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December 30, 2020

A look Back at 2020

2020 is about to be in the rearview, and with that, my time as President of Greater Chattanooga Realtors® will be over. With my last column, I wanted to shine a light on some of the items I’m most proud of as association president in this surprising, and oftentimes trying year:

Encouraging Advocacy in our community. As a Realtor, my job isn’t just putting “For Sale” and “Sold” signs in the ground. You might be surprised to know that as the 2020 President of Greater Chattanooga Realtors, much of my time is spent being an advocate. In fact, I would say that Realtors in our area are not just advocates for homebuyers; we serve as advocates for our entire community.
Being an advocate takes many forms. For example, last week I was on a bus with other Greater Chattanooga Realtors, and we travelled to the Tennessee State Capitol building in Nashville. We joined an around 500 Realtors from all over the state to discuss crucial real estate issues on behalf of current and future home and property owners across Tennessee. These issues includes infrastructure, licensing, and unnecessary fees for homeowners.

Continuing our support for Snack Packs. This year during our annual Realtor Day with Snack Pack, I had the privilege to work with my fellow Realtors and to present a $10,000 check to the Snack Pack Food Ministry. This 501(c)3 nonprofit, founded by Realtor Janice Robertson, helps feed nearly 2,100 food insecure children in Hamilton County every weekend while school is in session. Snack Pack Food Ministry is one of Greater Chattanooga REALTORS community partnership organizations that add value to the quality of life in our community. Getting to see first-hand all that goes into making this operation run as smoothly as it does was quite incredible. I can’t wait to see what we all can do help this organization in 2021!

Helping COVID ravaged areas with the Chattanooga Area Food Bank. Greater Chattanooga Realtors®, in partnership with Real Estate Partners, donated $4,000 to the Chattanooga Area Food Bank for COVID-19 relief efforts. Tennessee REALTORS® allocated $2,000 to Greater Chattanooga Realtors® to use as COVID relief in the community. Real Estate Partners matched the grant with an additional $2,000 for a total of $4,000 to the Chattanooga Area Food Bank through whom the food distribution event was coordinated.

Greater Chattanooga REALTORS® identified East Lake as an area greatly impacted by COVID-19 and saw that they could benefit greatly. On September 24, volunteers from Greater Chattanooga Realtors helped pack and distribute food with other participants. I saw how the Chattanooga Area Food Bank takes funds and multiplies its effects. Thanks to their work, one dollar provides four meals. That’s incredible! This donation certainly helped and showed me how we are all truly in this together.

Helping tornado victims through the Realtors Relief Fund. There were many times this year our membership shined, but this one is very near to me. Many residents were dealt another devastating blow this past April when tornados decimated many homes in our area. Through the Realtors Relief Fund, Greater Chattanooga Realtors distributed more than $75,000 for housing assistance to victims. 85 applicants received a total of $75,604.88 towards their mortgage or rent. Through this fund, 85 families were helped. Sure, the funds can’t fix everything, but we were able to provide support when people needed it most. This was another way that our Realtors help behind the scenes to help families get back on their feet.

As my friend and colleague Robert Backer is sworn in as 2021 President of Greater Chattanooga Realtors®, I know that our association is in great hands. Thanks to all of my fellow Board members, as well as our CEO Carol Seal for their help this past year. Most of all, I’m so thankful for my family to my wonderful family.

Robert, I know you’ll do wonderful things for Greater Chattanooga Realtors® in 2021. It has been my pleasure to serve our members and help make our community aware of the crucial role Realtors play in our community every day. Serving and leading, That’s Who We R®.