the American Quarter Horse circuit. Ray teaches for Fortune Academy in the Charleston and Rock Hill area.

Ronnie Davis

Ronnie Davis CPM, CPE-E, NCP-E, NAHP-e, TCS

Real Estate Instructor – Ronnie has more than thirty years in the real estate, construction, education, property management, and brokerage. He has completed numerous multi-family rehab projects as well as several multi-million dollar commercial projects. Ronnie has been a public speaker as well as a trainer for the Air Force Reserves. He is a licensed building contractor in SC and a licensed real estate broker in SC and NC. Ronnie teaches for Fortune Academy in Spartanburg, Greenville, and Greenwood.

Sandy Childs

Sandy Childs

Real Estate Instructor – Sandy grew up in the Greer area of Spartanburg/Greenville County and currently lives in Spartanburg, South Carolina. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in education and taught early childhood education. She has been active in all aspects of the local real estate market for the past 20 years and has vast experience and also holds a Real Estate Broker’s license. She sits on a committee with the Spartanburg Association of Real Estate Agents. Sandy has a passion for teaching and is also a South Carolina Certified Real Estate Instructor and has trained and mentored many of our local agents over the years. With all this experience she has many stories and examples to make the real estate materials come alive in the class room. Sandy has been with Fortune Academy for the past 3 years and teaches Pre-Licensing, Post Licensing and also Property Management classes. Sandy teaches for Fortune Academy in the Spartanburg area.

Sandy

Sandy Jordan ABR, e-PRO

Real Estate Instructor – Sandy is a graduate of Anderson College and previously worked in the Human Resources Department for a local manufacturing company for 12 years and obtained the designation of Professional in Human Resources (PHR). Prior to Sandy’s HR experience, she worked in the banking industry for 7 years. Sandy began her Real Estate Career in 2002 and has been a Top Producer ever since that time. Designations include Broker, GRI, ABR, SFR, and ePRO. Sandy serves on the Professional Standards Committee for her local association. Sandy teaches for Fortune Academy in the Anderson area.

Savonnia Judge

Savonnia Judge

Vonnie is a proud St. John High School Islander who graduated in 2004 from College of Charleston with a BS in Accounting. She has managed small to large corporations such as Centex Home Team in Charlotte, NC to a German international tool manufacturing corporation, Klann Tools, in North Charleston. Her passion for real estate and business motivated her to purse her real estate career in 2004. Vonnie is a reputable Realtor with over her 18 years of real estate and business experience and knowledge. She has held an Accredited Buyer’s Representative (ABR) to coach first time buyers into successful homeowners. In 2008, during the housing financial meltdown, Vonnie became a licensed housing and credit counselor to coach struggling homeowners into regaining control over their financial obligations. Vonnie enjoys empowering others so in 2014, she became a certified real estate instructor in hopes to prepare and develop more responsible real estate agents. She is the proud owner and broker in charge of Sharp Judge Realty Group, a brokerage firm dedicated to build strong communities across the country. Vonnie has been teaching for Fortune Academy since 2015.

Shelby Appleby

Real Estate Instructor – Shelby has been a realtor since 1995, Broker-in-Charge. She retained her seniority when her husband transferred to Beaufort, SC and went to work in the Housing Division for the Marine Corps Air Station. Shelby lived in Washington for 5 years. She retired to Beaufort, SC to be with her family. Shelby took the real estate course and started to pursue her career. She teaches for Fortune Academy in the Beaufort area.

Steve Ranzer

Steve Ranzer

Real Estate Instructor – Steve teaches for Fortune Academy in the Aiken area.

Susan Early

Susan Early

Real Estate Instructor – Susan loves teaching! She spent seventeen years teaching middle and high school students in Orangeburg County schools before moving to the Charleston area in 2002. She began her Real Estate career in Greenville, SC. Susan is applying her love of teaching and her Real Estate experience to teaching adults now at Fortune Academy. When she’s not preparing our students for their state exams, she spends time as a semi-professional photographer taking wedding photos for friends. Always involved with people, Susan was a great asset to her band director husband throughout his 30 year career. She loves gardening so ask her about her favorite flowers.

