Clapp: A team leader in every respect
- Written by Bruce Olson
Tribunes Community leader series From a legal standpoint I am the broker of record. Real estate offices with independent agents are required by law to have a broker of record. We consider our office a team environment and so, rather than calling us general managers or brokers, we are team leaders, he said. Clapp explained that in todays dynamic real estate environment, just keeping up with rapid change is his primary focus. For us it is more just staying ahead of the curve which can shift quickly, he said as he described the financial crisis of 2008 and 2009. I mean, it was immediate, we felt it very quickly and when it came back in 2012, it came back quickly, he said. Keller Williams has franchised Clapps office to service a large and diverse area, from Lake Houston on the east to I-45 on the west and from Beltway 8 on the south to the proposed Grand Parkway in East Montgomery County to the north. The area is huge. Most of Kingwood is built out, but Oakhurst is growing and there are projects appearing all around our area. Our challenge is to try to stay on top of what is coming up next, said Clapp. Clapp is active in three area chambers of commerce. He has been active with the Lake Houston Family YMCA since before construction of its current facilities when they were operating out of shopping centers, and has served on its board and in its Partners campaigns. As a longtime member of Kingwood United Methodist Church, Clapp is its chairman of the Trustees Committee. He has also been active in the Kingwood Club of Kiwanis International. During the next year he and his Keller Williams office are sponsoring the Town Center Concerts and will take part in various community fundraising events. Clapp is a native Texan and Kingwood original. My family moved to Kingwood from the Metroplex. I was born in the West Texas town of Borger. We moved to San Marcos when I was very young and then moved to Irving, Texas until 1971 when we moved to Kingwood. Our house in Trailwood was one of the first 50 built when Kingwood started. The stop sign at Kingwood Drive and Trailwood Drive was the first thing you hit when you came off Highway 59, he said. Clapp earned his finance degree at Texas A&M, where he met his wife, Laura, and was a proud member of the Aggie Singing Cadets. Upon graduation he returned to Kingwood as a banker at Kingwood Bank. In 1996 he began working on a commercial real estate project for the bank. Eighteen months later, when the banks project concluded, he was convinced he wanted a change in careers. He obtained his real estate license and started as a sales agent at Keller Williams in 1998. In 2002 he took on the team leader management role. I took a pay cut but I got my weekends back, Clapp said. His two sons, Taylor and Marshall, were in middle school and he felt it was important to be more actively involved with his sons at that critical time. Both Marshall and Taylor followed their parents footsteps to Texas A&M. Both currently work in Houston, are in their 20s and are not yet married. As of now we are still without daughters in law or grandchildren but are optimistic that it is only a matter of time, he said. Clapp plays golf and he and Laura like to take cruises. They enjoy Broadway shows and are true Aggies, having held season football tickets and tailgated in the same spot at College Station for more than 20 years. Laura is a teacher at Foster Elementary where she has taught for 22 years. Clapp credits his success to his parents for the standards they instilled in him. He also credits Judy Hopkins at Keller Williams, who convinced him he could be successful in real estate, and David Bubier of Mint Bank in Kingwood, the man who hired and guided him when he first joined Kingwood Bank in 1984. As he looks forward to the future, Clapp is guided by two objectives. Number one, I want to be a good provider for my family and number two, I want to be considered by my peers to be a good person ethically. I get my biggest kick in life helping and watching people around me do really well, he said. How he gets that kick in life is what makes Clapp a true team leader.