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2020

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AEC Core Standards Work Group

Association Executives Committee
Core Standards Work Group
Final Report

Work Group Purpose: 
The AEC Core Standards Work Group is charged with reviewing the Core Standards program to determine whether any of the criteria should be modified and whether any changes should be made to the appeal hearing process.

Background:
The Core Standards, which became effective upon approval by the NAR Board of Directors in May 2014, are intended to raise the bar for REALTOR® associations and ensure high-quality service for REALTORS®. Local, state, and territorial associations of REALTORS® are required to annually comply with a set of requirements that fall into six categories:

  1. Code of Ethics
  2. Advocacy
  3. Consumer Outreach
  4. Unification Efforts and Support of the REALTOR® Organization
  5. Technology
  6. Financial Solvency

At the 2018 REALTORS® Conference, the Board of Directors adopted customized Core Standards for commercial overlay boards, effective with the fifth Core Standards compliance cycle, which began January 1, 2019.

At the 2019 REALTORS® Conference, with input from both local and state associations, the Board of Directors adopted customized Core Standards for state associations, effective with the sixth Core Standards compliance cycle, which began January 1, 2020. The intent was to raise the bar for state associations, without creating an undue burden, as states are already charged with administering the Core Standards for their local associations.

In 2020, in response to feedback from state associations regarding the Core Standards appeal hearing process for local associations that were not certified under the Core Standards, the AEC Core Standards Work Group was established to take a broader look at the Core Standards program to determine whether any of the criteria should be modified and whether any changes should be made to the appeal hearing process. Additionally, in response to current events and a survey of local and state AEs conducted by NAR’s Research Team over the summer, the work group is proposing changes/ enhancements to the Core Standards to include Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI), Fair Housing, Technology, Leadership Development, and Professional Standards.

Standards Waived in Response to Pandemic

During its first meeting on March 31, the Core Standards Work Group considered the impact of the COVID-19 crisis on local associations’ ability to meet the Core Standards during the sixth cycle (January 1 to December 31, 2020). In light of the social distancing and stay at home orders, travel restrictions imposed by the current pandemic, and out of an abundance of caution for members and association staff, the NAR Leadership Team approved a recommendation submitted by the Association Executives Committee and the AEC Core Standards Work Group to suspend portions of the Core Standards that require in-person interaction for the current cycle.

Outcome: While there were requests to waive all of the requirements to satisfy the Core Standards, the committee’s recommendation to waive Section II. Advocacy, Standard E, and all of Section III. Consumer Outreach was a more targeted way to ease burdens for local associations while still ensuring delivery of high quality member services.

Core Standards Research Survey

In June 2020, NAR’s Research Group conducted a survey of all state and local REALTOR® association AEs, presidents and presidents elect to identify the obstacles to implementing and reporting Core Standards and to determine whether or how Core Standards for local associations should be refined or improved. There were 884 out of 2,900 respondents, for a response rate of 30.5%. Survey finding highlights include the following:

  • 62% feel that the Core Standards, in general, are adequate.
  • Respondents were somewhat evenly split on whether associations should be required to meet the Core Standards either every two years (37%); every three years (23%); or annually (33%).
  • 32% feel that Diversity, Equality and Inclusion (DEI) should be added to the Core Standards; 31% cite Fair Housing.
  • More than two thirds of respondents cite challenges meeting the criteria in at least one area. The areas that are most often cited are advocacy (29%), consumer outreach (20%), and leadership development for elected leaders (15%).
  • Only 2% of respondent organizations have ever been involved in a Core Standards hearing.

Frequency of Core Standards Review Cycle

The work group discussed the impact on local associations if the frequency of the Core Standards cycle changed. If the review cycle changed to every two or three years, the work group weighed whether associations would still be required to meet all of the Core Standards requirements annually, but only report them every two or three years, and whether it would be more complicated to track activities over a two or three-year span.

Outcome: The work group did not think changing the cycle would realize a cost or time savings, and consequently decided not to change the review cycle.

Recommendations

With input from the survey results, the work group considered several changes to the Core Standards that resulted in recommendations focused on DEI, Fair Housing, Technology, Leadership Development and Professional Standards. The work group consulted with Fred Underwood, Director of Engagement, Diversity and Inclusion, in concert with the AEC Diversity Association Leadership Work Group, on the DEI components.

Recommendation #1

“To amend the following Core Standards requirements to acknowledge that associations may meet the existing Advocacy requirement for ‘Act’ under the REALTOR® Party goals and the existing Consumer Outreach ‘Being the Voice for Real Estate' and ‘Community involvement and investment’ requirements through activities that demonstrate a commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and Fair Housing.”

