Charlotte EXECUTIVE Leadership Team - BOARD MEMBERS



KK Interior Design Group is an international design firm with offices in both Charlotte and Raleigh, NC. It is led by the independent president of 15+ years, Krystyna Kielbon. Krystyna, aka “KK,” has a background in finance and interior design which contributes to her vast understanding of client budgets, wants, and needs. She works directly with business owners, architects, brokers, general contractors, and developers to manage the interior design process. She specializes in not only local, but global hospitality, and commercial projects. KK’s design style features a combination of modern sustainability and eye-catching luxury. Her consistent attention to detail and timeless, cutting-edge ideas, have led to years of satisfied clients and successful designs.

Her passion to connect with, and help others, is one of many key attributes that set her apart from other designers in the industry. Her positivity and uplifting attitude radiate through each and every encounter. KK is a passionate community servant with the ability to motivate and inspire individuals. She is empowered by compassion and has a gift identifying potential and abilities. With this ongoing quest to give back and educate, she has been able to promote a significant and positive change in both her community and individuals. Her dedication to excellence, knowledge of the industry, successful implementation skills and leadership roles, have led her to being nominated for positions of power in the clubs and committees she fluently engages in. She is a proud platinum sponsor for CCC CLT and is a member of Triangle CREW and serves on the membership committee. Her name and designs are known throughout the Charlotte region as well as nationally. Her mission is to give back to the community, while still creating unique and unmatched designs.

Leah Parker

Designated Managing Broker for EXP Commercial in North and South Carolina

Leah Parker heads the NC and SC branch offices of eXp Commercial.  She brings years of experience in the business brokerage industry, and when combined with her passion for commercial real estate, she brings a creative and direct approach to advising and guiding her agents and clients.

In her experience, she has worked on many difficult and long-term transactions, including creative commercial financing, business dispositions, tenant representation, and commercial real estate sales. Her transparent, informative, and straightforward approach gives her clients and colleagues answers and options, and her desire to protect and represent her client’s and agents’ best interests drives her in her personal and professional goals.

She is experienced in investment property management with a solid history of success, including oversight of multimillion-dollar properties. She has an exceptional track record of steering improvement projects, building and guiding top-performing investment properties, and optimizing internal operations. Leah is a dynamic, energetic person as well as a steadfast leader. She cultivates a supportive communication style while working with colleagues and fellow real estate professionals, property managers, company leaders, employees, vendors, and clients.

Leah is also the CEO of Trifecta Commercial Services LLC. Her dedication to her client’s investment goals inspired her to create a company that assists through the identification process, analyzing their investment strategies, creating solutions for financing, and advising her clients through the exit process for their small to middle-market businesses. Her business goals have aligned with EXP Commercial where she is a proud manager and agent and she encourages others to be part of a company where you can maintain your autonomy, have integrity, and have unlimited potential for agent success. EXP Commercial has given her company the power to excel and sustain through its ongoing support and resources so that she and her team members are successful.

Leah enjoys working with her fellow agents as an Advisor, Co-broker, and State Managing Broker. In her personal time, she is a full-time single mother of her two children, and enjoys soaking up the sun next to Lake Norman, traveling, cooking, education, and art. She is passionate about helping other women achieve their goals in their commercial real estate businesses and participating in the many organizations of which she is a member.

Noelle ARENA


Noelle Arena is the North and South Carolina Sales Representative for FORTA, a leader in synthetic fiber research and manufacturing. Noelle coordinates with both public and private entities to assess asphalt pavement reinforcement needs and implement long-lasting solutions. She also serves as the Chair for the South Carolina Women of Asphalt, who’s mission is to create awareness of opportunities for women in the industry and provide platforms to create supportive relationships and growth. Noelle is an active member of the WTS Charlotte Chapter and the APWA DEI Network.



Blake Dulin is a Senior Project Manager for Turner Construction Company. With over 10 years of experience with Turner of the Carolinas, Blake has executed projects of various sizes in North and South Carolina. Blake brings a wealth of knowledge and engagement to the construction process, including valuable insights from several local Charlotte transformative projects. Blake has proven operational oversight leadership, leading construction teams for projects valued well over 150 Million Dollars.

A Charlotte Native, Blake has deep roots in the charlotte construction industry He is intrinsically familiar with the local subcontractor community and is a champion for the City of Charlotte’s construction market.



Shawn McMillan is the founder of McMillan PLLC, a law firm with offices in Charlotte and Charleston. The firm is in its 12th year of existence and has attorneys licensed in North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, and Tennessee. Throughout Mr. McMillan’s legal career, he has accumulated a breadth of professional experience in financial services, business and commercial real estate law. He began his career at Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft, LLP, America’s oldest law firm, representing the world’s largest financial institutions on sophisticated lending transactions. Mr. McMillan worked on syndicated and non-syndicated facilities, repurchase facilities, hedge fund financing, offshore financing, warehouse lending, and distressed debt trades for his regional, national and international clients. He also has substantial experience in various real estate transactions including acquisition, construction, condominium conversion and building lot development transactions. McMillan PLLC has assisted its clients with national and international mergers and acquisitions, as well as with the formation of captive insurance companies.

Seeking to create an innovative approach to legal services, Mr. McMillan established a law firm that leverages technology and experience to deliver efficiency and value while developing strong relationships with his clients. McMillan PLLC prides itself on counseling its clients not only in legal matters, but also with respect to business-related issues.

