Antoinette “Toni” Noday-Krager

True Grit

With only a little over a year under her belt so far, Antoinette “Toni” Noday-Krager is proving how growing up in Youngstown and getting a rough start can be a blessing in disguise.
While everyone goes through their fair share of hard times, Toni has turned those moments into learning lessons and has come to appreciate all the challenges life has thrown at her. Growing up in Youngstown, Toni admits she learned firsthand what ‘true grit’ really was. “The Steel Valley was a bunch of blue-collar men like my dad, a police officer. And if you didn’t make something of yourself, for yourself, then nothing would ever come of you,” she explains.
Toni admits she found no solace as a child; her father was extremely strict, her mom wasn’t fond of her, and she was the topic prize for the bullies in school. But that rough start gave her a strength not many people ever discover. Around the age of seven, young Toni knew if she wanted to make things happen, she had to start taking care of herself. So she did! She began babysitting and finding ways to make money so she could afford clothes and work towards her goal of becoming a nurse. “I didn’t want anyone else to have to feel alone like I did or to have to do things solo,” she admits. “Yeah, I had a hard life, but I’ve since reached out to every single one of those bullies and thanked them for helping me become the person I am today.” A task not many people could muster up the courage to face.
Yet, despite everything stacked against her, Toni ended up reaching her goals and became a nurse in 1986. Prior to getting into real estate, her most recent title was administrative director at the St. Vincent Charity Medical Center Hyperbaric Medicine Center. In charge of business development, staffing, and financial development, Toni was often face-to-face with people ranging from all walks of life, including many “higher-ups” in the industry. The experience gave her a perspective that she has since carried over into her real estate career, and her interactions with many of the bigwigs helped develop her professional tongue.
However, during COVID-19, Toni had to reevaluate her trajectory when everything was shut down and she knew people were suffering, but she had no way to help. She also admits her emotional tank was empty at that point, and she needed a change. “I wanted a career where I could learn and connect with people and build more long-term relationships,” she admits. “That’s what struck me about a real estate career and the Clorice Dlugos Group.”
“When I was going through real estate school,” Toni explains. “In the last three months, I started interviewing brokerages and kept hearing the same blanket responses. I wasn’t hearing what I wanted to hear, and that was discouraging. But after talking with a friend, she nudged me to talk with Clorice because she thought we were like-minded. Well, she was! She was real. A shoot straight-from-the-hip person. Clorice was open, and we just clicked. We had the same drive and personality.”
That passion for the job helped Toni gain perspective on the industry and pushes her to this day to be better. Coinciding with her “kind to a fault” personality, it’s clear that Toni has a heart for helping people ... and dogs! As far back as she can remember, Toni admits she was always looking out for animals and people in need. Her childhood and learning how to care for herself drove her love of helping others.
That passion has since developed into a lifelong pursuit. Toni now has three rescue dogs; two are internationally certified therapy animals, and she dedicates a lot of time to the Geauga Mama Dogs and Pups Rescue. She also supports the Sub Zero Mission, an organization that helps the homeless by providing their “stay alive five” — sleeping bags, hats, boots, coats, gloves. But their main mission is to identify Veterans and get them the help they need. Having two sons and a daughter-in-law currently or previously serving in the military (Cameron Coyne, former Ohio Army National Guard, and SST Colin Coyne and Brittney Coyne of the Ohio Army National Guard), this organization hits home for Toni. She also wants to dedicate more time to helping people with mental issues using a therapy dog team with her certified therapy dog, Oliver.
Beyond the office, Toni admits she likes losing her mind in the woods with some Shinrin-Yoku … forest bathing. “I enjoy hiking and just letting go,” she says. “The fresh air and lack of cell service help me become grounded. If I’m not there, my second home in Geneva on the Lake also helps me decompress.” Additionally, she enjoys collecting antiques, visiting wineries and the strip, and frequenting the beach by the lake.
While Toni plans to keep plowing forward, she thinks a leadership role could be in her near future. But she admits, “I’m really enjoying what I’m doing currently.” So she’ll keep that spirit of true grit going strong to help her clients reach their goals and find their perfect homes. After all, hearing the unsolicited comments like “Toni, I trust you” or “You’re not a normal real estate agent” are what warm Toni to the core and drive her to continue pursuing her passion in real estate.