Meet Our Real Estate Agents and Staff

Buying or selling real estate in Peoria? Here’s the award-winning team of real estate agents who can make your next move a breeze.

Heather Berres, REALTOR®/Closing Coordinator, Licensed 2004, Joined Rodgers Real Estate Group in 2012

Meet Heather, our closer. Heather joined the Rodgers Real Estate Group in 2012 as our licensed Closing Coordinator. She coordinates all activities from the date the contract is accepted until closing and works diligently with our lenders, appraisers, inspectors, the other agent on the deal and most importantly, our clients. Heather ensures each transaction progresses smoothly and seamlessly. With more than 20 years experience in and around the real estate business, she knows just what to do in every situation.

Heather was born and raised in the Peoria area, attended Limestone Community High School, and earned her Associate’s Degree in Interior Design from Illinois Central College. She earned her real estate license in 2004, then became an “Accredited Home Staging Specialist” and a “Certified Negotiation Expert” in 2008. Heather still resides in the Peoria area, where she is raising her two teenage daughters, Kayla and Emily.

Pat Hayes, Team Photographer - Joined Rodgers Real Estate Group in 2011

Meet our photographer, Pat. Pat brings his talent for photography to our team of real estate agents, turning a long-loved amateur hobby into a second career by making each home look its best with his photos. When he isn’t out supporting the team as our photographer, he helps the rest of the team with his courier skills.

Pat is a retiree who spent most of his career as a university career advisor for students, most recently at I.S.U. Along the way, he had a parallel moonlighting “job” as an amateur photographer. Locally, Pat took pictures of rehearsals and special events for the Peoria Ballet for several years. Golf is now his favorite pastime, and he worked part-time at Kellogg Golf Course for most of the last decade. 

Pat has lived in Peoria for more than 20 years. His wife, Nancy, is a professor at Bradley University, His son, Evan, is now a student there. Pat hails from Cincinnati and is loyal to his Reds, despite being far outnumbered by the many Cubs and Cards fans here.

Karen McLaren, REALTOR®, Licensed 2000, Joined Rodgers Real Estate Group in 2008

Meet Karen, one of our buyers’ favorite real estate agents. Karen became a licensed real estate agent in 2000 loves what she does. Her years of experience and education make her one of our best client resources. Karen is a top-producing Buyer’s Specialist with credentials from GRI, Graduate Realtor Institute, and as a CNE, Certified Negotiating Expert. You’ll benefit from her integrity, energy, and strong work ethic.

Karen has an Associates degree in Textiles and Merchandising, and worked in the retail and customer service fields before transitioning into real estate. This background has made real estate the perfect fit for her. She listens to each client’s needs and will guide you through every step of the home buying journey. She loves working with first-time buyers and also has many repeat clients. Karen’s knowledge and expertise in looking at homes, writing and negotiating your offer, and coordinating all the inspections will give you confidence from start to finish.

Karen came to Peoria from Iowa in 1990. She and her husband, Tom, live in Germantown Hills with their two sons, Kyle and Noah. Karen is an avid Pittsburgh Steelers fan.

Michelle Rutledge, REALTOR®, Licensed 2009, Joined Rodgers Real Estate Group in 2010

Meet Michelle, who’s been a Buyer’s Specialist at Rodgers Real Estate Group since 2010. Michelle first met Scott Rodgers when she and her husband bought their first home from him in 2001 and a rental property the following year. When Michelle got her real estate license in 2009, she came straight to Scott for his advice on how to get started. Scott knew a good thing when he saw it, and the next thing you knew, Michelle came to work as one of the real estate agents with the Rodgers Real Estate Group.

Michelle is passionate about teaching her children to give back and help others in need. She is active in Peoria County/DCFS Foster Care and has foster children currently living with her family. They like to donate time to the South Side Mission and work in their local town, feeding and helping less fortunate families.

For Michelle, real estate is another way she can help people. Helping clients achieve their dream of homeownership is “the most gratifying feeling in the world,” she says. She operates her life and her business with honesty and integrity and loves educating her clients about real estate. Michelle treats her clients according to the Golden Rule: “Do unto others as you would have done unto you.”

Michelle is married to Michael, and they have four children: Brianna, Jaden, Corbin, and Tay. She and her family live in Farmington. In her spare time, Michelle loves to cook, read, travel, and watch her four children participate in multiple sports. She is a native of Milwaukee, WI and she is a huge Green Bay Packer fan!

Tammy Smith, Admin/Office Manager, Joined Rodgers Real Estate Group in 2010.

Meet Tammy, our Listing Coordinator and Office Manager. Tammy joined the Rodgers Real Estate Group in 2010 because she was fascinated by the real estate industry. Tammy handles all administrative functions from the time our real estate agents list your home until an offer is submitted. She keeps everything on track and running smoothly. We rely on Tammy to handle all of the administrative tasks needed to maintain an efficient office.

Tammy more than 20 years of experience in Office Manager and Administrative positions and has been working in Real Estate offices for nearly a decade. She attended Limestone Community High School and has taken several photography classes at Illinois Central College. She volunteers and donates to the Saddle Up for St. Jude fundraiser, Race for the Cure, and Whitney’s Walk.

Born and raised in Central Illinois, Tammy and her husband Rich still reside in the Peoria area. They have two children and one grandson.

Cheryl Uphoff, REALTOR®, Licensed 2001, Joined Rodgers Real Estate Group in 2011

Meet Cheryl, one of our full-time, top-producing buyer specialists. If you’re ready to buy, one of the smartest moves you could make would be to call Cheryl. Her professional credentials include Certified Negotiating Expert and Graduate Realtor Institute; she has also earned a Seller Representative Specialist designation.

Cheryl brings 14 years of experience in various areas ranging from new construction purchases and resale of homes in all price ranges to counseling first-time buyers. She will help make the searching, negotiating, and closing process as smooth as possible.

Her extensive real estate network allows Cheryl to connect her clients with lenders to get exceptional rates and grant options easily, contractors to make repairs or provide remodeling options, and a variety of inspectors. She also maintains good rapport with area real estate agents and attorneys, relationships that often work to her buyer’s advantage. She knows how to help you accomplish your goals and is not satisfied until you are!

Cheryl is a mother of four with six grandchildren, and has resided in the Peoria area all of her life. She currently lives in Morton, and sells properties throughout the tri-county area each year and is typically available for her clients six days a week. She occasionally travels to Florida to visit her sister, two brothers, and mother.

Deanna Zimmerman, REALTOR®, Licensed 2005, Joined Rodgers Real Estate Group in 2014

Meet Deanna, the newest member of the Rodgers Real Estate Group. Deanna joined our team of real estate agents in 2014 as a listing agent, working with many of our sellers. Since earning her real estate license in 2005, Deanna has worked with buyers and sellers. She is experienced working with investors, new foreclosures, and contract for deeds, and has remodeled and sold many homes with her husband, Eric.

Before becoming a realtor, Deanna was a mortgage loan officer for ten years. This experience provides her the knowledge to address any financing issues during the home selling process.

Born and raised in Central Illinois, Deanna currently lives in Metamora with her husband, Eric, and daughter, Taylor.