Tuesday, February 18, 2020 - by Brandi Pearl Thompson, president, Greater Chattanooga Realtors
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.
Of course talking with legislators is one way to advocate for our community, but there’s another person who takes her advocacy to another level. Janice Robertson, a fellow realtor, is an advocate for hungry school children in our area. She showed me a picture of a young boy searching for food in a dumpster at a local school, and I immediately understood why she does all the she does. Janice told me that she learned that one in four children are food insecure, and she wanted to help.
Janice and her husband started Snack Packs food ministry in their living room. Snack packs now feeds over 7,000 children at 19 schools. Janice saw a need, and she stepped up.
Last week our state association, Tennessee Realtors, awarded Janice with the first ever Good Neighbor Award. This award recognizes the Realtors from all over state who make a difference in their communities. In honor of Janice’s work, our state association awarded Snack Packs $5,000. That will certainly help feed some children in need!
Janice is just one of our realtor members who tirelessly advocates for our community. We have so many members who give their time and efforts; everything from Habitat for Humanity Builds to raising money to cure diseases.
Last year, Hamilton County Mayor Jim Coppinger said that realtors serve as ambassadors for our area; that Realtors are often the first face that people see when they are moving to the greater Chattanooga area. I believe this as well, and I’m so proud to be the president of an association that serves this community in such a meaningful way.
Realtors are the leading advocates for homeownership as well as commercial real estate, which is why it is so critical that we connect with others to ensure they understand the issues facing the real estate industry and their constituents – of which many are home and property owners. Supporting home and property owners through smart legislation and regulatory initiatives is essential to advancing our nation’s economy, as well as our communities, so realtors are continuing to engage lawmakers on the issues that impact real estate.