PRESIDENT'S CORNER: Where Are We Now? A Recap of the First Six Months

Dorothy Botsoe | June 2017

Dorothy Botsoe

“Patience, persistence and perspiration make an unbeatable combination for success.” Napoleon Hill

There’s a biblical phrase my mother used to often say to me “To whom much is given much is expected,” and after my first six months as HGAR President I totally believe she continues to be right! We have come a long way already and have accomplished so much. But there is still work to do.

Our January Gala launch was a spectacular jumpstart to my commitment to inclusion and diversity and asking all of us to think about the following questions: What does it really mean to develop a diverse housing market? What does it mean to embrace inclusion? What will our real estate world look like in the next 10, 15 years?

In the past six months, we have enjoyed a great dialogue in an attempt to answer these questions over “tea” in my “Tea with the President” sessions, which started in February and will continue throughout the year. Some of the feedback I received included:

“Upon entering, I didn’t know what to expect or what topics would be on the agenda, but from inception to conclusion, I was thoroughly impressed!”

“The discussion was informative, lively, progressive and productive. I was encouraged and felt my voice was heard. So much so, I’ve signed up to become more involved in Committees that match my interest, knowledge and life experience.”

Thanks to members, like Teresa Belmore and so many others who joined me for tea and conversation, the feedback and overall involvement has been excellent. I learn a lot in these sessions and believe our time together has been valuable. The discussions are lively and informative.

Gloria Welcome, another member, had this to say about our work so far: “For the many years that I have volunteered at the board, previous presidents have not been as connected to the membership than you. The next president has a hard act to follow!”

I thank you all for joining in on the conversation for change to help us make a difference. We continue to learn from each other how powerful we are as a team; made up of the same differences that demand us to conduct ourselves with the respect for our own and our client’s ethnicity, gender, age, national origin, sexual orientation, education and religious diversity. We are the world.

In February, many of us joined millions of women across the country for the “Women’s March”—a platform once again for our collective voices to embrace and tackle tough issues facing our communities, while also helping us as Realtors recognize the enormous buying power of women in today’s real estate market. We continue to see how women are leading the way in obtaining a piece of the American Dream by owning property and buying homes. And that American Dream must be protected.

In April we celebrated Fair Housing month, which was a reminder of our power as Realtors. We are held to a higher standard based on our Realtor Code of Ethics. Home ownership provides shelter and brings stability to a family and the community. Fair housing and cultural diversity is a celebrated right for all of us. We must always do our job in working with all consumers be it the buyer, seller, renter or investor.

We also have to “advocate” and sometimes “agitate” to make our voices heard. In May, many of you joined me on the bus ride to Albany in support of RPAC (Realtors Political Action Committee). This committee acts as a strong consumer advocate and keeps an eye out on current, pending and proposed legislation that will impact home ownership. I want to say a huge thank you to all who attended and made this day a success.

We were reminded that our RPAC dollars go a long way to make sure we support Realtor friendly legislators who understand our causes. We must continue to make an impact at all levels of government—local, state and federal.

There will be more opportunities to let your voices be heard with upcoming open forums in our communities. I encourage your feedback and interaction on my blog, if you haven’t checked it out please do. Member Angela Briante had this to say about her experience so far with my outreach: “You rocking it! You have ink everywhere!! Love it! Keep doing what you are doing!”

Thanks to all of you for giving me a platform to make a little “noise.” So please check out the blog and post away. I will read and respond timely. Also, keep an eye on the information ticker and event page of HGAR. Things are happening and there is a lot of change coming and coming soon.

As we settle in to the summer, let’s not forget who we are as a team and how important it is for us to keep the conversation for change going. It’s been a great six months, we are half way through 2017 and our success is beginning to show. As Realtors, we still hold the keys to opening the door to someone’s homeownership dream and what a joy it is to be a part of a community that’s not afraid to lead the way and meet our challenges together. Let’s stay the course and stay in touch.

Please feel free to contact me at dorothy@dorothyjensenrealty.com
or at 914-450-0600

Dorothy Botsoe
Dorothy Botsoe is 2017 President of the Hudson Gateway Association of Realtors, Inc.