Terri Anderson

Terri Anderson BIC, GRI, CRS

Staff/Real Estate Instructor – Terri Anderson is owner/BIC of Terri’s Team Real Estate – Anderson’s largest independent real estate company. She has over 16 years of real estate experience and as well as 15 years in Advertising and Marketing. One of Anderson’s top producers! 17 Years in real estate. Certified Real Estate Instructor. Owns Fortune Academy of Real Estate in Anderson. Designations include Graduate of Realtor Institute (GRI) and Certified Residential Specialist (CRS). Area of expertise is working with investors, small and large, development, new home building, commercial, and lake property. She serves on the professional standards committee at her local association. Terri is also a developer and new homebuilder.

Van Harden

Van Harden Broker, CDEI

Real Estate Instructor – First licensed in 1981, Van earned his broker’s license in 1985. He served several years as the Broker-in-Charge of a large general real estate organization. Most of his assignments, however, have been as Broker/Manager of planned residential communities in the Myrtle Beach and Charleston markets. He holds both Bachelors and Masters Degrees in Business Administration. Van is also licensed by the Association of Real Estate License Law Officials (ARELLO) as a Certified Distance Education Instructor (CDEI). Van is approved to teach all Fortune Academy real estate classes. He also serves as the instructor for numerous online courses offered by 360training.com in multiple states. As time permits, he also substitute teaches for Horry County Schools and has accumulated in excess of 800 days of substitute experience. Van was recently honored as “Instructor of the Year” for 2011.

Kimber Smith

Kimber Smith Broker-in-Charge

Kimber received his B.A. in Business Economics from Middlebury College in Middlebury, VT. Having earned his real estate license in 1972, Kimber has been in the real estate field, whether as a sales associate, broker, or instructor, for over forty years. He joined Akers Ellis in 2009. Kimber is a member and past president of the Kiawah-Seabrook Island Exchange Club, serves on the Seabrook Island Property Owners Association Safety & Security as well as Communications Committees, and was on the Seabrook.

Susan A. Lucas

Susan A. Lucas

Married to Joseph for 43 years in April 2016, 2 children. Relocated to Myrtle Beach in 2001. Susan has been licensed as a Real Estate Sales Person since 1979 – Susan was first licensed in New Jersey, then in NY where she worked as a sales agent for Weichert, Realtors in Monroe, NY. Susan relocated to Myrtle Beach in 2001 and has experience as an Agent, Manager, Broker in charge, Trainer, Coach and Property Manager. I hold designations as an Accredited Buyer Agent/manager (ABR/ABRM), Certified residential Broker (CRB). Susan is a Certified Zipforms Instructor.

Past Director of the Coastal Carolina Association of Realtors; Past Chair and current member of the Education Committee of the CCAR; Past member of the Technology committee for the South Carolina Association of Realtors (SCR); Member of the Forms Committee (SCR). Susan looks forward to sharing her knowledge of the Real Estate Industry.

Ellen Toay

Ellen Toay

I have a very unique perspective of the real estate industry as I have been in new home and general brokerage sales and in management. I have also worked as a loan originator, conducted real estate closings and taught for Fortune Academy previously.

Lenny Gaines

Lenny Gaines

Lenny Gaines has been a real estate professional since 2003. He is a broker and has experience in working with residential and commercial transactions. In free time, Lenny enjoys traveling, good music, and catching up on popular television series.

Apryl Haden

Apryl Haden

Apryl Haden has a B.A. from Auburn University, and a M.Ed. from University of Virginia, J.D. Charleston School of Law. She has been a licensed Realtor since 1993; and a broker since 2006. CRS, e-Pro, GRI. Apryl moved to Charleston from TN 2012 and is the Owner/Broker of Apryl Haden Real Estate Group, LLC.

Stacie Farrell

Stacie Farrell

Stacie Farrell joined Fortune Academy in January 2016. She has customer service, administrative and accounting experience in a variety of settings. A native of Southern West Virginia, she married and moved to Northeast Pennsylvania where she spent 15 years. She moved back to West Virginia briefly before moving to Myrtle Beach in 2014. She holds a Regents Bachelor of Arts Degree as well as Associate Degrees in both Business Administration and Legal Secretarial. In her free time, you can find her at a softball or soccer field, a basketball court or a cross country meet cheering for her three daughters, or at home playing with her two rescue dogs.