The Coxswain from Philly Powers Her Way to Rye Real Estate
By Robin Jovanovich
Meg Allen Rodriguez hails from Philadelphia. She was, and still is a rower, but made it a point never to date rowers. That is until she met Raoul Rodriguez. “He was different, and he was a gentleman,” she said in a wide-ranging conversation this week about life, love, the arts, and real estate this week.
After they were married, they moved to London, where Meg worked for Northern Trust. She loved her job but when she bore twins prematurely, at 32 weeks, her focus shifted entirely to them.
The family moved to Rye in 2003 for its plentiful access to water, quality schools, and relatively short commute. “We bought a great house, which everyone referred to as the Hogben House, on the corner of Rockridge and Stoneycrest roads. Three months after we arrived, our three kids (the twins, now 25, and their younger brother, 21) were swimming at Durland Scout Center, where the Hogben’s son George was caretaker. We realized we were living in a wonderful small town,” Rodriguez recalled.
It wasn’t long before Meg was on the PTO, eventually pretty much every Rye City Schools’ PTO, and a member of the 15th Twig, which ran the late, great Twig Antiques shop on Purchase Street, and, finally, Smith Street. She was on the board of The Friends of Read Sanctuary and The Rye Arts Center. She helped run a rowing program at American Yacht Club, where she is a member.
“You could say I was a serial volunteer,” she offered lightheartedly.
But in 2015, when the Arts Center was looking for a new executive director, after some serious thinking and conversation with Raoul, she resigned from the board and threw her hat into the ring. “Every town deserves a thriving arts center, and I was excited to make sure ours continued to expand its outreach and prosper.”
As much as she is interested in the arts, Meg loves houses and real estate. “For as long as I can remember, I’ve tracked sales and enjoyed reading about how people live and decide where to live.”
In June 2020, with Covid-19 raging, she decided to accept an invitation to join Berkshire Hathaway as a real estate agent. “Transitioning to the field from the Arts Center wasn’t difficult and I was ready to learn.” She added, “I liked the fact that BH had the reputation of being one of the ‘best places to work’, their focus on integrity, which comes down from Warren Buffett’s work ethic.” She can recite pithy remarks from the ever-quotable “Oracle of Omaha”. She respects the fact that if an employee loses money Buffett will be understanding, but if even a shred of the company’s reputation is tarnished, he will be ruthless.
Admittedly, breaking into real estate during a pandemic had its challenges, Rodriguez acknowledged, but the thread for her is that she’s “a community expert on one of the best places to raise a family.” And further, every agent she has ever worked with has become a friend.
With nearly nine months under her belt, she asserts that fewer open houses and an expanded number of modern technological tools have worked to a residential realtor’s advantage. “There are fewer distractions, and buyers and sellers are serious people who come to you prepared and ready to act quickly.”
When they come, Meg Rodriguez is a one-man band “who crosses every t and never skimps.”
But before she sits down at her computer or with a client, you’re likely to find her out early rowing, always looking forward and knowing where she is going.