McMillan PLLC is a Diamond Sponsor of the Charlotte Chapter of CREW, an international organization supporting women in commercial real estate and related industries. The firm also sponsors various charity events in the Carolinas.

Mr. McMillan has been recognized as a 2024 “Most Admired CEO” by the Charlotte Business Journal. In addition, he was honored by the Charlotte Chapter of CREW with the 2022 “Member-to-Member Business” Award and the 2018 “Men Supporting Women” Award.

Mr. McMillan and his wife, Anna, have been involved in various philanthropic efforts in Charlotte, including their support of Feed NC, Camp LUCK, Children’s Home Society, and the Ballantyne Ball. They have also supported international charities devoted to children’s issues, including Shepherd’s Field, Love Without Boundaries, and Hope Station. Mr. and Mrs. McMillan have four children.



EXP Realty

As one of North Carolina’s top producing real estate agents, partnered with eXp Realty, Bennie finds pleasure in fulfilling dreams and empowering success in every contact made. His experience as a commercial and residential real estate agent makes him a hybrid of an agent, termed ‘Resimercial.’ He has multiple years of experience in the real estate industry, ranging from buying to selling to listing and leasing. Bennie has a plethora of contacts with other brokers, vendors, contractors, and many more. He is known to be “The Go-To.” He is a Certified North Carolina Mentor & Coach, where he hosts weekly coaching training.

Bennie brings over 15 years of experience in marketing, promotions, and event planning. A 2-time recipient of The Queen City Awards Promoter Of The Year, Bennie knows every aspect of marketing and event productions. He has held events hosting anywhere from 100 to 15,000 people in attendance. Just like his connections as a REALTOR®, Bennie adds on with his contact list consisting of entertainment, photographers/ videographers, bar staff, certified security, and much more. As a promoter, he is affiliated with much of the marketing associated with events at Ovens Auditorium, Bojangles Coliseum, and Spectrum Center.

Bennie is an experienced business owner. Not only does he own his real estate business, Bennie runs a fitness/ martial arts facility, known as Checkmat NC. Checkmat is highly respected around the world as 1 of the top Jiu Jitsu teams, and Bennie’s Checkmat NC is highly respected & loved in the Charlotte- Mint Hill community. In the past, Bennie has owned several bars, nightclubs, restaurants, and warehouse facilities for multiple uses. With this experience, Bennie is no stranger to leading and executing any and all goals set and planned in order to guarantee success.

Prior to real estate and business ownership, Bennie graduated with a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Business Management & Marketing from Winston Salem State University, located in Winston Salem, North Carolina. Immediately following school, Bennie found much success with Liberty Mutual in managing accounts for Wells Fargo employee benefits. He is also a Certified North Carolina Notary Public, where he takes pride in his duty to serve the public.

With knowledge, experience and a rarely seen drive, Bennie inspires others to conquer level after level. In his freetime, Bennie enjoys training & coaching martial arts, gaming, and swimming. He is a proud dad of an amazing daughter, and he also considers himself a master on the grill and in the kitchen. Bennie finds much joy in inspiring others to do more than they could imagine and never remain content while you still have goals and purpose.


Blanton Commercial

Steve has lived in the Carolinas for over four decades and started working at the age of 14 in the Charlotte area Sonny’s BBQ restaurants with his family. During his tenure, he was instrumental in helping the company develop the Carolinas and other markets. With his passion growing for real estate, he earned his NC real estate license in 2008. From there, he gained continued knowledge of the evolving commercial landscape. 2021 was the year Steve moved to full time brokerage and now holds a SC license allowing him to serve Clients throughout the Carolinas.

Steve assists clients in creating, generating, and building wealth through commercial real estate. He leverages his 38 years in the industry, specializing in restaurants, hospitality, and retail. He can help businesses and entrepreneurs obtain their individual and/or business goals with regards to site selection or identifying investment properties. Additionally, Steve helps his clients with their office, land, and light industrial needs.

He is a member of the North Carolina and South Carolina CCIM chapters, CREW Charlotte, and ICSC. As part of the Blanton Commercial Team, he also has membership in the Charlotte Region Commercial Board of Realtors (CRCBR), the North Carolina Realtors (NCR) and the National Association of Realtors (NAR).

Steve is currently pursuing his CCIM Designation as an active CCIM Candidate Member of the CCIM Institute.

Antonetta Marie


Steve Howard

First Reliance Bank

Steve Howard joined First Reliance Bank in September 2023 as Senior Vice President, Market President
of Lake Norman/Charlotte Metro and surrounding markets. He will be responsible for the strategic
market expansion of the bank's footprint and will oversee all lines of business, including personal
banking, business and commercial banking, investments, and treasury services. A Charlotte native with
over 36 years of banking experience, Steve resides in Cornelius NC and has two children. Steve earned a
B.S. in Business Administration from Western Carolina University.

Tyler Goldsmith

Ardor Commercial Advisors

sarah dobroka cooley

Exp Commercial


SVN | BlackStream

Sharese Leggette is an experienced commercial real estate advisor with over six years of experience in real estate. She brings a unique perspective to the industry, with prior work history as an army veteran and a master’s degree in information systems management.

Motivated by her desire to make a positive impact in the community and achieve financial freedom for herself and her clients. Sharese believes that by working together, we can create a better world for ourselves and future generations.

Overall, Sharese Leggette is a dedicated and experienced commercial real estate advisor who is committed to providing exceptional client care, empowering and educating clients, and making a positive impact in the community. If you’re looking for a trustworthy and knowledgeable real estate professional, look no further than Sharese.