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SAN DIEGO (November 14, 2015) – Throughout 2015, the National Association of Realtors® has enhanced and expanded upon its more than a decade old Realtor® Safety program, developing new materials, creating additional resources and providing members with everything they need to feel empowered and confident in their personal safety.

“When I became NAR president, I pledged to make Realtors®' safety a top priority,” said NAR President Chris Polychron, executive broker with 1st Choice Realty in Hot Springs, Arkansas. “During my tenure as president, we introduced new classes, valuable safety materials and online webinars featuring industry experts to ensure that our members have extensive resources to preserve their safety while on the job.”

NAR has expanded its distribution methods for safety tips beyond traditional pamphlets and guides. Once a week, NAR now shares safety tips via Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. The small, easily sharable image-based tips offer safety information on an assortment of topics, including open house safety, cyber security, home security and more.

NAR also commissioned the 2015 Member Safety Report, which asked members how safe they feel on the job, about their personal safety experiences, and about the safety procedures and materials provided by their brokerage. The report found that while 96 percent of Realtors® have never been the victim of crime, 40 percent have found themselves in situations where they have feared for their safety or the safety of their personal information.

The goal of the survey was to better understand what causes Realtors® to feel safe or unsafe, and what steps they are already taking to keep themselves protected, so that NAR could develop and provide new tools that members want and need.

The commitment to safety has also been incorporated into the 2015 REALTORS® Conference & Expo, here this week. Realtors® had the opportunity to attend Real Estate Safety Matters, a safety class that serves as a primer on how they can limit risk and protect themselves should the need arise.

“Safe business is smart business,” said Tamara Suminski, a Realtor® and safety course supervisor. “We all have these personal stories of close calls, and I want to make sure my Realtor® family knows that taking a risk with their safety is rarely worth the reward.”

Suminski emphasized the importance of awareness and trusting your instincts. “Sometimes we don’t listen to our intuition enough; we say ‘who would harm me?’ However, crimes will be committed as long as criminals have the opportunity. We have to make sure we don’t give them the opportunity,” she said.

Safety resources for members and associations, including materials to share in the office or online, safety presentations, videos, articles, and webinars are all available online at www.realtor.org/safety. Information on safety smartphone apps, safety products and a list of safety experts are also available.

The National Association of Realtors®, “The Voice for Real Estate,” is America’s largest trade association, representing more than 1.1 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries.


Read more: NAR Prioritizes Member Safety in 2015 and Beyond

SAN DIEGO (November 16, 2015) – The more than one million members of the National Association of Realtors® will soon have free access to electronic forms and transaction management software from REALTOR Benefits® Program partner zipLogix.

zipLogix is a powerful, easy-to-use real estate forms and transaction management software platform that helps real estate professionals improve their efficiency, productivity and profitability. As the exclusive and official forms software for NAR, more than 600,000 Realtors® already use zipLogix applications, and more than 900,000 NAR members are currently entitled to use zipLogix products through association member benefits or individual purchases.

“NAR is Realtors®’ business advantage, and the association is committed to making sure Realtors® have the latest technology tools to succeed in today’s dynamic real estate environment,” said Chris Polychron, executive broker with 1st Choice Realty in Hot Springs, Arkansas. “Now Realtors® will have access to the real estate forms they want, when they need them. We’re excited to now offer industry leader zipLogix’s tools as a member benefit to all Realtors®. I hope all of our members take advantage of this new benefit to help them save time and money and better succeed in their business.”

Realtor® associations that license their forms to zipLogix make it easy for their members to access the most up-to-date local and state forms library. Beyond zipForm Plus®, Realtors® will also be able to manage transactions through zipLogix’s transaction management system zipTMS™, and store transactional documents to meet their state’s Department of Real Estate requirements.

“As a Realtor® association-owned company, zipLogix is committed to Realtors®’ success,” said zipLogix Chairman of the Board Mark Peterson. “We look forward to expanding our partnership with NAR and helping facilitate transactions for even more Realtors® and their clients.”

Expanded zipLogix tools for brokers and local and state Realtor® associations will also be offered at exclusive members-only pricing. Along with access to forms, transaction management tools and document storage, brokers have additional options available to them, including measurement and reporting tools as well as oversight and management of their agent’s transactions to complete contracts more efficiently and assist with risk management.

The zipLogix member benefit will be available to Realtors® in early 2016. Members and associations can learn more about at www.realtor.org/forms.

NAR’s REALTOR Benefits® Program offers practical solutions for Realtors® on the products and services they use every day. The program includes offerings in a variety of categories from nearly 30 companies recognized as leaders in their respective industries.

