Making a Difference Together

As the year comes to a close, President Tom Salomone is thankful for the REALTOR® Family.

As the year winds down and I prepare to pass the gavel to our next president, Bill Brown, I want to take this moment to say thank you.

When I announced our theme for 2016, the concept of “. . . And Then Some”—always going that extra mile for our families, our communities, our associations, our industry, and the clients we serve—I hoped the REALTOR® family would embrace this philosophy. However, you all haven’t just embraced it; you’ve embodied it. Working together, we have made a difference—not only for our associations, our fellow REALTORS®, and our industry but also for property owners and communities throughout the U.S. and around the globe.

There is no better example of the “And Then Some” spirit than REALTOR® Magazine’s 2016 Good Neighbor Award winners. These women and men go above and beyond, making our world a better place by volunteering their time and talents serving those in need. Congratulations to this year’s winners.

A highlight of my presidency has been traveling across the country, and around the world, seeing the incredible impact REALTORS® make in their communities. Among other roles, REALTORS® serve on planning commissions and zoning boards, they volunteer at soup kitchens and halfway houses, they serve on school boards and county boards. The list goes on and on. My long-standing belief, reinforced this year, is that REALTORS® have boundless energy and a deep-rooted desire to create safe and vibrant communities.

In 2016 the National Association of REALTORS® partnered with the Boys & Girls Clubs of America to support the future of the nation’s kids and ensure they have a safe second home within the Clubs. More than 100 REALTOR® associations, members, and firms have stepped up to volunteer and provide donations totaling hundreds of thousands of dollars. Together, we have made a difference in the lives of thousands of incredible kids.

Enthusiastic member involvement was key to the success of another 2016 initiative. The Phone-A-Friend for RPAC campaign, a national volunteer phone bank program, leveraged the power of member-to-member outreach. Nearly 550 phone bank events have been hosted by local and state associations nationwide to educate members about the importance of investing in the REALTOR® Party, and over 60,000 calls have been made. This program has helped to protect home ownership and property investment while ensuring that the REALTOR® voice remains strong from city halls to the nation’s Capitol.

There’s no doubt that the REALTOR® commitment to hard work and fellowship and the drive to improve the lives of others will continue far beyond 2016. It has been a privilege serving as your president. Thank you again for all that you do.