Thank you for allowing me to serve as the HBAGC President for 2011. It has been a real learning experience. The biggest question I, and others, had coming into the position, “So what is the value of membership of the Home Builders Association of Greater Columbia?” and the answers I have leaving the Presidency are amazing.
- The Charitable Foundation. This year we gave $52,000 to children of members for college scholarships in 2011. We also built a home for the Denny Family. Our membership donated nearly $200,000.00 in service, materials, and cash to make this possible. I have attached this link for you to learn more. http://lagniappeproject.wordpress.com/2011/11/07/long-overdue-photo-update/#gallery-7-slideshow
- Legislative issues. It seems like someone in government is always coming after our industry for money, more rules, laws, and regulations. Our staff and our lobbyists combined their effort with our membership to stop these attacks and protect the freedoms of persons to own affordable homes as part of the American dream. We had our day at the capital both here and in Washington. I was amazed how well we were greeted by our congressman and representatives and how engaged they were with us in finding real solutions to the problems that our industry has. We combined our efforts with the REALTOR Association, our employees and families, and we represent nearly 30,000 votes! A special thanks to our Political Action Committees which is how we show our support for those seeking election that support the common sense goals of affordable housing.
- Networking. I will quote my daughter who has been in the business for 8 years and is one of the market leaders in new homes sales and marketing manager: “Most of the quality people I have met in my recruiting and in my business relationships I met through HBA and SMC events”. ‘Nuff said. HBAGC is what the member makes it. It is a way to meet and grow with the highest-level professionals in the industry.
- Community. Our HBA staff, key members, and our lobbyist, work with all the cites, counties, and municipalities, to be sure that processes are followed properly and that changes to policy, ordinances, and laws will not have a negative impact on codes, permits, growth, or jobs.
- Staff. We are blessed. We are nationally known for having one of the best staffs among all the HBAs nationwide. While attending a leadership conference in New Orleans last year, several people commented on this. Our membership numbers, budgets, and reserves show that this is not just a perception, but also a reality!
- Now, I haven’t even mentioned the Parade of Homes, Tour of Homes, two Home Shows, plus the summer outing, fishing tournament, HBA Golf Classic………… and well, I will run out of paper and your attention if I go further. But you do get the picture. There is something for everyone in the industry at the HBA. If you’re not a member join, if you are a member recruit!
In closing, I would like to say I don’t really feel like the leader of this organization, it’s hard just to keep up! We should all follow the example of our members who serve and participate and make this a great industry and organization to be a part of!
2011 HBAGC President