Rachel Saunders Plakon

Commissioner Rachel Saunders Plakon was appointed by Speaker Richard Corcoran in 2018 and reappointed by Speaker Oliva in 2020. She serves on the Executive, Hall of Fame, and Public Policy Committees of the Commission, and is Vice-Chair of the Suffrage Centennial Committee. She is the President and Broker of Saunders Plakon, a commercial and residential real estate brokerage, based in Lake Mary.  She was the former Land Specialist with NAI Realvest, a top commercial real estate brokerage in Central Florida, where she represented the Orlando-Sanford International Airport. In addition, she has closed deals with major companies including Nestle Waters North America, Inc.

Rachel has been a real estate entrepreneur and investor since 2004.  She founded Southeast Ingenuity Investments, Inc. in 2011, and has been actively growing a portfolio of income-producing properties in addition to her brokerage.

Originally from Bonifay, Florida, a small town in the Panhandle, Rachel was born to second-generation timber farmers.

During childhood, she helped found a youth drug-use prevention program named after a song she performed, “Saying Yes to Life.” Her program was endorsed by Colonel Oliver North, Governor Chiles, Senator Graham, and the Florida Sheriff’s Association.  The program’s success also led to national recognition, including an appearance as a guest host on CBN’s 700 Club and TBN’s, Kids against Crime.  She is also the former Community Liaison for Governor Jeb Bush’s Mentoring Initiative.

Rachel has toured internationally as a Christian singer-songwriter. “Strong Heart,” a song she wrote and performed climbed to #1 on the Inspirational Country Music charts in 2014. The song was inspired by her work with the American Heart Association.  She later served as the Founding Chair of the Passion Committee, which grew to be the model volunteer committee for growth in several states.

She is a Leadership West Orange graduate, Leadership Institute graduate, a former fundraiser for American Cancer Society’s “Cattle Baron’s Ball,” and a frequent guest at local charity and political events.  In addition, she has been involved with American Enterprise Institute Leadership Network Southeast Summit.  She currently serves on the Board of Directors of Business Force.

Rachel earned her Corporate Master of Business Administration from Florida International University.  She received her Bachelor of Science from Oral Roberts University in Mass Media Communications as a Magna Cum Laude graduate.

She was also appointed in 2019 by Governor DeSantis as a Commissioner with the Florida Women’s Suffrage Centennial Commission.