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Biographical and contact information listed below.
Steve Darden has over 26 years of real estate experience. Between 1990 and 1997, while still serving on active duty, Steve became a landlord by acquiring 5 rental home properties. He retired from the military as an 1SG/E8 (First Sergeant) in 1997. In 2000, he began working with the late Joe Buford of Joe Buford Real Estate. At the same time, Steve owned two small businesses – a home repair business called “Hammer and Nail” and a windshield repair business called Windshield Wizards. Steve excelled in real estate very quickly. In his first year with Joe Buford, he became the 2nd bestselling agent in the firm. In his second year, he became the #1 bestselling agent, outselling all other agents in the firm by both dollar amount and volume sold. It was during this time that Steve became known as the “Soldier of Real Estate”.
With aspirations of owning his own real estate firm, Steve took night classes in Austin, Texas in order to obtain his broker license. In 2003, he founded Soldiers of Real Estate. Though Steve started as an owner operated small business, in 2004 he added two staff members and six realtors – two of which have since started their own real estate firms. The number of realtors on staff has increased and decreased over the years, but the reputation and success of Soldiers of Real Estate has remained steady. As of October 2015, the number of properties managed by Soldiers of Real Estate has increased from 7 to 378 units. All the while, Steve has been the heart and soul of the company. He’s a respected business owner, an excellent broker and a trusted property manager.
Evelyn was born and raised in Puerto Rico, she received a BA in Communications from the University of Puerto Rico. Evelyn has worked in Property Management for over 5 years and this experience has given her a deep appreciation of how Real Estate seek to improve the quality of life by helping our customers find their dream home!
Evelyn is our office manager and she is known to bring abundant energy, dedication, creativity, experience and personal knowledge to her work. With her ability to speak English and Spanish, you can be assured that she will stay on top of all details to provide you with an exceptional customer service experience!
Victoria Chestnut has over 5 years of experience in Property Management, in which, she amply demonstrates the ability to accurately depict accounting records including posting rent, accounting month end reporting, and managing delinquent accounts. She received her bachelor’s degree in Finance from Georgia Southern University and is currently pursuing her Masters of Business Administration in Project Management. Her dedication in both her personal and professional career proves that she has the ability to get the job done and the drive that contributes to the success in her life.
Victoria moved to Killeen from Columbia, SC on PCS orders with her husband and son, being she is not only a military spouse but a Navy Reservist herself. She states that “it is an honor to serve for her country and has a passion to help those who cannot help themselves.” She is 100% dedicated in supporting and assisting those who needs her assistance.
Realtor Shawn Darden has over 4 years experience in the real estate industry. He is the son of owner and broker Steve Darden. Shawn is a graduate of Copperas Cove High School. After graduating, he pursued his passion to become a chef by attending the Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in Austin, Texas. Shawn graduated from Le Cordon Bleu with honors. Though Shawn continued to live and work in Austin, deep down he always had an interest in real estate. He soon attended the Allied Business School for Real Estate and where he also graduated with honors. Shawn has been our Austin representative for the last 3 years. He provides a vital service as many transitioning military personnel move to this growing city which is only about an hour's drive from Fort Hood. Shawn is known to be dedicated, professional and reliable.
With 20 years of experience in retail sales and management, Denise brings a solid commitment in customer service to Soldiers of Real Estate. Her previous leadership roles play a key part in serving customers and going the extra mile to ensure that each client has a satisfying experience in reaching real estate goals. As graduate from Belton High School and a current member of Temple College’s Associates in Business program, she uses her experience, business knowledge, and customer service mentality to provide Central Texas with a Realtor that is focused on “serving customers” and giving them a place to call home.
Married to her husband of 18 years and with three teenagers at home, Denise knows the importance of family and strives to be an inspiration to each of them. She believes in the principles of hard work, commitment, and dedication to one’s self which have driven her to be successful in the business world. Denise provides assistance with buying and selling your home by being knowledgeable, professional, reliable and committed.
Jonathan Burton is a Realtor with Soldiers of Real Estate and a active member of the National Association of Realtors. Jon is originally from Sierra Vista, Arizona however; was raised in Schofield Barracks, Hawaii. Jon has a strong Military background. With years of customer service experience, Jon is determined and highly motivated to put his client’s first.
After completing his Associate’s Degree in Business Administration; Jon is currently pursuing his BA in Finance which he will incorporate in the Real Estate domain. Jon will not only provide value but he will meet the satisfactory of his client home buying and or selling needs.
Troy Rickabaugh was born in Iowa, and graduated from Del Valle high school in 1985. He considers Austin Texas the town that built me and shaped me into the business man I am today. Troy worked for Schlotzsky's from 1985-2015, where he worked his way up the corporate ladder. Troy and his wife were franchisees for 7 years in Austin Texas. Troy has been married for 25 years. His family moved to Temple, TX in 2006, where he became the GM for the local high volume Schlotzsky's. Troy attended the champion of real estate school, and achieved his real estate license in November of 2017. Troy has a passion for helping others achieve the American dream in owning a home.