The Local Advantage


Jessica Cowart
Team Leader

Born and raised in Gainesville, I graduated from Buchholz High School and attended the University of Florida graduating with a degree in Advertising. I spent the next 4 years as a property manager in the Gainesville area. In 2004 I decided to follow my advertising roots and joined The Curry Team as the Marketing Director and team manager, which eventually led me to become a selling partner and Listing Agent helping achieve the #1 Sales Team at Re/Max in Gainesville in 2003-2006 and #26 Sales Team in Florida in 2006. After 3 years my husband and I decided it was time to go out on our own and joined the largest by agent count company nationwide Keller Williams and now we are in the top 10% of Keller Williams Gainesville and sit on the Associate Leadership Council.


During my first year as an agent I sold over $2 Million in sales and over the past 3 years have been involved in over 400 closings.  My main goal is assist my clients to achieve their goals and find their dreams. If you ask any of my past clients they will undoubtedly tell you I never meet a stranger and consider them all a friend. For my buyers, I pride myself on really learning what home will make their life complete and as for my sellers what price and time frame will enable them to make to most of their new surroundings.


As for our local advantage, you probably can’t find a couple with deeper roots than us. My father is a retired Fire Fighter and taught me everything I know about the Gainesville grid and neighborhood make up. I still go to him if I have a question.  My grandparents have lived behind the Millhopper Publix for over 30 years and both of my parents graduated from Gainesville High School.  I bleed orange and blue and will always call Gainesville Home.


Meet The Team


Marquis Richardson
Team Listing and Buyer's Agent

Marquis is a highly motivated former firefighter with an A.S. degree in EMS. He coaches football with the Newberry Parks and Rec center, enjoys volunteering in the community, and loves spending time with his family. Marquis is a proud father, and his oldest son is currently serving in the U.S. Marine Corp. Marquis no nonsense negotiating and heart for the community have made him one a rising star in real estate! 

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Cathy McCoy
Buyer's Agent

Cathy has deep roots in the Levy County area and started in the business as a second career after owning and selling a successful daycare business for 6 years. She is a mom to 3 kids and very active in the local FFA and cheerleading community with her youngest daughter. Her high-energy temperament and knowledge of the surrounding areas is what makes her the perfect Realtor!


Brodie roland
Team admin

Brodie was born and raised in the local area and is currently pursuing a graduate degree in linguistics while working part time for The Local Advantage at Keller Williams. Brodie enjoys spending time with his 3 rescue pups and his boyfriend when not traveling the world learning about other cultures.



Shannon Bass
team leader and co-owner

Shannon was born and raised in local area and started her career in real estate with The Local Advantage as a part time assistant but quickly became multi million dollar producer her first year in full time real estate. Shannon is a mom to two beautiful children and wife to Alachua county native, Toy Bass. They have enjoyed investing and owning real estate for many years before she pursued a full time career in the business and her spunky personality and willingness to go the extra mile for her customers is what makes her one of the area’s top real estate agents! 

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Frances Cabrera
Buyer's Agent

Born and raised in Puerto Rico, Frances graduated from the University of Puerto Rico with a degree in Technology of Food Processing. After graduation in 2011, she moved to Gainesville and made it her second home while raising her adorable baby boy. During the time she has spent in Gainesville, she has improved her English at Santa Fe College, increased her interest in fitness and developed her career in Real Estate following in her mother’s footsteps. Her main goal in Real Estate is to help her clients achieve their goals and find their dream home. Se Habla Español!

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Janie Griffin
Transaction coordinator

Janie is originally from Palm Beach but relocated to the area to be close to family. She enjoys spending time with family and painting in her free time. She owned and operated a title company and worked for a foreclosure attorney before joining The Local Advantage as the transaction coordinator.  Janie’s attention to detail and welcoming demeanor make working with her an absolute pleasure everyday! 

Kara Rarey
Listing/marketing director

Kara is also a local girl and mom to 4 kiddos so she is a pro at multitasking! She enjoys being with her extended family who are all local when she isn’t working and is one of the craftiest people we know. Kara has worked in several busy real estate offices as the listing manager and her flare for copy writing and ability to decipherer the the best qualities is what make her our super star marketer!


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The Matterport camera is a tool to create 3D models that you can walk through as if you were there! It works much the same way that Google Street View does, our marketing specialist Nathan goes to the home with the camera and scans the space, each spot that you are able to stand in virtual reality is a scan taken by the camera. Once the scan is complete it is sent to the cloud were the model is processed and fine tuned. After this process is complete it is ready to be sent to the client via a link to the showcase page, or via embed here on our team website! If you don't have the time to run all over town to view multiple listings you can even walk though with a pair of virtual reality goggles! 



The DJI Mavic Pro is a small yet powerful drone that turns the sky into your creative canvas easily and without worry, helping you make every moment an aerial moment. Its compact size hides a high degree of complexity that makes it one of DJI’s most sophisticated flying cameras ever. 24 high-performance computing cores, an all-new transmission system with a 4.3mi (7km) *range, 5 vision sensors, and a 4K camera stabilized by a 3-axis mechanical gimbal, are at your command with just a push of your thumb or a tap of your finger. Using this asset we take a short video of the home advertising its most glamorous features such as large lots, conservation or waterfront property, and so on; then we take that video and post it to various social media outlets for everyone to see!

Video Marketing