Editor’s Note: This story is the latest in an occasional series about young leaders and entrepreneurs trying to make a difference in Texarkana.

TEXARKANA — Holly Craigen, realtor at Better Homes and Gardens, can now add a Habitat for Humanity board member to her list of accomplishments.

The Atlanta High School graduate says her dedication has helped her succeed as a volunteer and professional.

“The biggest factor in my success was not giving up when it was tough and working every second I had,” Craigen said. “I believe it’s something you were born to do or not. When it’s in your bones, it never feels like work.”

The mindset allows her to balance work and personal life, but that doesn’t mean she doesn’t want to prioritize work. She said she’s been known to network whenever she gets the chance, keeping in touch with clients or answering emails and phone calls when she’d rather enjoy the beach.

“I choose work over play,” she said. “Even on vacation, I work. It doesn’t bother me, because I love what I do.”

Finding joy in his career and his service to the Texarkana community motivates Craigen.

“My favorite thing is having the opportunity to do good in this world,” she said. “I enjoy working side by side helping others with people in my community that I might not otherwise have met.”

This idea led Craigen to volunteer with Habitat for Humanity. She was installed as a board member this year.

“I first participated in the Nail a Stud fundraiser and then joined the fundraising committee afterwards,” she said. “They needed volunteers and new ideas, and we had great success last year with fundraising.”

Habitat for Humanity’s most recent event, Diamonds for Doorways, gave volunteers the opportunity to be creative.

“It was great fun for everyone, and we were able to raise a good amount to put to good use,” she said.

In addition to hard work, dedication and commitment, Craigen said success also involves effective time management, asking questions and being kind to others.

“Also remember, someone else’s success isn’t your failure,” Craigen said. “Encourage those around you and spread all the love you can. It’s the easiest thing you can do.