By Steve Francks
CEO, Washington REALTORS® Association
You may have heard RPAC leaders say this regarding the importance of REALTOR® political involvement:
“If real estate is your profession, then politics is your business.”
Well, the same saying applies to REALTOR® AEs: “If REALTOR® association management is your profession, then politics is your business.”
In my view, we have a duty to ensure that our members understand the importance of policy and political involvement. We also have an obligation to educate ourselves and our members so that REALTOR® associations, at every level, can be optimally effective when it comes to policy and politics.
Just as our members can get involved politically in different ways (investing in RPAC, responding to calls to action, volunteering for campaigns, attending meetings and hearings, you name it), so can AEs. Just as we all have different levels of experience and expertise, our organizations have different levels of expectation from their AEs.
Some of you are deeply involved in your local or state political environment. You might be a lobbyist, or a member of a council or board. Others are only tangentially involved on a personal level, or not at all.
Regardless of the varying levels of personal involvement, we all have this in common: As AEs we are obligated to understand the ways in which politics are vital to our members’ business.
This entire issue is devoted to issues advocacy and political action—from effectively addressing the public policy issues that affect our members to getting the right people elected to help us with those
issues. We all know that NAR is ramping up its ability to advocate on behalf of REALTORS® at every level. In these pages, you’ll get plenty of insight into the tools and resources available to you and your members.
Folks, we need to make policy and politics a priority for our members, or we might not recognize the world of real estate in five years.
One last personal observation: More than ever, the REALTOR® Party concept is vital to our members’ success. The political world is extremely polarized, but REALTORS® have the right issues and the right bipartisan approach to achieve our goals. I’m optimistic that we’ll be successful.
Reprinted with permission of the National Association of REALTORS®.