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OFFICIAL MAGAZINE OF THE NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®

Daily Real Estate News  |  June 1, 2006  |   'Good Neighbor' Winner Inspires Katie Couric REALTORŪ Magazine Good Neighbor Award winner Oral Lee Brown was in the spotlight again on Wednesday for her selfless volunteer work. During its goodbye tribute to Katie Couric, the “Today” show recalled Couric's interview with Brown as part of a look back at six “ordinary people with extraordinary courage.” On Couric's last day with NBC’s popular morning program, "Today" highlighted the most inspiring "ordinary people" Couric had interviewed on the show over the years — including Brown, an Oakland, Calif., real estate broker. You can view the full video clip online. Brown won a Good Neighbor Award in 2000 for showing young children in her poverty-stricken, inner-city neighborhood that someone cared. In 1987, she “adopted” a class of 23 first graders and promised: “Stay in school and I’ll send you to college.” With her promise, Brown became benefactor, mentor, and second mother to 23 first-graders. She even put in $10,000 of her own money into a trust account each year to go toward their tuition. Eighteen of Brown’s first graders have now graduated from college and three have gone on to graduate school. But Brown didn’t stop. She has adopted a new group every four years and made the same promise to pay for college. The Oral Lee Brown Foundation that she established in 1989 now has a staff of three, 21 board members, and labs and counseling to help students with math, science, and college-prep tests. She published her autobiography last year titled The Promise: How One Woman Made Good on Her Extraordinary Pact to Send a Classroom of 1st Graders to College (Doubleday, 2005). Brown was among the first group of REALTORŪ Magazine Good Neighbor Award winner. Hundreds of nominations for the 2006 Good Neighbor Awards were submitted by the May 26 deadline, and five winners will be announced in August. Each will receive a $10,000 grant for their cause. For more information, visit the Good Neighbor Awards home page. — REALTORŪ Magazine Online

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