“See You at the Top” is a new weekly business feature which offers profiles of young Houstonians who have demonstrated ambition and excellence in leadership.
As a child, Kerry Willrich’s family moved around a lot. His parents were actively involved in real estate, purchasing houses and then re-listing them for sale once the value rose. Around the age of twelve, Kerry began to wonder why his family moved so frequently. He soon asked his parents if they could begin teaching him the details of the home listing process. Because he was allowed to attend meetings with real estate brokers and banks, Kerry’s interest in the housing market soon began to grow and he eventually decided that he would open his own real estate firm one day.
Kerry is a rising star at Rice University, where he is a senior, studying Business Administration. He is currently working as a real estate agent with the Keller Williams Realty Company. His future plans are to earn his law degree from Southern Methodist University (SMU) and go on to work as a practicing attorney. However, Kerry still sees real estate as an ongoing effort and revenue stream for himself.
As a result of his family moving often, Kerry attended three high schools as a teen; two public schools during his freshman and sophomore years and a career school during his junior and senior years. His different experiences while attending the career school and the public school deeply affected his views on education. Kerry realized that being exposed to different learning environments can greatly impact the direction that a person takes for their future.
Kerry believes that programs like the Texas Business Alliance Youth Entrepreneurship Academy and the Houston Area Urban League are invaluable assets to the African American community. He also believes that they give young people a sense of the possibilities that business and education will bring to their lives. Kerry himself is a graduate of the Youth Entrepreneurship Academy and credits the YEA program for helping him with his current pursuits and establishing his views on business.
When asked what his motivation is, Kerry provided me with his two daily mantras:
“I tell myself everyday, that the purpose of my today is to outdo my yesterday,” said Kerry. “I also say to myself that the purpose of my life is to leave the world in a better state than when I came into it.”
Kerry enjoys traveling and learning new things about Houston. He frequently vists gun ranges with his father and enjoys fishing. Kerry tries to stay updated on current events and he is passionate about politics, specifically issues relating to the middle class and educational initiatives.
We’ll be looking for Kerry Willrich at the top.