After a long hiatus, Netflix's reality Selling Sunset returned this week with ten new episodes following our favorite luxury real estate agents as they deal with multimillion dollar properties and inter-office tension. Amid the celebrity client cameos and dog birthday parties, the show also brought on two new agents to the Oppenheim Group: former soap opera star Vanessa Villela and food industry CEO turned realtor Emma Hernan.
Hernan, who has worked for the brokerage since 2018, comes onto the show with an extra dose of drama, thanks to a rocky past connection with Christine Quinn. Here's everything we know about the show's newest broker.
She's a former model and CEO of a food company.
Hernan, 30, was born and raised in the beach town of Scituate, Massachusetts, and her family owned a seafood company. As a teenager, she worked as a model and a babysitter, and started investing in the stock market. She is now bicoastal, living between LA and Boston, and works as a real estate agent and as CEO of her plant-based empanada company, Emma Leigh & Co..
She's worked for the Oppenheim Group for years.
The realtor first worked with Brett and Jason Oppenheim when she was looking for a house herself in 2017. Her now boss Jason encouraged her to get a real estate license, and she later joined the Oppenheim Group in 2018, per People. She told the outlet that her connections from her other career has helped her real estate career.
"Being in the food industry is a huge part of my story and also transitioning into real estate. A lot of the ties that I made from that — and from being a woman CEO and a woman entrepreneur — mean I've met other CEOs who are now purchasing homes. So you'll see it unfold [on screen], but it makes a big difference, me coming on and having that entrepreneurial background, for sure."
In an interview with Nylon, Hernan reflected on joining the show. "When I signed on to do the show, I was definitely... not hesitant, but I didn’t know exactly what I was signing up for, and to be honest, it’s been very second nature to me. I’m very comfortable with the cameras around. I’m 100% myself, whether it's on camera, off camera and I think it's important to stay genuine to who you are."
She has a 4-year-old rescue dog named Benny.
The star is a devoted dog mom to Benny, an Akita mix who she rescued from a kill shelter. She also rescued the pup's brother, and gave him to her aunt in Boston. Here's hoping the pup will make a cameo on Selling Sunset.
She's close friends with Chrishell Stause and Mary Fitzgerald.
Hernan told People that she became close with Fitzgerald after meeting her through the Oppenheim twins, whom she's also friends with outside of the office. "I think I would probably say I'm closest with Mary [Fitzgerald] and Chrishell [Stause], but that's nothing against anyone else. I just happened to know them prior to even getting super involved in real estate."
"From the moment that I met Jason and Brett and everyone, started looking at real estate and then was involved in the office, we were hanging out all the time. So, the majority of the weekends we were doing stuff together," she added.
She also opened up to Women's Health about her friendship with Chrishell. "Me and Chrishell really really bonded," she said. "I trust Chrishell with my whole heart and tell her things about my life that you would only share with family."
She has a rough history with Christine Quinn.
The history between the two realtors, who share an ex, is the most dramatic storyline of Season 4. The main misunderstanding between the two, regarding how soon Hernan got engaged to the ex after his Quinn's relationship, brings in tons of tension, with their co-workers choosing surprising sides of the tiff.
The drama with Quinn may have been a part of Hernan being cast on the show. Fellow cast member Fitzgerald told Cosmopolitan UK, "I think the producers found out she had a history with Christine." Fitzgerald also hinted of the Season 4 drama as a whole, "Without giving too much away, I think people can be deceptive. So, in season 4 viewers are going to have to pay attention to what’s happening and put the pieces together, because there’s a lot of crocodile tears…"
She's ready to deal with the criticism.
Hernan told People that she feels a bit nervous to deal with trolls after her reality TV debut. "I think it's really difficult in general for any person to kind of see negative criticism come at you. But of course, as a woman, even more so," she said. "I've seen a lot of the girls struggle with the feedback and criticism they've gotten."
She added that the Selling Sunset cast has already given her advice on dealing with the criticism, and says that she's "excited to open up [her] life."
"They've warned me, and they're super protective of me, which I love. They're like, 'Don't read the comments. They might not always be the best.' But, you know what? It's been really inspiring for me when I'm out and about with them and people will come up and say, 'You inspire me,' and things like that — that's why I want to do it. So that I can inspire young people the same way that a lot of my coworkers do as well," she said.
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