Rationale: NAR’s 2021 strategic priorities call for greater DEI among association members/leaders and a commitment to achieving housing equality and affordability. This recommendation allows REALTOR® associations to meet existing Advocacy and Consumer Outreach standards through engagement in DEI and Fair Housing initiatives, consistent with REALTOR® association priorities. If adopted, the Core Standards Certification Form would be amended as follows:

  1. Advocacy
    E. In addition to the requirements established in subsections A-D, each association must support the REALTOR® Party’s “Vote-Act-Invest” goals, and must annually conduct at least two initiatives or activities furthering or supporting each of those three goals respectively. Associations may meet the requirements for “Act” through activities that demonstrate a commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) and Fair Housing. Commercial Overlay Boards must conduct at least one Vote and Act initiative and two Invest initiatives annually. Examples of initiatives and activities satisfying this requirement are available on NAR’s online Compliance Tool and in the Core Standards Frequently Asked Questions (“FAQs”) and in the REALTOR® Party Resource Guide.
  2. Consumer Outreach
    Every association will demonstrate engagement in at least four meaningful consumer engagement activities annually, including at least two activities demonstrating how the association is the "Voice for Real Estate" in its market, and at least two activities demonstrating the association's involvement and/or investment in the community. Associations may meet the requirements through activities that demonstrate a commitment to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) and Fair Housing.

Recommendation #2

“To amend the Core Standards requirements to require that association strategic plans include a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and a Fair Housing component.”

Rationale: Including Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and Fair Housing components in local association strategic plans brings all entities of the REALTOR® associations in alignment and supports a more comprehensive approach in achieving DEI and Fair Housing goals. If approved, the Core Standards Compliance Form would be amended as follows:

  1. Unification Efforts and Support of the REALTOR® Organization
    C. Every association shall annually certify that its board of directors has reviewed and discussed the association’s business or strategic plan, that the plan includes an advocacy component, a consumer outreach component, a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) component, and a Fair Housing component, and that those components have actionable implementation strategies.

Recommendation #3

“To amend the Core Standards requirements to require associations to annually certify that they have conducted or promoted a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and a Fair Housing activity, with options for completion that take into consideration association membership size and diversity.”

Rationale: Adding a standard that requires associations to annually engage in Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and Fair Housing initiatives supports the REALTOR® association’s 2020 strategic priority, which is focused on greater DEI among association members/leaders and a commitment to achieving housing equality and affordability. Recognizing that there are significant discrepancies among associations due to membership size and diversity, this recommendation is scalable and provides a variety of options to allow creativity and adaptability to meet the additional standard. If approved, the Core Standards Compliance Form would be amended as follows:

  1. Unification Efforts and Support of the REALTOR® Organization
    Associations must annually certify they have conducted a DEI and a Fair Housing activity. This requirement can be met by completing a number of different activities, such as the following:
    1. Measure and assess membership diversity in the association membership and develop an actionable roadmap for local association DEI;
    2. Conduct Fair Housing training;
    3. Conduct an At Home with Diversity (AHWD®) course;
    4. Form a Diversity Committee or a Fair Housing Committee;
    5. Conduct implicit bias training (e.g., NAR’s implicit bias video);
    6. Other DEI or Fair Housing activities.

Note: Fulfilling these requirements under IV. Unification Efforts may also fulfill a requirement under II. Advocacy or III. Consumer Outreach, but not both.

Recommendation #4

“To amend the Core Standards requirement for leadership development education/training to include a commitment to greater Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion among the association’s volunteer leadership; to increase leadership education and awareness of the Core Standards; and to ensure greater understanding of staff and volunteer leadership roles and responsibilities.”

Rationale: Staff leaders provide continuity and have the knowledge and resources to ensure that their volunteer leaders are apprised and aware of association policies, practices, and initiatives. This recommendation supports the need for education and training to prepare volunteer leaders for success in their leadership year. If approved, the Core Standards Compliance Form would be amended as follows:

  1. Unification Efforts and Support of the REALTOR® Organization
    K. Associations will annually provide resources for or access to leadership development education and/or training for their elected REALTOR® leaders, including:
    1. Assessment and encouragement of DEI;
    2. Education, understanding and awareness of the Core Standards;
    3. Understanding of the roles and responsibilities of staff and volunteer leaders as outlined in the President/Chief Staff Executive Checklist.

Associations will document the training, tools, programs, and resources to which they offer or provide access.

Recommendation #5

“To amend the Core Standards requirements to require associations to have the ability to interact with members in a remote work environment via a virtual meeting platform.”

Rationale: As the coronavirus stay-at-home measures restricted in-person gatherings, REALTOR® associations retooled their business practices and are providing virtual offerings to ensure ongoing member services. Virtual meeting platforms include but are not limited to Zoom, Skype and WebEx. The new virtual work environment presented unexpected cost and time saving efficiencies that allows for greater member engagement. This recommendation expands opportunities for members who aren’t always able to participate in live offerings. If approved, the Core Standards Compliance Form would be amended as follows:

  1. Technology
    B. Every association must utilize an email and/or internet-based means for member communication and have the ability to interact with members in a remote work environment via a virtual meeting platform.

Recommendation #6

“To amend the Core Standards requirements to require all associations that administer professional standards to have the services of a certified Professional Standards Administrator.”

Rationale: This revision reflects existing NAR policy requiring associations that administer professional standards to have the services of a certified Professional Standards Administrator. If this recommendation is adopted, the Core Standards Compliance Tool will be modified as follows and will enable associations to identify their Professional Standards Administrator:

  1. Code of Ethics
    B. Every association will maintain a viable professional standards process to enforce the Code of Ethics and provide arbitration and mediation as member services. Associations must have a fully functioning professional standards committee with administrative capability to conduct the program including a certified Professional Standards Administrator, or must administer professional standards enforcement through a multi–board (or regional) professional standards agreement with other associations or with the state association.

