Greetings, all! In this advocacy-focused issue, there is much to be learned, considered, celebrated, and inspired by. But above all, there are reasons to be grateful— especially for the gift of each other and our alliances as we navigate the issues that challenge REALTORS®.
According to its mission statement, the REALTOR® Party is “a powerful alliance of REALTORS® and REALTOR® associations working to protect and promote homeownership and property investment. The REALTOR® Party speaks with one voice to advance candidates and public policies that build strong communities and promote a vibrant business environment.”
I’m grateful for the tremendous efforts the REALTOR® Party has made throughout the challenges of the last year. I’m grateful for the decisions National Association of REALTORS® directors made that played a critical part in directing advocacy on the most critical issues facing our nation. Some of these decisions challenged established relationships, but all were critical to bolstering the core values of our associations and what it means to be a REALTOR®.
As you read through the following pages, consider your role as an association executive and the part each of us plays in helping one another. All of us are hopeful for a better 2021, but new challenges have already tested our ability to speak with one voice this year. Despite these challenges, every REALTOR® association has continued its advocacy, and NAR has maintained its commitment to protecting the interests of REALTORS® and their clients.
“We had more questions [about] our endorsements and RPAC funding than I can ever remember,” says Rebecca Grossman, CEO of the Scottsdale Association of REALTORS® in Arizona. “But we held strong and fell back on our process and consistency, and got through. We have already had one-on-one meetings with our newly elected council members—even those we didn’t endorse—and are hopeful we can build new relationships and continue to advocate for our members.”
So many of you have proved your adaptability and creativity in finding advocacy solutions. You have adapted during the pandemic to ensure real estate remains protected, and you haven’t let negativity make you lose sight of the difference you can make. You succeeded in engaging leaders and elected officials in meaningful ways even in virtual settings, and you built relationships at every level of government.
Look to your alliances throughout the trials you have yet to encounter. NAR is there to support your efforts at the state and local levels and to provide encouragement in all that you do. New programs and initiatives include customized and simplified advocacy resources, better marketing and communications, and more effective ways to measure success.
Spring is the perfect time to put new NAR resources—from grants to training opportunities, such as Fairhaven—to work, if you haven’t already. And most importantly, we must share with each other. I’ve never met an AE who wasn’t happy to share ideas or best practices; the greatest resource is another AE.
Let’s pause, take a deep breath, and acknowledge that all of us are wading through a time of uncertainty. Thankfully, we are not on this path alone. Learn about our advocacy resources, consider these options with open eyes and hearts, celebrate our wins, and practice gratitude.
To get started, send a thank you to your government affairs colleagues who work every day to bring the association’s advocacy efforts to life. They speak on our behalf to crowds who might not want to hear their message. They are the unsung heroes who make a difference in those late-night meetings.And to all of my colleagues, thank you for being the steady hand that lifts each other up!