Auctioneers have a special skill for keeping an event moving. Nationwide, it's estimated there are 80,000 of them, but only about 7 percent are women.
But one Kansas City woman is making a name for herself in the predominantly male occupation.
Yve Rojas is a woman who goes for what she wants. She loves sales, so she became a medical sales representative. She loves performing, so she became an actress, and then she discovered auctioneering.
"I thought, 'I know so little about this. I'm not sure I can do this,'" Rojas said.
Her knowledge of the suspect quickly changed after she found a school where, in nine days' time, Rojas would be taught the skills that combined all of her passions in one career.
"It's hard to describe the actual feeling, but it's incredibly rewarding. I just love it, it's this natural high that I get," she said. "This is a pathway. I've just opened up to it and I'm allowing myself the courage to just go with it, and trust that there's a reason why I'm here. And now that I'm an auctioneer, I realize that I have been preparing for this, unknowingly, all my life."
Rojas grew up in a small Minnesota town of 1,400. The daughter of a Venezuelan father and a court reporter mother, she said she never saw her heritage or gender as a handicap.
Some might recognize Rojas from a popular show that airs on KCTV5 and other CBS stations across the country. In 2010 she tried to outwit, outplay and outlast members of Survivor Nicaragua.
"I've always had within me that urge to do something out of the ordinary and they gave me the opportunity to pursue that," she said of competing in the show.
Rojas came in 14th out of 20.
These days Rojas hones her craft at events throughout the metro. She has two young girls who keep her not only busy, but motivated. It's for them, she said, that she tried out for the television show and made the decision to become an auctioneer.
"I really need that opportunity to show my daughters that Mom can do something a little more exceptional than just what you're seeing. Let me show you, since I feel like I have failed you in that regard, to put myself out there and achieve something out of the ordinary, unexpected, just to show them, go for it," she said.
You can see Rojas' work next Saturday at the Westport Flea Market. She's helping the Children's Protective Center with an event for kids that includes tickets to the One Direction concert in July.
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