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Who We Are

We’re a team of new media entrepreneurs and journalists who have been covering the residential real estate beat for years. While we obsessively track the real estate markets we cover, no, we are not real estate agents. (We get that question a lot.)

Check out our bios below, and feel free to send an email. We like hearing from readers.

If your thirst for behind-the-scenes UrbanTurf intel isn’t quenched, head over to our About page.

 
Will Smith

202.792.9660
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Will Smith

Publisher & Co-founder

Will oversees all aspects of UrbanTurf, with a particular focus on the business expansion and technology side of things. Coming nine years after the launch of his first online media business, UrbanTurf is his fourth venture as an entrepreneur, a “job” he adores. Soussi, Habana Village, and Bob & Edith’s are a few of his favorite spots around town. Computer scientist by education, Will grew up just outside DC in Alexandria.

 
Mark Wellborn

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Mark Wellborn

Editor-in-Chief & Co-founder

Mark oversees the editorial operations at UrbanTurf, so if you have any complaints or accolades, he’s your man. Mark grew up barely within the DC borders and is happy to call himself a native Washingtonian. Prior to starting UrbanTurf, he wrote extensively about real estate in the DC area and New York City. During those rare weekend hours when he is not working, you can find him rooting for DC’s beleaguered sports teams. 

 
Nena Perry-Brown

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Nena Perry-Brown

Lead Reporter

Nena was born and raised in Takoma Park, MD. After earning a bachelor’s degree in sociology, Nena spent several years working in property management in DC before making an impulse decision to spice up her life by freelancing for UrbanTurf. Now, Nena spends her days writing full-time for UrbanTurf and freelancing for other local publications. A current resident of Takoma DC, you might also catch her at a go-go or at your favorite bar cheering for the Dallas Cowboys.

 
Llacey Simmons

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Llacey Simmons

Operations Manager

Llacey is UrbanTurf’s temporary operations manager. Prior to joining the UrbanTurf team, she spent several years running an elite tutoring company in Potomac, MD and working as a freelance business consultant. Llacey has a passion for writing poetry and learning new languages. Her latest endeavor is raising her preschool son to speak Chinese and Arabic.

 
Meriah Burke-Raines

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Meriah Burke-Raines

Operations Manager & Copywriter

Meriah is UrbanTurf’s operations manager & copywriter and has been with the company, in one form or another, since 2011. Before joining the UrbanTurf team, she spent several years working as a copywriter and publicist in New York City. Meriah is a 7th generation Washingtonian, creative writer, vinyl collector, beer-enthusiast and baker. She has soft spot for all things DC.

 
Rocky Vega

Rocky Vega

Adviser & Co-founder

Rocky Vega is one of the three co-founders of UrbanTurf and continues to advise the team on all matters related to online publishing. Prior to UrbanTurf, Rocky was a co-founder of RFID Update, which he operated from Brazil, Chile, and Puerto Rico, and an associate publisher of FierceFinance. Vega graduated with honors from Harvard University, where he was on the board of Let’s Go Publications and directed business programs involving McKinsey, Goldman Sachs, and Harvard Business School faculty. He also completed a master’s degree at the Stockholm School of Economics.

 
John Learn

215-290-0636
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John Learn

Technology & Design

John is the president, lead developer and designer at LogicBrush Studios, the company he founded in 2001. His passion is building beautiful, interactive and out-of-the-ordinary websites and web-based applications. With a background that spans both the technical and the artistic, John brings a rare blended perspective to the web development he does for UrbanTurf.

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