Texas REALTORS® convene in Austin for Winter Meeting
02/15/2017 | Author: Editorial Staff
Texas REALTORS® convened in Austin for the 2017 Winter Meeting to learn about their industry, recognize their peers, and continue the work of the Texas Association of REALTORS®.
Unlock your greatness
During the Opening Session, keynote speaker Rick Rigsby motivated attendees by offering advice for achieving greatness. He explained that those who are great at their work aren't afraid of failure, pursue lifelong learning, and learn from others’ success rather than being jealous. "Great people do things other people can't," Rigsby said during the session.
Recognizing Texas REALTORS®
The hard work and achievements of TAR members and local associations were celebrated at Winter Meeting:
- Dave Dalzell of Abilene, 2004 TAR chairman, won the 2016 Texas REALTOR® of the Year
- Coy Garrett of Arlington won the William C. Jennings Award for commercial transaction of the year
- Scott Caballero of San Antonio was named Educator of the Year
- Steve Crorey of Austin won the Texas REALTOR® Hero Award for outstanding community service to promote and advance homeownership
- Mary Leidy, CEO of the Collin County Association of REALTORS®, won the Tom D. Morton award for association executive of the year.
The education awards recognized the following local associations:
- Houston Association of REALTORS® "Contracts and Compliance" won Legal Program of the Year
- MetroTex Association of REALTORS® and Collin County Association of REALTORS® "Professionalism" won Series or Short Program of the Year
- Houston Association of REALTORS® "Realtor Launch" won Marketing Program of the Year
- Austin Board of REALTORS®, San Antonio Board of REALTORS®, and MetroTex Association of REALTORS® received Innovative Program of the Year awards.
Texas REALTORS® advocate for real estate at every level of government
The Public Policy Forum on Saturday opened with ridesharing company Uber's public affairs lead for Texas, Trevor Theunissen, sharing a multi-modal view of the future of transportation and how ridesharing can contribute to it. He said there are four bills so far in the 85th Texas Legislature that would regulate ridesharing at the state level, adding that 36 states have similar regulation.
Also at the Public Policy Forum, former chair of the Texas House Appropriations Committee John Otto and former chair of the Texas House Education Committee Jimmie Don Aycock spoke about public education and school finance questions facing the state. Noting that as state funding for schools goes down as property appraisals increase, Otto said, "There needs to be a discussion about what the state's share of public education funding should be." And because the process known as recapture is coming to more metros, he said, there's a growing awareness among taxpayers that not all of their property taxes are staying local. Aycock said that REALTORS® are ideal leaders on discussions about school finance reform. "This is critical to your industry," he said.
Economic analyst Ron Insana was the keynote speaker at the Governmental Affairs Forum, speaking about national issues, such as financial regulation under President Trump’s administration and a new Congress. "Dodd-Frank will be rolled back," he said, "but the question is how will it happen?" NAR Deputy Chief Lobbyist Jamie Gregory discussed the strong representation Texas has in Congress and reassured REALTORS® that NAR is committed to protecting incentives that promote property ownership, including 1031 like-kind exchanges.
TAR also presented several awards during the Governmental Affairs Forum.
TAR recognized 17 Texas REALTORS® with the Strike Force Award for their dedication to grassroots political advocacy: Dalton Allen, Adrian Arriaga, Russell Cain, Nick Cantu, Nathan Cook, Laura Dupont, Mark Hampton, Bryan Johnson, Bill Jordan, Joe Livingston, Lee Overstreet, Sonya Powers, Adrainne Prince, Barbara Russell, Claire Shahzad, Glenda Witman, and Ed Wolff.
And the 2016 Governmental Affairs Outstanding Achievement Award went to the Collin County Association of REALTORS®. This award recognizes a local association that has demonstrated excellence in fundraising, grassroots involvement, and other local initiatives.
New leaders announced
Winter Meeting closed Tuesday with the Board of Directors Meeting, where new officers were elected for 2018: Chairman Kaki Lybbert, Chairman-elect Tray Bates, and Secretary/Treasurer Cindi Bulla.
The Board of Directors also recognized five new REALTOR® Association Certified Executive (RCE) designees: Lori Levy, TAR vice president of legal affairs; Deb Hernandez, TAR director of professional development; Jon Houser, TAR associate director of professional development; Kelea Youngblood, Austin Board of REALTORS® director of business and professional development; and Roxie Glenn, MetroTex Association of REALTORS® director of professional development.
New technology at TREC
The Texas Real Estate Commission recently launched its new website, and TREC Executive Director Douglas Oldmixon highlighted the changes in design and function and took questions from Winter Meeting attendees on Monday. He said that features from the old website are still being incorporated into the new version but that all functionality should be preserved and improved.
Winter Meeting had a full slate of talented instructors providing education for REALTOR® attendees. The REALTORS® Land Institute sponsored a class on wildlife property tax valuation. Nelson Mock, of Texas Rio Grande Legal Aid, taught a session about the Fair Housing Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, and assistance animals. NAR Associate Counsel Jessica Edgerton gave a presentation about cybercrime and how to protect yourself and your clients. There were also sessions on why your website must be accessible, how appraisals affect your transactions, and more.
Look for photos and a full recap in the March issue of Texas REALTOR® magazine. If you attended Winter Meeting, click here to download a fill-in-the-blank news release to personalize and share.
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