Midwest Real Estate Data, LLC
The Multiple Listing Service (MLS) may seem to magically update with the latest properties for sale, but the brilliant minds behind this data aggregator work tenaciously to both create and disseminate this information through complex databases. This is Rebecca Jensen’s expertise, one that she began honing in 1998 as a technical support consultant for UtahRealEstate. com (URE). That ultimately led to her eight-year tenure as CEO of the organization, a role that allowed her to apply her undergraduate degree in computer science and her Master of Business Administration in technology commercialization. It was just this past March when Rebecca made the move from Utah to Illinois to assume the helm at Midwest Real Estate Data, LLC (MRED), Chicagoland’s MLS that serves over 40,000 brokers and appraisers as well as 8,000 offices. Her new role permits Jensen the opportunity to do what she does best: develop and implement business processes that help build a highly responsive organization.
Recognizing the many stakeholders that any single real estate transaction involves, Jensen highlights the value that MRED adds. “The MLS business engages real estate brokerages, agents and national organizations, so the business decisions we make can have widespread effects across the entire industry,” she says. “Balancing all of these diverse needs is both challenging and rewarding.” Jensen jokes when pointing out that she strives to use her “two ears and one mouth proportionally,” but means it when she talks about first understanding stakeholders’ needs and wants, and then surveying that community to help inform her decision making.
Take, for instance, her leadership of URE’s creation and deployment of a new, in-house MLS platform. Thanks to an integrated, public-facing website and mobile applications, the system supported more than 90 percent of Utah’s Realtors and reached property managers for the first time, due to her expansion of services. Moreover, Jensen’s four-year chairmanship of the Real Estate Standards Organization (RESO) resulted in the implementation of a long-term strategic plan that included RESO’s creation of the first real estate data dictionary and web application programming interface (API), as well as the National Association of Realtors’ policy that requires each MLS to adopt RESO standards. Citing this landmark decision as an example of how she strives to uniquely contribute to the industry, Jensen calls this policy “a tremendous milestone” for all of real estate.
A member of the MLS Executive Advisory Board at Realtor.com, a committee member for the National Association of Realtors and on the Board of Managers for the newly formed Broker Public Portal, Jensen’s numerous honors include ranking among Inman News 100 Most Influential Leaders, Swanepoel’s 200 Most Powerful People in Residential Real Estate, recognition in Utah Business magazine’s “Forty Under 40” and receipt of the HousingWire Rising Star award. She also finds giving back highly rewarding, and volunteers with groups like Intermountain Healthcare, a nonprofit that President Obama has praised for its exemplary work. And even though this mother of two sons ages 8 and 10 was initially nervous about relocating from The Beehive State, the warm welcome with which neighborhood kids greeted her boys caused those anxieties to quickly disappear. “This community has been incredible! Midwesterners are the best!”