Awards to rec­og­nize Real­tors who give back to com­mu­nity

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - HOMES ARKANSAS -

WASH­ING­TON — Go­ing be­yond help­ing con­sumers buy and sell homes, many Real­tors give back to their com­mu­ni­ties through vol­un­teer work. In fact, ac­cord­ing to the Na­tional As­so­ci­a­tion of Real­tor’s Com­mu­nity Aid and Real Es­tate re­port, nearly 70 per­cent of Real­tors vol­un­teer in their com­mu­nity each month. To rec­og­nize that com­mit­ment by Real­tors across the coun­try, the NAR is now ac­cept­ing ap­pli­ca­tions for the Good Neigh­bor Awards from Real­tors who have made an ex­tra­or­di­nary im­pact through vol­un­teer ser­vice.

“This year, we cel­e­brate the 20th year of the Good Neigh­bor Awards,” said NAR Pres­i­dent John Smaby, a sec­ond-gen­er­a­tion Real­tor from Ed­ina, Min­nesota, and bro­ker at Ed­ina Realty.

“We are in­cred­i­bly proud of the good work of nearly 200 Good Neigh­bor Award re­cip­i­ents in the U.S. and around the globe through their ded­i­cated vol­un­teer ser­vice since this pro­gram launched in 2000,” he said.

Ten fi­nal­ists will be an­nounced in Septem­ber, and the pub­lic will have a chance to vote for the Web Choice Fa­vorite. Judges will se­lect five win­ners, who will be an­nounced in the Novem­ber/De­cem­ber is­sue of Real­tor Mag­a­zine and will re­ceive a $10,000 grant for their non­profit or­ga­ni­za­tions. The win­ners will be rec­og­nized at the 2019 Real­tors Con­fer­ence & Expo in San Fran­cisco and re­ceive travel ex­penses to the con­fer­ence. Win­ners will also gain con­sid­er­able na­tional and lo­cal me­dia ex­po­sure for their char­i­ta­ble cause. In ad­di­tion to the five win­ners, five honor­able men­tions will each re­ceive a $2,500 grant.

Since 2000, the NAR’s Good Neigh­bor Awards has do­nated more than $1.2 mil­lion to Real­tor-led non­prof­its. The Good Neigh­bor Awards is sup­ported by Real­tor.com and Wells Fargo Home Lend­ing.

“We are proud to re­new our com­mit­ment to the Good Neigh­bor Awards, par­tic­u­larly in the 20th year of the pro­gram,” said Ryan O’Hara, CEO of Real­tor.com, the Good Neigh­bor Awards’ pri­mary spon­sor and the spon­sor of the Web Choice Fa­vorite, which gives ad­di­tional grant money to the three fi­nal­ists who get the most votes from the pub­lic.

“At Real­tor.com, home is ev­ery­thing, and com­mu­nity is a big part of that,” O’Hara said. “We sup­port this awards pro­gram be­cause we think it’s im­por­tant to shine a spot­light on the in­dus­try’s com­mit­ment to com­mu­ni­ties and the Real­tors who take that com­mit­ment to the next level.”

Last year’s Good Neigh­bor Award win­ners con­trib­uted thou­sands of hours to their causes and raised mil­lions of dol­lars. They drew a stand­ing ova­tion from more than 5,000 Real­tors and guests dur­ing the an­nual con­fer­ence in Bos­ton.

The 2018 win­ners were Omayra Borges of Re­al­ity Realty in San Juan, Puerto Rico, co­founder of Fun­da­cion Mochile­ando 100x35; Chet Choman of Col­orado Realty and Land Co. in Alam­osa, Col­orado, co­founder of La Puente Home; Jeremy Licht­en­stein of RE/ MAX Realty Ser­vices in Bethesda, Mary­land, founder of Kids in Need Dis­trib­u­tors (KIND); Joy Nel­son of Hau­gan Nel­son Realty in Water­town, South Dakota, founder of Joy Ranch; and Elias Thomas III of EXIT Key Real Es­tate in Shap­leigh, Maine, leader of a Ro­tary In­ter­na­tional project to build dams in ru­ral In­dia.

2018 Good Neigh­bor Award win­ner Joy Nel­son said her char­ity con­tin­ues to ben­e­fit from the me­dia ex­po­sure that re­sulted from her win­ning the Good Neigh­bor Award.

“The in­cred­i­ble ex­po­sure the Joy Ranch re­ceived through the Good Neigh­bor Awards Pro­gram has brought peo­ple all over the na­tion to in­quire more about the ranch,” she said. “Peo­ple now un­der­stand all the qual­ity-of-life is­sues that we ad­dress, and it mo­ti­vates me to work harder to help even more.”

Nom­i­nees will be se­lected based on their per­sonal im­pact on the com­mu­nity through vol­un­teer work. To be el­i­gi­ble, nom­i­nees must be NAR mem­bers in good stand­ing. Good Neigh­bor Award en­tries must be re­ceived by Fri­day, May 10. For more de­tails, judg­ing cri­te­ria and a nom­i­na­tion form, call 800-874-6500 or visit nar.real­tor/gna.

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