- Beth Volpert | Gwinnett Citizen
Susie Proffitt Abercrombie has traveled many roads to find her place as the Sunday morning host of Atlanta’s Best New Homes on FOX5. Her gentle Southern drawl engages viewers and sets builders and their agents at ease during interviews for the show. Her manner and style remain genuine even as she changes persona while driving down the Reagan Parkway from work to home where she regains her role of single mom and faithful friend.
With the home market making a slow, but sure comeback, new home inventories are building and selling well. It takes a strong resale market to push the new homes sales, so it stands to reason that real estate sales are experiencing a stronger 2013. According to The National Association of REALTORS website, “Existing-home sales fell in November, although median prices continue to show strong year-over-year growth.”
On her show, Susie finds the builders, developers and Realtors she interviews have confidence that the 2013 increase in sales will continue on into and through the New Year. “It has been a long road for this industry,” says Susie. “They are enjoying a hard-earned increase in business.”
As host and producer of the Sunday morning show, Susie works hard to balance her personal and professional life. Following a set schedule of production during the week, Susie makes certain that she sets aside time to spend in prayer, reflection or bible study each day. On Wednesday evenings, Susie joins a group of women who have been a priceless resource to the single working mom. “Our group is a huge support network for me,” says Susie. “There are several different churches represented, but our faith and friendship grows each week.”
Having friends makes her most important role much easier. Having children at all was an unexpected blessing for Susie. “I was told that I could not have children,” says Susie. “They are my world.” Her natural children, Gracie, who still lives at home, and Jack (22) who lives in North Carolina and her three step children have had a profound and positive impact on her life. “It is kind of like I live in two worlds; a work world and then my home world.” All of her children and grandchildren are a daily focus of her prayers and thoughts.
Those two worlds generally stay separated with Susie’s ability to compartmentalize her efforts to be fully present and engaged in her roles as television host and mom. However, sometimes Susie is surprised when she is recognized around Snellville. “Most of the time, people recognize me from the show, but every once in a while, someone mentions my time as Miss North Carolina.” That’s right…Susie Proffitt Abercrombie’s life path includes some very interesting side trips, not the least of which was the road that led from rural North Carolina to the Miss America stage.
As a young girl, Susie lost her dad to cancer. Following the death of her father, Susie’s mom remarried and the family moved to Black Mountain, NC, near Asheville, NC and eventually opened a profitable clothing store. The move was a huge change from growing up in an area filled with family and her grandfather’s general store. While there, Susie entered and won the Miss Asheville Pageant just prior to going to Western Carolina for college.
After college, Susie participated in and won the title of Miss North Carolina which involved a year of travel in the state. This opened doors for the young woman that eventually led to a career in fashion, fragrance, and television. “I never would have dreamed this path that my life would take,” says Susie. “I felt that everything that I did has prepared me for the person I am now.”
With her professional career moving forward and real estate finding a strong footing again in Atlanta, Susie finds herself looking at expanding markets with the television show. “As real estate continues to improve, there are some strong possibilities for taking Best New Homes further,” says Susie. “I am looking forward to meeting new builders, developers and agents.”
Even with expanding her career, Susie is still strongly committed to her family. Her daughter, Gracie, is Junior at Brookwood High School. Susie has been team mom and now watches her varsity cheerleader as she matures into a young woman before her eyes. “We make sure we carve out time just for us,” says Susie. “As moms, we juggle so many things, but we have a way about us that makes it all work out.” Watching her daughter make a creative, academic and social life for herself is a bit like watching herself at the same age. “Gracie is mostly a typical busy teenager with a job and a life all her own.”
Change and growth are a major theme in Susie’s life. She has been responding to the opportunities that she contends God has provided for her along the way and it has worked well for her professionally and personally. Faith plays an enormous part in guiding Susie along the way and she is committed to continue her quiet times of study and prayer. “I need that time each day to center myself and prepare for the demands of being a single working mom,” says Susie. “Without my support network, the friends and family who are everything, I could not have the job I have or even consider expanding professionally.” Susie is prepared to move forward professionally and continues to “compartmentalize” her personal and professional life in a manner that she hopes will draw upon her varied experiences and establish a strong role model for her children in the future.
Atlanta's Best New Homes airs Sunday mornings at 10:30 a.m. on Fox 5 in Atlanta with Host Susie Abercrombie.
Susie Proffitt, host and producer of Atlanta's Best New Homes on the set filming with her crew, Casey Goode (left) and Josh Pinkston (right).