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REALTORS® Take ALS Challenge

August 25, 2014

REALTORS® from around the country have taken the plunge, pouring icy water over their heads to help raise money for the ALS Foundation. It’s part of a nationwide phenomenon, the so-called Ice Bucket Challenge, that, as of August 25, had raised nearly $80 million for ALS.


Among those taking a soaking were (left to right) Kenny Parcell, 2015 REALTOR® Party Director;  Ginger Downs, CEO of the Chicago Association of REALTORS®; and Charlie Oppler, 2015 NAR Vice President. The threesome was doused Aug. 18 before a crowd of 1,500 during the NAR Leadership Summit in Chicago.


While REALTORS® are among the ALS Foundation’s biggest supporters, many don’t realize that the former Boston College baseball captain who launched the #icebucketchallenge is the son of a Beverly, Mass., REALTOR®. Nancy Frates. Her son Pete was diagnosed with ALS in 2012, and she said in a recent interview that “he set his mind on doing this” the day of his diagnosis, March 13, 2012. “He said he now knew what his mission in life was, and that was to impact the ALS community, the ALS research, the misunderstanding about ALS, and the underfunding of ALS,” she said in the interview.

ALS, or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord. Its most famous victim was another baseball player, Lou Gehrig.

In 2013, Frates was nominated for REALTOR® Magazine’s Good Neighbor Award for her volunteer work with ALS. At the time, she had been working with ALS for 14 months and had raised $30,000. As of Monday, August 25, the ALS Association had received $79.7 million in donations in less than one month (July 29 to August 25) compared to $2.5 million during the same time period last year.

Now, NAR President Steve Brown is asking all REALTORS who’ve taken the challenge to submit their video to a REALTORS® Ice Bucket Challenge playlist. Take the challenge and submit your video now. And, if you haven’t already contributed, please consider making a donation to ALS.

In November, at the REALTORS® Conference & Expo, NAR will pay special tribute to Nancy Frates and her family.