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Debra Chandler-Protass has been named Southern California Director of Business Development for Weichert Real Estate Affiliates (WREA), the company has announced. Chandler-Protass will support the franchise organization’s Senior Vice President of Business Development Kevin Hill and Regional Vice President June Huber in developing franchise opportunities throughout the region. She is based out of LaQuinta, Calif., where she resides.

In her new role, Chandler-Protass will speak with independent real estate brokerage owners who seek the kind of support and opportunities that are part of the franchise organization experience. She brings decades of real estate experience to Weichert, having begun her career in the Kansas City, Mo., real estate market before relocating to the East Coast and learning the franchise business as director of recruiting with the CENTURY 21 Mid-Atlantic states regional office. Chandler-Protass later became regional director in Maryland and vice president of customer and field marketing for CENTURY 21. In 2001, she moved to California to lead franchise sales for both the CENTURY 21 and ERA brands in 12 western states.

“The selection of a sales representative who is rooted in real estate furthers the ‘in-the-trenches’ model for WREA,” says Hill. “From founder Jim Weichert and WREA President Martin J. Rueter to the entire management staff, our team is made up of people who have been in the field as brokers, office owners, managers and salespeople.”

Chandler-Protass is the 2014 president of the Women’s Council of Realtors® for the Palm Springs/Desert Cities, which provides leadership, mentoring and education to professional REALTORS®, and is a sought-after speaker on the national and international stage.

Weichert Real Estate Affiliates, now in its 13th year as home to a growing roster of independently owned and operated offices across country, is headquartered in Morris Plains, N.J. In January 2013, the company was ranked No. 2 by Entrepreneur magazine among all other competitors in the real estate category in the “Entrepreneur 2013 Franchise 500®” list, an annual ranking of America’s top franchise opportunities.

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