Our Instructors at the South Carolina Real Estate School for Success

Stacey Starnes Hello, my name is Stacey Starnes and I am the owner of the Real Estate School for Success.

I am also a practicing and top producing real estate agent! I decided to start this school after getting my real estate license. I realized that there was a gap in real estate licensing in South Carolina and I wanted to fill it.

Like with all education it is important where you go to get that education. Some high school students spend months visiting college campuses and reviewing collegiate rankings before choosing their school. As we all know education can make all the difference. After completing my first licensing course, I realized that I needed something more. After buying books and listening to every piece of advice I could get, I slowly started being successful. This is why I named the school The Real Estate School for Success. But it shouldn’t be this hard, Right? Of course not, if you have a curriculum and resources ready for agents it should be easy and it is.

At the Real Estate School for Success we provide you with everything you will need to be successful in real estate. We have our own in-house marketing company, Marketing for Agents. I work closely with them to ensure that you get the right marketing and start selling real estate as soon as possible. Show me the money, right? I get asked a lot, what makes you different?  I always say three things: we care for our students, we want you to succeed and we practice real estate everyday. A lot of our competitors only teach. I bring my experiences, and trust me I learn something everyday, into my curriculum.

But you will not just gain from my experiences but from our experienced instructors as well. We have a wide range of experienced instructors that have performed every type of real estate imaginable from commercial to investment to residential and property management.

I also developed the success course. The success course is a two day course that is jam packed with great information. During this course you will write a business plan and develop a marketing strategy to get you organized. Then we will cover different tactics of negotiation and prospecting management. This course will get you motivated, excited, and give you the confidence you need to sell. I can’t wait to meet you and I hope to see you in our classroom. Remember that Success Starts Here!

We are an approved education provider of real estate courses in the State of South Carolina.  The  South Carolina Real Estate Commission has reviewed and approved every courses that is taught at the South Carolina Real Estate School for Success.  We take pride in creating an educational environment that is both informative and entertaining.  We place special emphasis on providing students with the skills necessary to pass all related exams and succeed in their South Carolina real estate careers.  We take pride in recruiting only the best real estate professionals to teach our real estate courses.

What Makes Us Different? ("There is nothing like Experience")

A man who carries a cat by the tail learns something he can learn in no other way We take pride is the fact that our teachers are true real estate professional that practice real estate.  Our teachers are experienced in many different areas of real estate including commercial, investment, and residential real estate sales.  As the Saying goes, "There is nothing like Experience" and our teachers will gladly share their experience with you.  This is why our slogan is "Success Starts Here" because we will not only get you prepared to take your real estate exams but we will prepare you for your SUCCESSFUL real estate career.

The Real Estate School for Success is independently owned and operated with a mission to provide superior training for real estate professionals. The Real Estate School for Success does not have exclusive partnerships nor will we endorse or promote any Real Estate Brokerage Companies.

The Real Estate School for Success will provide training for any and all Real Estate Brokerage Companies that share our goals and objectives. The Real Estate School for Success will gladly provide exclusive training for any Real Estate Brokerage Company in need of superior real estate training. Additionally, we also provide specific training for any real estate brokerage companies and their agents. This training can be provided on site or here at the school. In an effort to educate and inform potential real estate agents of licensing/education requirements, this school will host "career nights". Occasionally, we will invite different Real Estate Brokerage Companies to participate in the career nights. This invitation will be extended for the sole purpose of allowing potential students the opportunity to ask questions of the different brokerage companies but does not serve as any endorsement.

Frankie Griffin (Head Instructor)

Frankie is a Real Estate Broker that specializes in representing clients in the purchase and sale of single-family residences and income property within the cities of Columbia, Lexington, Chapin, Irmo, Lake Murray, Blythewood, Cayce, West Columbia, Forest Acres, and St. Andrews. He keeps abreast of all transactions in these areas, and is also very knowledgeable about all the local schools.

Active in real estate since 1998, Frankie specializes in the sale of single-family homes in and around the Columbia, Lexington, Irmo and Blythewood areas of South Carolina. He is currently a resident of Cayce SC. Frankie is a seasoned broker and is the host of Success in Real Estate which airs on The Point Radio, 100.7FM or 1470AM every Friday morning from 9am to 10am. Frankie has actively sought to continue his real estate education and has attained the prestigious Certified Residential Specialist designation as well as that of Accredited Buyers' Representative. Both of these designations take years to acquire, involving many hours of classroom instruction and many successful residential closings.Frankie is an Army veteran of 22 years. Upon retiring from the military in 2003, Frankie started his own Real Estate Brokerage Company in an effort to take his level of service even higher. Frankie's operation is completely computerized to ensure that not a single detail is overlooked, whether you are buying or selling. Frankie is one of the only agents in the area that makes his compensation plan an addendum to the listing agreement. This practice ensures that you know exactly how every penny in commission paid will be used in selling your home. The Palmetto Success Team consists of four highly specialized team members each of which are highly trained and specialists in their field. When you hire the Palmetto Success Team you are getting four for the price of one.