Fraser, Mich.-based zipLogix is a technology company created by, owned by and working for real estate professional to improve productivity and efficiency industry wide. Its software automates and simplifies the repetitive and complex steps of real estate transaction, and is used by more than 650,000 real estate professionals across the country. Visit zipLogix.com to learn more.

The National Association of Realtors®, “The Voice for Real Estate,” is America’s largest trade association, representing over 1.1 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries.

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Read more: Realtors® to Receive zipForm Plus® and zipTMS™ as Free Member Benefit

San Diego (November 16, 2015) — Tom Salomone, a second generation Realtor® from Coral Springs, Florida, was installed today as 2016 president of the National Association of Realtors® at the association's Board of Directors meeting during the 2015 REALTORS® Conference & Expo. Salomone has been a licensed real estate agent for 40 years and is broker/owner of Real Estate II, a firm specializing in residential real estate.

Salomone was NAR's 2015 president-elect and 2014 first vice president. In 2012, he served as NAR's director of REALTOR® Party activities. He also served as the liaison for the Issues Mobilization, Political Involvement, and REALTOR® Political Action Committees. In 2007, Salomone was NAR's Region 5 vice president, serving Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. He was elected Florida REALTORS® president in 2003 and treasurer in 2001 and was named Florida's Realtor® of the Year in 2005. Salomone serves the community through a number of different organizations, including the Boys & Girls Clubs of America.

Bill Brown, a second generation Realtor® from Oakland, California, is the 2016 president-elect. He has been a Realtor® for more than 35 years and is the founder of Investment Properties, a division of the family real estate business founded by his father William H. Brown, and focuses on the sale of existing apartment buildings to both institutional and private capital investors. Brown has served in numerous positions at the local, state and national levels, including as an NAR director since 1991, the 2004 chairman of the RPAC Trustees, a committee liaison in 2005 and 2011, and 2012 vice president for Region 13, comprised of California, Hawaii, and Guam.

Elizabeth Mendenhall is 2016 NAR first vice president. She has been a Realtor® for 19 years and is CEO of RE/MAX Boone Realty in Columbia, Missouri. Mendenhall is a sixth-generation Realtor® and holds numerous real estate designations. On the national level, she chaired NAR's Strategic Planning Committee in 2012, served as vice president of committees in 2011 and was the NAR liaison to association leadership in 2008. In 2010, the Missouri Association of Realtors® elected Mendenhall president; she also served as president of the Columbia Board of Realtors® and was named their Realtor® of the Year in 2003.

Michael McGrew, a Realtor® from Lawrence, Kansas, is the 2016 NAR treasurer. A Realtor® for more than 30 years, he is the CEO/Chairman of McGrew Real Estate. McGrew was NAR treasurer in 2014 and 2015 and chaired both the Finance Committee and the Reserve Investment Advisory Board. He has served for nearly a decade on NAR's Board of Directors and five years on the Executive Committee. McGrew is on the board of directors of Sentrilock, the REALTORS® Relief Foundation and the Reaume Foundation. He served NAR as the vice president for Region 9, representing Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri and Oklahoma, in 2003 and was president of the Kansas Association of Realtors® in 1998.

Michael Labout is 2016 NAR vice president. He has been a Realtor® since 1982 and is a broker with ERA Shields Real Estate in Colorado Springs, Colorado, specializing in residential property. Labout has been involved with NAR for decades; he sat on the board of directors in 2006 and has served on committees for nominating, political communications, policy and the Leadership Academy. He's also served on the Colorado Association of Realtors®' Leadership Team, Executive Committee and Leadership Council. Locally, the Pikes Peak Association of Realtors® elected Labout president in 2001.

Sherri Meadows is also 2016 NAR vice president. Meadows has been a Realtor® for 33 years and is broker/owner of Keller Williams offices in Gainesville, Ocala and Summerfield, Florida. She has served on NAR's Board of Directors since 2007 and chaired the REALTOR® Party Member Involvement Committee in 2013 and the Membership Structure Audit Presidential Advisory Group in 2012. Meadows was Florida Realtors® president in 2014 and Ocala/Marion County Association of Realtors® president in 2002.