Core Standards Hearings Process

Associations that do not comply with the Core Standards risk losing their REALTOR® association charter. If an association appeals the state association’s conclusion that the local association did not meet the Core Standards, the local association has an opportunity to appear before a five member hearing panel of the NAR Association Executives Committee to show cause why the association’s charter should not be revoked. The Core Standards hearing panel’s recommendation is then reported to the NAR Board of Directors for final action.

In October 2020, NAR’s Research Group conducted a focus group to seek input on the Core Standards hearing/appeal process. Focus group participants included former hearing panelists and state association staff who have been involved with the process.

Outcome: The focus group report was shared with the work group and will be discussed at a future meeting when the work group explores possible modifications and improvements to the hearing/appeal process.

Core Standards Compliance Tool and Additional Resources

Work group members provided the following suggestions for enhancing the Core Standards Compliance Tool and expanding resources to assist AEs in the compliance process:

  • Highlight the REALTOR® Association Resource Exchange (RARE) database on nar.realtor as a resource for AEs to share locally developed Core Standards resources.
  • Modify the Core Standards Compliance Tool to be more interactive, allowing AEs to share documents and resources.
  • Provide greater outreach to new AEs by incorporating the Core Standards Compliance Tool and Core Standards resources in NAR’s New AE Orientation and offering training sessions, virtually and on-site, during NAR meetings.
  • Create a recognition program for associations that exceed the Core Standards, similar to existing recognition programs for Advocacy, Global, and Commercial programs.

Future Action

The work group is asking for a term extension or reappointment to allow time to complete its charge. Due to the Coronavirus pandemic and social/racial injustice issues in the aftermath of the George Floyd killing, work group priorities shifted. The work group pivoted to identify recommendations that would provide relief to those who were challenged to meet the standards in a virtual environment, and also focused on incorporating Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and Fair Housing into the Core Standards to align with REALTOR® association strategic priorities. An extension or reappointment allows the work group the time it needs to address the appeal and hearing process.

Work Group Members

Mike Valerino, RCE, Chair (OH)
Jan Marie Ennenga, e-PRO®, Vice Chair (AZ)
Lisia Amburn, RCE (TN)
Brendan Bailey, RCE, CIPS® (MA)
Nicole Banbor, RCE (NJ)
Mike Barth (PA)
Sandra Carroll, RCE (MA)
Ann DeFries (FL), Law and Policy Liaison
Kathy Hartman, RCE (CA)
Allan Hetkowski, RCE (PA)
Emily Horn, RCE (CA)
Erica Huffstetler (AR)
Matthew Lafferty, RCE (DE)
Shay Lawson, RCE (AL)
Shauna Love, RCE (CA)
Amanda Nagle, RCE (IA)
John Petrack, RCE (PA)
Robin Pompey (MI)
Patrick Reilly, RCE (NY)
Jeanie Richardson (MO)
Suzanne Silva, RCE (RI)
Donna Stone, RCE (MO)
Diane Streichert, RCE (NJ)
Jodi Viehman, RCE (SC)

Liaison:
Ann DeFries (FL)

Staff Executives:
Cindy Sampalis (IL), Andrew Scoulas (IL) and Jeremy Green (DC)

AE Competencies and RCE Body of Knowledge Work Group

Association Executives Committee
AE Competencies and RCE Body of Knowledge Work Group
March 16 and April 22, 2020

Work Group Purpose

Update the AE Competencies and RCE Body of Knowledge document that serves as the foundation for all AEC professional development courses, as well as the RCE designation exam.

Meeting Activity

The first meeting of the AE Competencies and RCE Body of Knowledge Work Group was held on March 16 via Webex. An overview of the AE Competencies and RCE Body of Knowledge document was provided, highlighting the three levels of competencies (Administrative, Management and Leadership) and the competencies that are tested on the RCE exam. Consultant Ginger Downs reviewed a template that seven small teams of this work group used to review the competencies to which they were assigned. Consultants Ginger Downs and Alice Martin worked with the teams to review the competencies and make recommendations.

The second and final meeting of the AE Competencies and RCE Body of Knowledge Work Group was held on April 22 via Webex. Each small team reviewed their proposed changes and work group members provided feedback. The final changes were approved and the updated AE Competencies and RCE Body of Knowledge will be available December 2020 and will be used to update The Answer Book, RCE exam questions, as well as the REALTOR® Association Management and Advanced REALTOR® Association Management self-study courses.

Next Steps

This work group will sunset after the REALTORS® Legislative meeting.

