Under the leadership of CEO Merri Jo Cowen, My Florida Regional MLS underwent a major rebranding and relaunched as Stellar MLS in 2019.
According to Cowen, the rebranding of the organization and reimagining of what a customer-focused MLS looks like was hugely successful, demonstrating why the MLS is "stellar" and laying the foundation for further innovation. Stellar MLS currently serves nearly 60,000 customers, including agents and brokers in 16 REALTOR® associations throughout Central and Southwest Florida and one in Puerto Rico.
“I am passionate about the real estate industry, and, most especially, the MLS,” says Cowen. “I have been working in the MLS space for over 30 years and recognize the value that an MLS can provide to its customers—and the need, as many others in this part of the industry also recognize, to be moving toward the future in such a way as to remain a valued resource and advocate for our customers. Standing still and watching others evolve is simply no longer an option.”
Cowen’s career dates back to 1983, when she was hired as a part-time MLS clerk. She eventually became the first CEO of the Northern Nevada Regional MLS and, in 2008, was selected as CEO of My Florida Regional MLS (now Stellar MLS). In addition, Cowen has served as president of the Council of MLS twice and the former MLS Domains Association. She’s also on several MLS-related boards and committees, including at the National Association of REALTORS® and MLS Grid.
"If it's about MLS, I'm involved," she says.