Marcy Weinstein & Rex McKown

The distinguished duo behind McKown | Weinstein | Associates—a highly admired and successful agent collaboration at Surterre Properties—has earned widespread recognition for their experience, performance record and mastery of skillsets and strategies. Leveraging their focused local knowledge and power sales approach to lead in a highly competitive arena has invigorated and advanced the luxury real estate market in Southern California since 1991.

As told to Amy Adams

  Photo by Tony Florez

Photo by Tony Florez

Is there a professional philosophy that you follow? Is it one that you developed or was it inspired by a mentor?

Rex McKown: My philosophy comes from my mentor Bill Holden: My actions can have three effects—positive, negative, or none. Choose wisely. 

Marcy Weinstein: The customer comes first. Having been a customer who purchased one of the first lots in Pelican Hill, I realized that this is a service industry where one organization can service all of a client’s needs, which is what we have created at M|W|A.

What are the qualities of your work that you feel have made the most impact in this business?

MW: The fact that I strive to be the most knowledgeable person in all aspects of the real estate industry, and to provide this information to my clients to meet their needs. 

How do you define success, both personally and professionally?

RM: I try to seek happiness in both respects. Many times that requires an intense balancing act. In the end, if I have a positive effect on both my family and my clients, I’ve been successful. 

MW: Success is having successful and positive relationships. If my relationships with family, friends and others are good, then I am too. 

What is the single most important takeaway from your career that you’ve learned thus far—and how has it transformed what you do and how you do it each and every day? 

RM: Once I finally realized that I am not a party to any transaction and removed self-interest from my actions, everything went smoother. It reminded me of when I became a father. Self-interest became secondary and my life became much happier. 

MW: You can never communicate too much. 

What are the qualities you see in others—friends and colleagues—that most impact and inspire you?

RM: Empathy and the ability to see the position of another. Before you can walk in someone else’s shoes, you must first remove your own. 

MW: Anyone who can stay connected as they grow and continue to apply the work ethic that got them to where they are inspires me. Also, the people who strive to stay connected to the things and individuals who helped get them there. 

What does your track record tell us about not only who you are in the real estate world, but your journey to the top?

RM: I would rather be lucky than good, but have found it’s much more productive to be lucky and good. 

MW: That I have never forgotten where I started, and never forgot the goal. 

What gives you energy and makes you thrive?

RM: I work in one of the few businesses in the world where everybody has the same goal: the buyer wants to buy, the seller wants to sell, and both agents want the same. If done correctly, this business can be a happy one for everybody. 

MW: People who are energetic and positive. Equally, the appreciation of this place, and the kaleidoscope of people around us. 

What moves you to act—a cause, something creative, an individual?

RM: I hate to say it, but seeing somebody wronged (including myself) sets me off. I become fully engaged very rapidly and work tirelessly to correct it. 

MW: A need, dancing, and, of course, my mother, Joan Robinson.