Frankie holds the following designations and honors:

  • Success in Real Estate is helping educate the buyer and seller of real estate
  • (CRS)Certified Residential Specialist
  • (ABR)Accredited Buyers Representative
  • (E-PRO)E-Pro Internet Professional
  • MRP - Military Relocation Professional
  • Member of the South Carolina Association of Realtors
  • Co-owner and instructor of the Real Estate School for Success
  • Instructor for the Sumter and Florence (Pee Dee) Board of Realtors


Frankie graduated from high school in 1983. He received a BS Degree from Liberty, majoring in Business Administration. Throughout his real estate career he's continued his education, taking many special focus classes on marketing and selling. He also taught a career development course in the Columbia area.

Professional Affiliations

Frankie is currently a member of the National Association of REALTORS, State and the local REALTORS associations. Frankie also belongs to the Consolidated Multiple Listing Service.

Alonzo Cox

Over forty years in business in the Town of Lexington and over twelve years as an active Real Estate agent. Alonzo is the Broker in Charge at Ronnie Wingard Real Estate in Lexington. Now a licensed Real Estate Instructor. He works with the agents in his office providing assistance and guidance with professionalism which he brings to the classroom. Teaching students (his slogan) "Take care of your clients, don’t worry about commissions or money, you’ll become rich and famous." Alonzo Is dedicated to have all students pass the class and the state exam. He focuses on making sure the students learn it the ‘right way,’ learn how to apply what they have learned and become successful real estate agents.

Alonzo holds the following designations and honors:

  • ABR Accredited Buyers Representative
  • SFR Short Sale and Foreclosure Resource
  • NAR Green Designation-Real Estate for a Sustainable Future
  • Arc of the Midlands President of the Board (2016-present)
  • St Stephens Lutheran Men Past President Two Terms
  • CMLS, Notary, Realtor Association,
  • Owner and BIC at Ronnie Wingard Real Estate
  • Million $ Award -New Oath Team- Real Estate Agent Link
  • Instructor at Real Estate School for Success (New Agents and Brokers)


Lexington High School, University of South Carolina, Real Estate School for Success

For Fun

Hiking. Antique Ford Tractors and Trucks

Debbie Nichols

Debby Nichols has recently joined us on our Property Management Team as an Instructor.

She is a Property Manager specialist, having over 40 years experience in this subject area including residential, commercial, HOA management and industrial properties. She currently is retired in property management and is Broker/Owner of her real estate company but her passion is teaching.

She has taught for Midland Technical College and being a President of the Greater Columbia Apartment Association, assisted in current legislation of the South Carolina Residential Landlord and Tenant Act. Debby has enjoyed teaching both National Apartment Associations as well as Institute of Real Estate Management courses.

Her experience speaks volumes as she shares real stories of her journey in Property Management. Make no mistake, this class is educational, loaded with informative approaches and more than qualifies you for your 30 hour preparation to your State Exam.

So come join us and learn her special secret to choosing the correct answer…..failure is not an option in her class!

Joseph Griffin

A licensed Real Estate Broker serving the midlands of South Carolina as a member of the Palmetto Success Team. Joseph is also a licensed Real Estate Instructor, training future and present real estate agents around the state of South Carolina with the knowledge and professionalism necessary to be successful in real estate. Joseph strives to ensure students are successful in the classroom as well as building a new career.

Joseph also owns Palmetto Measuring, a real estate measuring company calculating the accurate Living Area Square Footage for real estate agents and homeowners. www.palmettomeasuring.com

Professional Affiliations

Joseph is currently a member of the National Association of REALTORS, State and the local REALTORS associations. Joseph also belongs to the Consolidated Multiple Listing Service.

Jackie Stone

Originally from Buffalo, NY, Jacki moved to Georgia in her elementary years. After attending high school and college in Georgia, she and her husband moved to the Columbia area in 2000. Jacki has been serving the Columbia Real Estate Market for the past 13 years. She has worked with all types of buyers from first time, move up, luxury, retiring buyers and investors. She has also specialized in new construction and custom build jobs. With a major in mathematics and a minor in secondary education, Jacki taught math for 4 years at the (then) largest high school in the state of Georgia. Jacki now brings her teaching skills and style into the classroom at The Real Estate School for Success. Jacki enjoys helping others get to their next chapter in life. Teaching First Year Sales, she is dedicated to helping all of her students pass the class and the state exam. Jacki shares personal real estate stories to help her students understand the concepts taught so that they can start their real estate career on the right path and become successful.


Georgia State University, Real Estate School for Success

For Fun

  • Watching her children play sports
  • Artistic crafts and painting fields
  • Building things


  • Mother (doesn't that count?!)
  • Broker
  • Regal Award Winner
  • Home Builders Association of Greater Columbia
  • Realtor Association
  • Instructor at Real Estate School for Success (New Agents)