Work Group Members

Margy Grant, RCE, CAE, Chair
Deb Haines-Kulick, RCE, Vice Chair Patricia Anderson
Jean Beck, RCE
Mary Kay Brickey, RCE
Lance Evans, RCE
Kenneth Hogan, RCE
Jon Houser, RCE
Alan Jeffries, RCE
Suzan Koren
Debbie Leber, RCE
Teresa McKee, RCE
Bo Pattan
Jonnie Phillips
Susan Pyzynski, RCE
Sharon Sample, RCE
Evelyn Schultz, RCE
Patrick Wallace, RCE
Stephanie White, RCE
Dale Zahn, RCE
Jennifer Zeller, RCE

Liaison
Ann DeFries

Staff Executive
Renee Holland

Association Leadership Diversity Work Group

Association Executive Committee
Association Leadership Diversity Work Group
October, 2020
Final Report

Work Group Purpose

Engage local associations to foster greater inclusion of diversity among association leadership and to create synergy amongst local chapters of multicultural To identify tools, training and other support for local associations to increase the inclusion of diversity in their leadership and to build partnerships with local multicultural real estate organizations.

Background

The work group focused on three broad areas to address its charge -- resources for training, flexible tools, and promotion of best practices – and also sought to identify how to incorporate outreach and partnerships into each of these areas.

During the course of the year, the killing of George Floyd and subsequent conversations of race and equity in the United States brought greater urgency to the work group’s purpose. Work group members encouraged dialogue, listened to member concerns, and led discussions in their local communities and throughout the country regarding race and inclusion. The work group was uniquely positioned to contribute to the AEI Year-Round sessions that focused on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI).

The work group also discussed NAR’s clear commitment to inclusion of diversity statement, presented by NAR President Vince Malta and the NAR Leadership Team. NAR’s statement was valuable in setting the foundation for why DEI in the association and in our leadership is critically important to our industry and association. NAR’s statement prompted state and local associations to engage in open discussions and consider their own practices of inclusion and encouraging diversity in association leadership. Several state associations hired staff experts on inclusion of diversity and made examination of race and equity in real estate a priority for their associations.

Recommendations

Recommendation #1

“To develop and provide a resource for state and local associations on a clear case for inclusion of diversity that includes a summary of the history of race and real estate; the benefits of greater education, awareness, and discussion of racial issues; and an overview of how inclusion of diversity and partnership with local multicultural real estate groups helps the association achieve its goals.”

Rationale: NAR’s message on the importance of inclusion is well stated in multiple messages and materials and has already been influential in encouraging state and local association Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) initiatives. A clear, single document can guide and support state and local staff and volunteer leadership teams as they develop plans to further their DEI plans. This recommendation is that the resource be created as part of the existing activities in the Diversity program and would not require additional funding.

Recommendation #2

“To extend the Diversity Association Leadership Work Group for one year.”

Rationale: The Work Group needs additional time in order to complete the work set forth in the Work Group’s Report and to coordinate the specific recommendations with the Diversity Committee, as needed.

Recommendation #3

“To support the recommendations of the AEC Core Standards Work Group to amend the Core Standards requirement for leadership education/training to include a commitment to greater Diversity, Equity and Inclusion among the association’s volunteer leadership and require local associations to measure, to assess and encourage increased diversity in their leadership relative to their market area demographics, include diversity and inclusion and fair housing in their strategic plan, and to take specific actions from a menu of choices addressing DEI and fair housing. Associations may partner with other associations to satisfy the requirement for specific actions addressing DEI and fair housing.”

Rationale: Staff leaders provide continuity and have the knowledge and resources to ensure that their volunteer leaders are apprised and aware of association policies, practices, and initiatives. This recommendation supports the need for education and training to prepare volunteer leaders for success in their leadership year. The AEC Diversity Association Leadership Work Group supports adoption of a Core Standards requirement for leadership education and training to include a commitment to greater Diversity, Equity and Inclusion among the association’s volunteer leadership. Fair housing and diversity activities serve complementary but different objectives for REALTORS® and REALTOR® Associations. Fair housing is a foundational part of being a REALTOR® and addresses the REALTOR’s duty to the public to provide equal housing opportunities. DEI is about the relationship of the REALTOR® to the REALTOR® Association and their engagement with each other in association matters. Engaging and involving diversity among leadership supports the goals of becoming a more unified organization within the real estate profession.

Tools and Resources

Associations have varying capacities, market areas, sizes, and association management styles requiring a flexible set of tools and resources that AEs can use to guide their associations. Simple checklists provide a starting place and frame of reference that can lead to more specific and detailed guides, roadmaps and training. The work group identified numerous tools and resources that can complement NARs current inventory of materials to help association’s implement their DEI initiatives. The work group recommends that NAR continue to offer its diversity and inclusion grants, and that the following materials be developed:

  • A checklist outlining the overall steps an association can take to address DEI and specific checklists that summarize the following
    • Overall steps to inclusion of diversity
    • Setting up a Diversity Inclusion Committee
    • Training options and resources
    • NAR resources and grants
    • Sources and use of data on demographics
  • An actionable roadmap that identifies paths and steps an association can take to address and increase DEI with links to tools and resources. A recommended Actionable Roadmap is attached.
  • Dashboard that shows local associations member demographics
  • List of multicultural chapters by state
  • Best practices examples
  • Metrics to evaluate progress
  • Guide for selecting speakers and facilitators
  • Study guides and assessments for use in training
  • Speaker’s bureau or regional or national lists of trainers especially on implicit bias and association planning on race and inclusion

