Meet Jenny Taylor, a lifelong North Olmsted resident dedicated to making North Olmsted a great place to call home.
How long have you been a North Olmsted resident? Do you have any fond memories growing up in the community?
Jenny: I have been a lifelong resident of North Olmsted, with the exception of 9 months that were spent saving (while living in an apartment in Fairview Park) for a house in North Olmsted. My son, who is graduating from high school next year, will be the third generation in our family to graduate from NOHS. My husband and I both graduated from there, as did my in-laws. I have many, many fond memories of living in this city. From my childhood days spent at the Bretton Ridge neighborhood pool to the teen years spent at Great Northern Mall, from the day we bought our first home to my son’s first day of kindergarten – ALL of these memories took place in North Olmsted.
How does your day job as a realtor balance with your community involvement? Do you have any interesting stories involving North Olmsted homes or homebuyers?
Jenny: The advantage that I have as a realtor is the ability to have a flexible schedule. It gives me the opportunity to adjust my schedule to be involved in community events and also be available during the day for events at my son’s school while still being available to dedicate a majority of my time to real estate. Part of the satisfaction I have of being a realtor is the opportunity to see all of the different and interesting homes in the city. I grew up in the same house until I moved out, so my only exposure to other homes was when I went over to a friend’s house. It’s fun to get to go inside (and sell) houses that I remember seeing as a child (and always wondering what they looked like).
As far as funny memories, I have a few – but my favorite was the time I was showing a house (that we believed to be vacant) to a young couple. As we were walking through the home that was mostly unfurnished, we heard a noise in the house. We were startled and started to head for the door when an elderly man who lived in the house appeared. He was probably just as startled as we were, but the look on his face was priceless!
What causes are you most passionate about in your community?
Jenny: One of the great things about North Olmsted is the sense of community it offers to the residents. I am especially passionate about education and safety – which go hand and in hand since I am a parent. I do appreciate that this city offers many opportunities (5k’s, homecoming, etc.) that allow the community to come together to celebrate our city.
Aside from the North Olmsted Arts Commission, what other groups or activities have you been involved with? How did you find out about these activities?
Jenny: I recently graduated from Cleveland State with a degree in Urban Studies, so for a few years, that took up much of my time. It was a bucket list item of mine, and I’m so excited to have completed it. I now have more time to dedicate to things I am passionate about. Family is important to me, so I spend a lot of time with them. I’m also an arts enthusiast and an animal advocate. My sister, who lives in Mansfield, is the president of the local Humane Society BOD, and I often volunteer at events for their organization. Locally, I also volunteer for area animal rescues. While in Mansfield, I also volunteer at a non-profit performing arts center (also along with my sister). It allows me to volunteer for causes I am passionate about while spending time with my family.
I am currently taking a pottery class and enjoy yoga and knitting for relaxation.
Do you have any cherished people, places or things tied to the city?
Jenny: I have a cherished person who really influenced me as a young child. My third/fourth grade teacher, Ms. Shepard, was a very nice and enthusiastic educator, and I really enjoyed having her as a teacher. She would have fitness classes throughout the day to inspire kids to stay healthy. She was always encouraging and made each of her students feel special. I was fortunate enough to meet up with her as an adult to tell her how much she inspired me as a child, and it was really important that I had that opportunity.
What is something that many people would not be able to guess about you?
Jenny: People who know me would never guess that I always wanted to be a realtor. Both of my parents were real estate agents, so it may be something in my DNA. I remember going to open houses as a child, and I always loved the idea of looking at other people’s homes, seeing the different layouts, and imagining I lived there and how I would make the house look if it were mine. When I was unexpectedly laid off from my job, I decided it was finally time to pursue that childhood fascination with real estate. It’s a decision I do not regret. I am completely happy and fulfilled in my career.