Leesa Harper Rispoli was raised in a family that placed a high value on hard work, with no gender-based expectations. Growing up in San Antonio, she cherishes her weekends spent at the family ranch. Leesa and her sister could handle horses and cattle as proficiently as any man on the ranch. Her childhood was marked by learning to operate tractors at the tender age of eight, with her grandparents and parents instilling a strong work ethic from early on. She fondly remembers local ranchers questioning her father, "You have a cattle ranch and no sons?" to which he confidently replied, "I've never needed any."
Her mother, the legendary D'Ann Harper, brought this same work ethic, determination, and grit to San Antonio's real estate industry in 1986 when she became a broker and opened a Gallery of Homes franchise. During the next two years, Coldwell Banker salesmen persistently approached her to buy a Coldwell Banker franchise. However, D'Ann had a different idea, stating, "Why would I invest in a franchise when you have company-owned offices in this market? I'm not interested in buying a franchise, but if you're open to selling your corporate offices, I'll consider it." Two weeks later, she received a call from California, sparking her famous line of thought, "Now, I've got to go home and tell Herb (Leesa's father) what I've done." Herb, her biggest supporter, simply responded, "So what's the problem, let's get on a plane and go."
This marked the beginning of the Harper women's legacy of being trailblazers in the San Antonio real estate market. D'Ann Harper became the first broker in the U.S. to acquire corporate-owned offices from Coldwell Banker, ultimately earning numerous national awards. Her unwavering commitment to ethics and innovation made her an icon in the San Antonio business community, from introducing the first fax machine in a real estate office to pioneering centralized showing systems.
These values and work ethic were deeply instilled in Leesa, who followed in her family's footsteps. Before joining Coldwell Banker D’Ann Harper, REALTORS, she enjoyed a successful career in public education, beginning as a teacher, advancing to an administrator, and ultimately becoming an Academic Dean for Northeast Independent School District (NEISD). In 2005, she decided to join her mother's real estate business and served as the Executive Vice President of Property Management Services. Under her leadership, Harper Property Management grew its portfolio from 400 properties to over 1,500.
After her property management achievements, Leesa assumed the role of President of Coldwell Banker D’Ann Harper, REALTORS in 2016, carrying on the family legacy. She transformed and elevated the company that her mother founded in 1986.
As a mother with two daughters, two granddaughters and one grandson, Leesa recognizes the importance of mentoring future leaders. She has mentored numerous interns, many of whom have become permanent members of the CBHarper family. With multiple offices, consisting of over 550 Real Estate agents and 65 employees, Leesa's passion for education and coaching shines through various strategic initiatives aimed at developing managers, employees, and sales agents at CBHarper.
Leesa describes CBHarper as an "agent-centric" brokerage, emphasizing that every accomplishment is a collective "team" victory. She believes in equipping her agents with the tools, education, divport, and systems they need to excel in the real estate industry. To Leesa, every investment made, like state-of-the-art technology and in-house IT divport, serves the agents and helps them succeed.
Leesa's commitment to innovation continues as she launched the Global Luxury Division of CBHarper, opening the first Coldwell Banker Global Luxury Office nationwide. She consistently garners acclaim and honors at both the local and national levels.