Training

The work group identified three specific audiences for whom training is needed: AEs, association staff, and volunteer leadership. Training for staff and volunteer leaders will vary from association, and facilitators who are champions for inclusion will also need to be identified. Training for AEs can be offered at the AE Institute, in partnership with state associations at state AE sessions, and online. The work group strongly recommends that implicit bias training be a key component of the training for all three audiences. The working group also recommends that NAR begin identifying and developing local, state and/or regional champions for inclusion of diversity. These members would be selected and trained much like RPAC champions, to promote and encourage DEI and to help associations with their respective initiatives. The work group offers the following guidelines for developing new training materials:

  • Training content for all audiences
    • Case for inclusion
    • How implicit bias impacts engagement in the association
    • Strategies for inclusion relative to demographic data
    • Identifying and recruiting engaging mentors/leaders
    • Partnerships with multicultural groups
  • Specific content for AEs in addition to the above
    • NAR tools and grants
    • Evaluation metrics
    • Implicit bias training to address inclusion at the association
    • Strategies for inclusion relative to size, management style, and demographic data
    • Identifying, recruiting, and engaging mentors/leaders
    • Providing in-house training to staff and leadership
  • Specific content for association staff
    • Adapt NAR’s diversity training for local association staff to use
  • Providing Training
    • At NAR Meetings: For AEs at AEI, GAD Institute, etc., For Diversity Champions at NAR conferences
    • On-line: Develop video or computer-based training for each recommendation
    • Offer AEs training on facilitating discussion and planning among staff and volunteer leaders.
    • Champions of inclusion: train and recognize local champions to facilitate discussion and planning
    • Speaker Bureau: Develop regional/or national trainer lists, especially on implicit bias training and on association discussions regarding race and inclusion

Promotion, Evaluation and Best Practices

In addition to having a clear statement regarding the need for and benefits of an inclusive association and leadership, the work group recommends that NAR promote the tools and training available to local associations and identify best practices that can inspire and motivate other associations to develop and implement their own diversity and inclusion activities. Recent examples of success in reaching the association’s diverse membership market area; engaging diverse members in the fabric of the association; and building a diverse leadership are needed. These examples should reflect different sizes, management styles and market area demographics.

To identify these best practices, the work group recommends metrics that can be used to evaluate the success of local associations in meeting the goals of inclusion. These metrics should be based on accomplishments, not activities, and should be measurable. The following metrics are recommended:

  1. Overall – changes in diversity included in leadership relative to market and member demographics. Three measures should be included: Overall market demographics, member demographics and leadership demographics.
  2. Discovery stage –
    1. Identification of members serving diverse markets
    2. New contacts from among members serving diverse markets
    3. Increased understanding of the real estate needs of diverse markets
    4. Identification of multicultural chapters and leaders
    5. Communicating case for inclusion to membership
  3. Engagement stage –
    1. Members serving diverse markets attending committee meetings, association events
    2. Members serving diverse markets participating as leaders in events and activities, in classes, on committees.
    3. Publicity regarding diverse member engagement
    4. Participation by leaders of multicultural groups in association activities
    5. Participation of association leadership at multicultural group activities
    6. Multicultural group leaders and members included in leadership training
  4. Realization stage -
    1. Diversity on key committees related to Advocacy, Professionalism and ethics, and member professional development
    2. Leadership training includes diversity among participants and inclusion as a topic of training
    3. Leadership structure, including staff, reflects diversity
    4. Leaders representing diversity sent to the state association and NAR
    5. Governance structure includes paths for diversity inclusion

Using these metrics in examining diversity grants awarded to local associations, as well as other examples of association success, will build a current library of best practices that can be shared with all associations.

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Initiatives Implemented in 2020

With heighted social and racial injustices issues at the forefront this year, with input from the work group, NAR staff is implementing the following initiatives, some of which are already complete:

  • Actionable Roadmap for Local Associations
  • Benefits of local multicultural partnership and list of local chapters (on nar.realtor/diversity)
  • Implicit bias training related to fair housing
  • Demographic data dashboard for local association demographics
  • AEI Year-round sessions on DEI
  • Programming at the Leadership Summit focused on DEI
  • NAR’s clear commitment on inclusion of diversity statement

Next Steps

The work group recommends that it be extended for an additional year to complete the work outlined above and coordinate the specific recommendations with the Diversity Committee, as needed. The Diversity Committee manages the Diversity and Inclusion grants and is developing actions to recognize success at the state and local level as well as guidance on local diversity committees. In partnership with NAR staff and a consultant, the work group can deliver a comprehensive package of tools, resources, training materials, diversity champions, and best practices to assist state and local associations in furthering DEI initiatives and encouraging greater diversity in association leadership.

Work Group Members:

Michelle Mills Clement, Chair (IL)
Deb Junkin, RCE, Vice Chair (GA)
Karen Becker, RCE (CO)
Laurie Benner (MD)
Carrie Chang (MN)
Marisol Correa-Barbosa, RCE (FL)
Keri Epps-Rashad (NC)
Carol Hawk, RCE (FL)
Jo Ann Johnston (WA)
Justin Landon, RCE (KY)
Peggy Llagas (Guam)
Nita Martin, RCE (FL)
Josh McFall, RCE (AL)
Kim Shindle (PA)
Gabe Walsh (IA)
Scott Williams (OH)

Liaison:
Ann DeFries (FL)

Staff Executives:
Krystal Allen, e-PRO (IL)
Fred Underwood, RCE (DC)

Association HR Issues Work Group

Association Executives Committee
Association HR Issues Work Group
Friday, November 6, 2020
2020 Annual Conference and Expo - Final Report

PURPOSE: To address common REALTOR® association human resources issues and concerns, and identify tools and best practices that can assist REALTOR® association staff in relations with other staff and volunteer members.

