March 11, 2009 — Austin

Celebrating a year of accomplishments, the Texas REALTORS® recognized several outstanding members and local associations during its Winter Meeting at the Hyatt Regency in Austin on February 22, 2009.

“As one of the largest Realtor organizations in the country, I think we have set the standard for excellence in the real estate industry,” said Brooke Hunt, chairman of the Texas REALTORS®. “This event is a celebration of successes and chance to honor all those who have devoted their time, energy and efforts to making our industry better.”

Receiving one of the most anticipated awards of the day, George Stephens of ERA Stephens Properties in Houston was named Realtor of the Year. This title is bestowed annually to a member who, over the past ten years, has made outstanding contributions to the industry through involvement in their national, state, and local Realtor associations.

The William C. Jennings Award for best commercial real estate transaction was awarded to Charlie Foxworth of Foxworth Realty in Beaumont for his representation of a major oil refinery in a complex real estate transaction that took over three years to complete.

Carolyn Wall, CEO of the Greater Metro West Association of Realtors, received one of the most esteemed local leadership recognitions, the Tom D. Morton Award for top association executive. Her work improving membership programs and focus on professional development has led to an unprecedented 237 percent increase in membership at the Greater Metro West Association of Realtors.

In addition to awards for service, Texas Realtors give special recognition to continuing education instructors and programs. This year’s Educator of the Year went to Rhonda Hamilton, an author, speaker and consultant from Longview. After being active in the field for many years, Hamilton has dedicated herself to providing courses and seminars that focus on practical, real-life information for real estate professionals.

Several local Realtor organizations have also taken the lead on furthering real estate education in Texas and were honored with Education Program of the Year awards. These awards are given in recognition of outstanding local association education programs that meet member needs and increase the quality of professionalism in the real estate industry.

In the agency category, the award went to the San Antonio Board of Realtors for “Writing an Offer on a Corporate Property can be Tricky.” For both ethics and best marketing practices, the Austin Board of Realtors won for its “Basic Water Rights” and “Short Sales 101” programs. Finally, the award for most innovative program went to the MetroTex association for their “Risk Management Series.”

The Texas REALTORS® also inducted nine members into the National Association of Realtors Omega Tau Rho fraternity which recognizes Realtors who have made outstanding contributions to the real estate industry. Inductees were Tiena Bock from Victoria; Will Courtney, John Maddux, Jim Parr, Byron B. Searcy from Dallas / Fort Worth; Bill Jones from Temple, Leslie Rouda Smith from Plano; Carolyn Wall from Weatherford; and Avis Wukasch from Georgetown.

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