Deborah Hancock is the principle broker, and owner, of Hancock Real Estate. She was born on the island and is a lifelong resident of Martha's Vineyard, where her family has a long and involved history. Her ancestors originally settled on the island in the 1600’s, and Deb is a direct descendant of Thomas Mayhew (one-time owner and Governor of Martha's Vineyard in the 1600's), John Hancock (first signer of the Declaration of Independence),and Hardy Bodfish (a famous whaling captain). The Hancock family owned large tracts of land all over the Island, the most noteworthy being the Hancock Farm in Quenames, which dates back to the 1800’s. The Hancock family has long been involved in Island politics. The first legal town meeting in Chilmark took place on December 16, 1861, and by 1863 Ms. Hancock's great-great-great grandfather, Samuel F. Hancock, was one of three selectman in Chilmark. Carrying on the tradition of fine Yankee craftsmanship, Deb's father, grandfather and great grandfather were contractors and builders. Both of her parents were also very active in Island politics, her father, Herbert R. Hancock, was a selectman in Chilmark for 37 years, her mother Jean Flanders Hancock was a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution. Both were involved in helping create the important Martha's Vineyard Commission (MVC).
Deb Hancock grew up in Chilmark. She originally got into the real estate business because her family owned many small homes on the island that they rented year-round or seasonally. After obtaining her real estate broker's license in 1979, she ran her father’s construction business, Herbert R. Hancock Contractors and Builders, until 1986. From 1987 through January of 1990, she worked as a broker in Edgartown. In January of 1990 she founded Hancock Real Estate in Chilmark.
In addition to her practical and historical knowledge of Martha's Vineyard, Ms. Hancock has a complete working knowledge of the Vineyard. She has served on the Chilmark Finance Committee, and was a Corporator of Dukes County Savings Bank for many years. While Duke County Savings has now become the Martha's Vineyard Savings Bank, Ms. Hancock's work with the former Dukes County Savings included election to the Dukes County Savings Bank Board of Trustees in 1995, and serving on the Board of Investment for the Bank. Deb was on those Boards for almost thirteen years, including the merger with the Martha's Vineyard Coop Bank to create Martha's Vineyard Savings Bank. Through her association with these organizations and others across the island, Nantucket and the mainland, Deb Hancock has great networking capabilities and many points of reference for her real estate business.