BACKGROUND: Over the past several months, a contingency of AEs expressed concern about conflicts and challenging relationships between AEs and volunteer leadership. This work group was formed to take a closer look and determine whether these were isolated instances or if there was widespread concern. NAR was also interested to know what human resource issues were causing concern among associations.

A comprehensive 23-question survey was sent to AEs and state, local and national leadership in early 2020 to determine the proportion of associations that has experienced conflict between AEs and volunteer leaders, whether the conflicts were resolved and what factors might be linked to those issues.

In the meantime, prior to the first work group meeting, COVID-19 closed most associations and a need developed for crisis management plans in order to maintain operations and services to members.

WORK GROUP ACTIVITY: During the first virtual meeting in March, it was determined the group could best accomplish its purpose by organizing into two breakout teams:

  1. Crisis Management and Emergency Preparedness and 
  2. Resources and Training for Enhancing Relationships with Leadership

The work group met again in May at NAR’s Legislative Meetings and discussed how to best meet each team’s goals. It was determined that each group would identify tools, services and needs, both existing and those that might need to be developed, to provide in an online toolkit, of sorts, for each of the above topic areas.

Each group met again virtually in July 2020 and at a final virtual call in August 2020. Outlines were solidified to guide staff on the topic areas that were recommended for each of the online toolkits. Content for each toolkit was identified and specific examples, websites, and existing tools/services were cited and suggested for both topics.

RECOMMENDATIONS FOR FUTURE ACTION: The work group recommends that staff move forward and develop two online toolkits that cover the topic areas above. The toolkits are to reside on nar.realtor, where they are readily accessible to all REALTOR® associations, and should be revised and updated as appropriate.

Work Group Members:

Beth Hansen, RCE, Chair
Tina Grimes, RCE, Vice Chair
Lanie Bauer
Christie Bevington, SRES
Tiffany Claxton, RCE
Amanda Creel, RCE
Sheila Dodson, RCE
Amanda Fowler
Tina Franklin
Roxie Glenn, RCE, CRS, GRI
Debra Hansen, RCE
Jamie Horbach
Tracy Huotari, RCE
Jamie Johnson, RCE
Janet Kane, RCE, CIPS
Brianna Keysacker
DaVina Lara
Twis Lizasuain
Stacey Loh
Kim McCoy, RCE
Ryan McLaughlin, RCE
Monica Solis Pena, RCE
Rosemary Scardina, RCE
John Sebree, RCE, CIPS
Lynne Wherry

Liaison:

Ann DeFries (FL)

Staff:

Kyle Lambert London (DC)
Carole Kaptur (IL)

November, 2020

AEC / Global Business Councils Work Group

Association Executives Committee
Global Business Councils Work Group
November 4, 2020
Meeting Summary/Final Report

Work Group Purpose

To explore NAR’s Global Business Councils Program and identify resources and support that could assist local and state associations in their domestic global efforts; provide input on NAR’s global achievement program and propose enhancements to recognizing global business excellence. 

Background:

This work group is a continuation of the 2019 Global Business Councils Work Group and is now charged with implementing the ideas that the 2019 work group created.

Meeting Activity:

Through virtual meetings with work group leadership, the group worked in the following three breakout teams to accomplish its purpose:

  • Communications: focused on how to communicate the global message on available AE communication channels
  • Data: focused on gathering data on global business programs across the country
  • Resources: focused on developing a comprehensive reference of existing materials on global council management 

The work of these three breakouts resulted in a three phase plan that will unfold as follows: 

  • Phase I: merge the information on nar.realtor about global business councils with the work group’s output. 
  • Phase II: condense this into one digital resource and reconstruct it for an easy user experience.
  • Phase III: customize it for an effective user experience (AEs, REALTORS®, international partners)

Staff has the information it needs to work on the various phases and have the finished product ready in the first quarter of 2021. 

Work Group Members:

Andrea Bushnell, Chair (NC) 
Tessa Hultz, Vice Chair (NY) 
Casey Angel (NC) 
Carrie Arblaster (OH) 
David Bennett (FL) Laura Crowther (SC) 
Lynda Fernandez (FL) 
Dave Garrison (FL) 
Theresa Hatton (MA) 
Jacob Knabb (IL) 
Jakeeva Lee (IL) 
Dolly Matten (MN) 
Nicole Murray (PA) 
John Riley (SC) 
Angela Shields (TN) 
Steve Volkodav (CO) 

Liaison:

Anne DeFries (FL)

Staff Executives:

Cynthia Bair (IL) 
Lisa Calarco (IL)


2019

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AEC / Core Standards for State Associations Work Summary

Association Executives Committee
Core Standards for State Associations Work Group
Tuesday, September 17, 2019
Final Report

Work Group Purpose

Consider revisions to the current Core Standards criteria that are specific to state associations.

