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home : business : business May 26, 2018

5/8/2018 1:30:00 PM
Making a big jump into a new career
By Jim Cornelius
News Editor

Jim Goodwin and Jennifer McCrystal are well-known to most folks in Sisters - Jim as a musician and Jen as a restaurateur. Now, they're both raising the curtain on the second act in their Sisters lives - signing on as real estate agents at Coldwell Banker Reed Bros. Realty.

The jump from the life of a career musician into real estate might seem like a tremendous leap, but for Jim Goodwin, it's actually a return to his roots. His uncles Dave and Sam Goodwin were legendary real estate figures in the Sisters community - and his father, a federal judge, made one of the most important decisions in the modern history of the industry.

Goodwin told The Nugget that Mike Mansker, Principal Broker at Coldwell Banker Reed Bros. Realty approached him about selling real estate - catching Jim by surprise.

"I said 'I don't know anything about real estate,'" Jim recalled. "He said, 'it's in your genes' - because he knew my uncles."

Dave and John Goodwin founded Goodwin Brothers Real Estate in Sisters in the 1970s. Sam joined them in the early 1990s, and Dave and Sam operated Sisters Real Estate out of an office where Suttle Tea is now. They were known for their integrity, honesty and low-key approach to real estate sales.

"They're a really good guidepost for me. Obviously, that's just a great model for me to strive for," Goodwin said. "I just ask myself, 'what would Sam and Dave do'?"

In addition to his uncles' background, Jim's father, Ted Goodwin, a federal judge who has owned a home at Sage Meadow since 1990, made the Starker Ruling, which was eventually confirmed at the Supreme Court.

"People know it as the like-kind exchange in real estate," Jim Goodwin said.

The decision had enormous economic impact, as it allowed people more options for dealing with their real estate investment property.

"He considers that his greatest hit," Jim told The Nugget with a wry smile. "We always put everything in musical terms in my family."

With his pedigree, Jim signed on with Mansker's outfit and "it was the beginning of drinking from the fire hose. It's been a real challenge, but it's fun. It's exciting."

Jennifer McCrystal has been in Sisters for 12 years. She is noted for creating one of Sisters' iconic dining establishments - first known as Jen's Garden and then becoming The Cottonwood Café. She sold The Cottonwood Café just a couple of months ago and made a major career shift.

For her, too, it was not quite as big a jump as it might seem on the surface.

"It's one of those things I wanted to do since I was a teenager," she told The Nugget. "It's always sort of been in the back of my head."

McCrystal grew up on a ranch and has managed large properties, so she's comfortable with an understanding of what property can mean to people.

And she's also comfortable landing at Coldwell Banker.

"One of the things that I love about Coldwell Banker is that it's a cornerstone business in this town," she said. "It's an office that has a really strong connection with this town."

The career shift was in the works for a while. She got her real estate license before she sold the restaurant.

"I got it, then I sat on it for a while, and then when the sale of the restaurant happened, I said, 'It's time to pull the trigger,'" she recalled.

A three-hour-plus conversation with Mansker led her to decide to join Coldwell Banker.

"This felt like a really good fit," she said.

Both Goodwin and McCrystal say that they've found the environment at Coldwell Banker very supportive.

McCrystal is well positioned to make a mark in her field quickly. She knows a lot of people in Sisters through her restaurant career, and they have a high regard for her, giving her a ready-made potential client base. And relationships are what she believes will carry her into a fruitful second career in town.

"I want long-term relationships with people because they trust me," she said.

For more information, call Coldwell Banker Reed Bros. Realty at 541-549-6000.

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