We had the good fortune of connecting with Brooke Benson and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Brooke, what habits do you feel play an important role in your life?
I am pretty methodical about time management. Work/life balance is really important to me (that balance has shifted over the years back and forth) so I make sure to use the work day effectively. I try hard to avoid booking any meetings on Tuesday and Thursday during the workday. That lets me put in “concentration time” at my desk. Monday I try to have all routine calls/meetings and Fridays are usually devoted to marketing. I’ve been in this habit – sometimes diligently, sometimes loosely – since 2009 plus or minus.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I think the crucial driver of my business/professional life can be summed up with “it’s never too late to change.” I was working for my father in the 1990s when an opportunity to open a new hotel on San Antonio’s River Walk as Director of Public Relations and Marketing materialized. I just went to the interview to scope out the property … I wasn’t all that serious about campaigning for the job. After I left the interview with the General Manager, I went home and prayed I would get the call. I did – and I LOVED it. I learned so much opening that property with a handful of top-tier professionals. Marketing it once it was operational kept me very busy managing advertising contracts and hiring my friends to model in the first suite of promotional photography. I stayed until I started having kids and switched to public relations “project” work.

In May 2020, I definitely was worried about income. Never in my wildest dreams did I think I would ever go back to lending. It turns out some of my earliest mortgage mentors were still around … and they went out of their way to help me get going again. In addition to hospitality and lending, I have worked as a fundraiser for a non-profit, co-owned a boutique public relations firm with my then-husband and worked as a writer – contributing feature stories and a column (it ran for 9 years) to magazines and a newspaper.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My father, Phil Benson, is an attorney who also bought/sold/developed real estate and owns restaurants. I think he was 60 years old when he said, “I still don’t know what I want to be when I grow up.” He and my mom, Sarah Benson, worked together developing and opening several restaurants together while I was growing up.

Fast forward to 2016: I had been in residential lending for years before my father asked me to help with one of his businesses. I was totally out of lending and working in our family business when Covid hit the US. Restaurants closed – not just OUR restaurants but our client restaurants, as well. One client we worked with for 32 years closed its doors permanently – the pandemic was just the straw that broke the camel’s back. I quit paying myself in May 2020 and looked around at other jobs before I decided to go back into residential lending.

My parents’ ability to adapt and their diverse interests paved the way for me to “pivot” when the environment required it.

Website: https://www.brookebensonlender.com

Instagram: @safoodgirl and @texashomelender

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/brookebenson24

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/brookeloansmoney ………. and also the facebook group Texas Divorce Support Network

Image Credits
The “graphic business card” should be credited “Caley Roth, Grapevine, Texas”

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