Background

A goal of the work group was to identify customized Core Standards for state associations that are meaningful and valuable, without creating an undue burden on states, as they are already charged with administering the Core Standards for their local associations. A survey was sent to state AEs in August 2018 to gather input on this issue – 46 state AEs completed the survey for an 88% response rate. Fifty-four percent of the respondents said the Core Standards in their current form provide little or no value to state associations; 30% said they are somewhat or very valuable; and 15% are neutral or unsure. Forty-two percent do not think the Core Standards in their current form raise the bar for state associations: 41% think they do raise the bar; and 17% are neutral or unsure.

With these findings the work group sought input from state AEs on which components of the current standards apply to states and which standards create the greatest value.  A state AE proposal came forward from this request for the work group’s review and consideration.  The work group reviewed and compared all aspects of the proposal with the current Core Standards, point-by-point, and made some additional revisions that were then shared with the state AEs. The output of this review process, with support from both the work group and the state AEs, is encompassed in the attached two documents:

  • Core Standards with Edits to Reflect Proposed Core Standards for State Associations
  • Proposed Core Standards for State Associations Certification Form

Recommendation

The work group approved a recommendation via the Hub, for consideration by the Association Executives Committee at the November 2019 REALTORS® Conference meeting, that the proposed Core Standards for State Associations be approved and submitted to the Board of Directors for implementation, effective with the sixth Core Standards cycle, which begins January 1, 2020.

Work Group Members

Maranda DeSanto, RCE – Co-chair
Angela Shields, RCE, CAE – Co-chair
Mike Barth, CAE
Tammy Brookhouser
Steve Francks, RCE, CAE
Christopher Galler
David Garrison, RCE, CAE
Karen Gehle, RCE, CAE
John Gormley, RCE
Rebecca Grossman, RCE
Richard Haggerty
Barbara Hamilton
Beth Hansen, RCE
Ginny Haralson
Kathy Hartman, RCE
Shay Lawson, RCE
Ali Mann, RCE
Kinski Moss
Mary Pilaar
Scott Reiter
Carol Seal, RCE
Scott Simonich
Rachel Tristano, RCE, CAE
Meghan Webber, RCE
Lynne Wherry
Stephanie White, RCE
Duncan MacKenzie, RCE (AEC Chair)
John Sebree, RCE (AEC Vice Chair)

Liaison
Arlene Davis

Staff Executives
Katie Goldberg and Cindy Sampalis

AEC / Global Business Councils Work Group Meeting Summary

Association Executives Committee
Global Business Councils Work Group
Sunday, March 31, 2019; Thursday, May 16, 2019; Friday, November 8, 2019
Austin, TX; Washington, DC; San Francisco, CA

Work Group Purpose

Explore NAR’s Global Business Councils Program and identify resources and support that could assist local and state associations in their domestic global efforts; provide input on NAR’s global achievement program and propose enhancements to recognizing global business excellence.

Meeting Activity

The first meeting of the AEC Global Business Councils Work Group was held at the AE Institute on March 31, 2019. Work group members introduced themselves and gave an overview of their global business association experience. NAR staff Lisa Calarco gave an overview of NAR's Global Councils. Global success stories were shared, and a discussion of the role of Global at both the state and local level and the current perception of it in the AE community was discussed. After those successes and challenges were shared, certain repeated issues were noticed and it will be the goal of the work group at the next meeting to discuss these issues more in-depth with the goal of providing some solutions by the conclusion of the work group.

The second meeting of the AEC Global Business Councils Work Group was held at the REALTORS® Legislative Meeting on May 16, 2019. The work group is formulating action plans for best practices that will be shared with AE peers in their global pursuits via webinars and community resources and partnerships, including global initiatives into strategic plans. The work group will provide suggestions to enhance the NAR global councils web content and identify the tools needed to start the global dialogue with members. The work group is also evaluating the Global Achievement Program process and application in order to provide feedback for ways to improve or evolve the program.

The third meeting of the AEC Global Business Councils Work Group was held at the REALTORS® Conference and Expo on November 8, 2019. The AEC Global Business Councils Work Group formulated an action plan to develop a toolkit with best practices, sample strategic initiatives and budgets, promotion materials, outlines, checklists, videos, webinars, etc., that can assist associations in creating or enhancing global councils and advancing their domestic global efforts.

Next Steps

This work group will sunset after the REALTORS® Conference and Expo meeting. A request has been submitted to the AEC to continue their work in 2020.

Association Executives Committee / AEI 2.0 Work Group Summary

Association Executives Committee/AEI 2.0 Work Group
Thursday, November 7, 2019
San Francisco, CA
Meeting Summary

Work Group Purpose
To propose new education models, formats, and delivery options for the AE Institute that can be considered in light of changing technologies and adult learner preferences.

Background
This work group was formed out of a need identified by AEC leadership to explore alternate delivery methods for the AE Institute based on a changing AE demographic, and new technologies. These new delivery methods and technologies can impact the experience for attendees, as well as deliver the meeting in a more meaningful way to those who are unable to attend.