NAR's 2016 regional vice presidents are: Kevin Sears, Springfield, Massachusetts, Region 1 (Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont); Bette McTamney, Skippack, Pennsylvania, Region 2 (New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania); JoAnne Poole, Glen Burnie, Maryland, Region 3 (Delaware, District of Columbia, Maryland, Virginia and West Virginia); Gordon D. Seay, Greenville, South Carolina, Region 4 (Kentucky, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee); Nancy Lane, Flowood, Mississippi, Region 5 (Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands);

Meg J. Casper, Fort Thomas, Kentucky, Region 6 (Michigan and Ohio); Charles Shook, Lafayette, Indiana, Region 7 (Illinois, Indiana and Wisconsin); James P. Cormier, Coon Rapids, Minnesota, Region 8 (Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota and South Dakota); Joe B. Pryor, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, Region 9 (Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri and Oklahoma);

Matthew Ritchie, Alexandria, Louisiana, Region 10 (Louisiana and Texas); Kenny Parcell, Spanish Fork, Utah, Region 11 (Arizona, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming); V.Faye Nelson, Kennewick, Washington, Region 12 (Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington); and Colleen A. Badagliacco, San Jose, California, Region 13 (California, Hawaii and Guam).

The National Association of Realtors®, "The Voice for Real Estate," is America's largest trade association, representing 1 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries.

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Read more: NAR Installs 2016 Officers

SAN DIEGO (November 16, 2015) – Cynthia Shelton, a Realtor® from Orlando, has received the National Association of Realtors® 2015 Distinguished Service Award. The honor is presented yearly to no more than two of NAR’s more than one million members. Winners were recognized at the REALTORS® Conference & Expo in San Diego.

NAR established the DSA in 1979 to honor Realtors® who have made outstanding contributions to the real estate industry and who serve as leaders in their local communities. The award is considered the highest honor an NAR member can receive; recipients must be active at the local, state and national association levels, but must not have served as NAR president. NAR President Chris Polychron presented the award to Shelton.

“For four decades, Cynthia Shelton has been a staple in the Realtor® community, heavily involved on the local, state and national level, and I am proud to honor her with this award,” said Polychron, executive broker with 1st Choice Realty in Hot Springs, Arkansas. “Cynthia’s commitment to the profession and her tireless work for Realtors® and clients is inspiring. On behalf of the entire Realtor® family, I thank her for her continued dedication.”

Shelton has been a Realtor® for 40 years and is director of investment sales at Colliers International Central Florida. In her current role, Shelton is part of an investment team with Kane Morris-Webster, providing acquisitions and disposition services of retail properties to private and institutional clients, while also working with servicers and lenders with workouts of distressed properties.

“I am honored to receive NAR’s Distinguished Service Award,” Shelton said. “I am proud to be a member of the Realtor® family and get to help guide clients find properties that meet their needs and drive economic growth in the local community. I feel lucky to be a part of something bigger, and I thank all of my friends and colleagues for being partners in this with me.”

An active NAR member, Shelton has held many leadership positions throughout the organization during her tenure as a Realtor®, including serving on the board of directors. Shelton served as a regional vice president in 2011, was a liaison for five NAR presidents and has led several NAR committees. She is also in the REALTORS® Political Action Committee Hall of Fame and is a Certified Commercial Investment Member, or CCIM, an institute affiliate of NAR. She is currently serving as the 2015 committee liaison for Second Century Ventures and special projects. Shelton was also the 2002 international president of CCIM.

At the state level, Shelton served as Florida Realtors® president in 2009, a challenging time for the industry. Shelton navigated the association through the downturn, getting the association’s finances in order at a time when the state’s Realtor® membership dropped 28 percent and repositioning the association for future growth. Shelton managed to yield program savings of $1.2 million and personnel savings of $1 million while also spearheading a rebranding campaign to usher in a new era for the association. Shelton was named Realtor® of the Year in Florida in 2010 and currently serves on the board of directors. In the past, Shelton serviced as chair of the state association’s Past Presidents Advisory Council, Nominating Committee, Executive Committee, Building Committee, Strategic Planning Committee, and many others.

Locally, Shelton served as president of the Greater Tampa Association of Realtors® in 1994 and has led several committees of the Orlando Regional Realtors® Association, Greater Tampa Association of Realtors® and the Vancouver Clark County Association of Realtors®.  She is currently a member of both the Orlando Regional Realtors® and the Central Florida Commercial Association of Realtors®.

Shelton began her career in 1975 practicing residential real estate in Washington State and began moving toward commercial work in 1983. She relocated to Florida in 1985 and worked with KinderCare Learning Centers for 10 years, acquiring and developing childcare centers around the state and consulting with employers about onsite childcare at workplaces. Shelton then also served as vice president of acquisitions at Commercial Net Lease Realty Inc., until she took her current position at Colliers International Central Florida.

Shelton has been married for 40 years to fellow Realtor® Mike Shelton. The two have a daughter, Alexandria, who resides in Tallahassee with her husband, Andy Thornquest.

The National Association of Realtors®, “The Voice for Real Estate,” is America’s largest trade association, representing over 1.1 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries.


Read more: NAR Presents Realtor® Cynthia Shelton with Distinguished Service Award

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