Carol Rapp started her winding road in business by selling poinsettia plants out of her parents’ home while attending Bradley University. When she graduated, she opened a flower shop in downtown Peoria and spent 14 years creating everything from unique flower arrangements to unusual atmospheres for large special events.
Several years after the birth of her daughter, Carol obtained her real estate license and found she loved that profession as much as her flower shop. She eventually found her way into a management position with a large, independently owned real estate company in central Illinois.
She recently began a new chapter in life by blending the best aspects of her past work experiences and opening a new real estate brokerage, Gallery Homes, on Prospect Road in Peoria Heights. She enjoys being right in the midst of things with a dynamic group of real estate brokers in an art gallery setting, providing space to feature local artists whose works are rotated every other month.
Carol has served on several boards over the years and currently serves on the Peoria Art Guild and Peoria Players Theatre boards. Her passion for excellence, together with her love for family, friends and community, are what give meaning and purpose to her life.
- Person who’s had the greatest impact on my life: I spent the first part of my life hoping and wishing and praying for a child, and when my daughter Ellie was born, she made my life everything I’d hoped it would be. My world was forever changed and is even more magical now that I’m a Nana.
- What’s your idea of perfect happiness? Walking in a forest of pine trees with a content and grateful heart.
- What is your most marked characteristic? On more than one occasion, I have been told that I am a good listener. I do believe I listen with my heart as well as my ears, so I can also hear words that are left unspoken.
- If you could have any superpower, what would it be? I’d love to be able to hear the stories that the walls of historic homes have to tell about the inhabitants through the ages.
- What or who inspires you? I absolutely adore everything that Brené Brown has ever written. Her words strike such a chord with me.
- Favorite vacation spot: Florence, Italy is the center of the universe when it comes to food, life and art.
- What’s the best thing about being you? All the people in my life! I’m blessed to be surrounded by family and friends who are lavish with their love.
- What’s some of the best advice you’ve been given? When someone offers you an opportunity to do something—even if you have no idea how to go about doing it—say yes! Then figure out how… and do it better than they expected you to do it.
- Favorite smell: Lilacs—especially lilacs on the breeze wafting into the room through an open window on a sunny spring day.
- Favorite actress: Julie Andrews has been my longtime favorite actress because Mary Poppins came out the summer my baby sister was born and I got to see it five times. But Rachel Brosnahan (The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel), with her quick wit and clever performances, may be edging into the top spot! PM