Meeting Activity
Through its work, the group determined that the AE Institute should be an event where AEs can learn, network, and recharge so that they return to their associations more energized and committed. One way to achieve this is to enhance the experience AEs have at the AE Institute. To that end, the group made the following recommendations that will be implemented at the 2020 AE Institute:

  • Add emotional and mental wellness classes
  • Create networking “within” networking to encourage attendees to meet new people
  • Program some shorter classes (15-minute TED Talk-style) and build more breaks into the event

During its meeting, the group recommended using the attendee name badge to highlight a fun fact about each attendee, as a way to encourage conversation and networking. This recommendation will be implemented for the 2020 AE Institute as well.

Looking ahead to planning future AE Institute curricula, the work group proposed that the AE Institute Advisory Board seek out speakers based on programming and attendee needs, as opposed to only considering speaker proposals that are submitted through a formal process. This may involve recruiting speakers for very specific topics. The group also suggested incorporating “implementation time” into the Institute framework so attendees can determine how to best integrate the ideas learned into their association operations. Along this same line, the work group recommended exploring other learning methods, such as hands-on learning or watching a video (on You Tube, for example) to gain a different perspective on how others may have handled a certain situation or issue.

REALTOR® Party Resources Work Group Summary

Association Executives Committee
REALTOR® Party Resources Work Group
November 9, 2019
San Francisco, CA

Meeting Summary

Work Group Purpose

Identify program objectives, models/templates, and best practices that state and local associations can use for their leadership and member advocacy orientation and training initiatives.

Meeting Activity

Work group members formed three breakout teams, and met virtually during the summer.  Breakout team leaders provided the following final team reports, and solicited feedback from work group members.

REALTOR® Party State Conference Grant Program – team members reviewed the grant program application/process.  The grant was previously named the State Association RPAC Education Grant, and was revised to more directly meet the needs of state associations. The purpose of the grant is to motivate and aid state association to host trainings and meetings that educate and empower local associations to meet their advocacy goals and core standards.  Updates to the grant include new grant limits, more clear guidelines on use of the grant funds, and more flexibility.  Grant funding was reduced due to growth in use since changes were made, and if continued at the previous funding rate, and the usage growth continues, budget would be exceeded.  NAR will look at increasing funding, if grant continues to be useful and helpful.  The grant, like the previous grants, require a REALTOR® Party leader to present relevant information to the volunteer leaders.

Grant program criteria will be communicated all state AEs to ensure program awareness. 

REALTOR® Party Programs Impact – team members previewed the online REALTOR® Party Interactive Resource Guide that is currently under development and due to be released 1Q 2020, and provided the following feedback:

  • Index and organize interactive guide according to how end users will work with the tool.
  • Allow searchable areas for the Vote, Act, Invest elements
  • Allow searchable how to solve a problem
  • Allow historical search
  • Cross-reference with Core Standards Sections (where activity fits)
  • Add a ‘Recipe’ Level Key for Initiatives to include level of volunteer commitment, level/hours of staff involvement, dollars spent
  • Ranking to be displayed by a House Symbol as opposed to low, medium or high difficulty, or a monetary $ symbols, etc.

An interactive guide will be easier to use and incorporate other REALTOR® Party apps that are also being revised.  Members suggest a “How-to” video be created that can debut during the 2020 AE Institute.

REALTOR® Party/Advocacy Issues Speaker Resource – team members created a speaker resource directory template that will be accessed via the REALTOR® Party website for local and state association reference when seeking presenters for REALTOR® Party and advocacy messages.  The speaker directory will be viewable by topic/issue and area of expertise, and fees will not be included. A link to speaker bios and reviews will be included, as well as a cross-reference with a new interactive Resource Guide.  The directory can be self-populated, with staff review.  The AEI Year Round Facebook group will be a great resource for initial speaker recommendation requests.  A policy will be created on speaker submissions, and self-recommendations, and will include nominator contact info (email), the ability to sort by state, and date of entry.

Team members and a GAD group will serve as first review group prior to public distribution.  Advocacy staff will provide a completion timeline.  After completion, the GAD group will review the directory periodically to ensure that it is accurate and up to date.

Other feedback

Work group members also suggest development of videos and webinars to help educate AEs, and a learning resource similar to C2EX platform to educate AEs on the basic education of the legislative process, how to find information, and simplify REALTOR® Party resources, and ensure mobile friendly access.

It will be important to create a communication plan to ensure AEs are aware of new advocacy resources.

Work Group Members

Laura Crowther, RCE, NC – Chair
Erin Hervey, RCE,  MO – Vice Chair
Holly Callanan, RCE
Ryan Castel, RCE
Michael Coughlin, RCE
Vardell Curtis, RCE
Lance Evans, RCE
Anne Gardner, RCE
Nathan Gorton
Kenneth Hogan, RCE
Debbie Leber, RCE
Steven Louchheim, RCE
Michele Mills Clement, CAE
Josh McFall, RCE, CAE
Michael McGee, RCE
Kathy Nichelson, RCE
John Petrack, RCE
Brandy Purcell-Hartman, RCE
David Stark
Brent Swander, RCE
Ryan Swinney, CRS, GRI, SRS
Albert Tran, RCE, CIPS
Scott Williams
Dale Zahn, RCE

Liaison
Arlene Davis

Staff Executives
Susie Helm and Krystal Allen

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