Brandi Pearl Thompson’s installation as the 2020 president of Greater Chattanooga Realtors began with a phrase not used before in the association’s 108-year history: “Mom, please raise your right hand.”
Thompson’s installation by her 8-year-old daughter, Vivian, was one of the highlights of the association’s annual installation and awards reception, which took place Jan. 9 at the Turnbull Building on Fort Street. The event featured an expansive gallery of local real estate history, global cuisine, a cash bar and a DJ.
Another high point was the declaration of Crye-Leike agent Ron Tucker as the association’s 2019 Realtor of the Year. Geoff Ramsey, Greater Chattanooga Realtors’ 2014 Realtor of the Year, made the announcement.
“While we’re strongest when we work together, every once in a while, there are individuals who stand out from the crowd and embody all that it means to be a Realtor,” Ramsey said. “It is on those individuals that our association bestows its highest honor.”
Ramsey led the committee tasked with identifying a Realtor member who had made significant contributions to the real estate industry, the Chattanooga and Tennessee associations and the local community.
Ramsey praised Tucker for being engaged in advocacy at every level of the association, for his dedication to governmental and political advocacy, and for his regular participation in state and national meetings.
“[Ron] understands the importance of the state and federal [legislative] ... visits, as well as the governance meetings that shape who we are as an industry and trade association,” Ramsey said.
In addition, Tucker is a member of Greater Chattanooga Realtors’ board of directors, a past member of several local and state association committees and task forces, and a former Tennessee Realtors director.
In addition, Tucker maintains the National Association of Realtors Military Relocation Professional designation and has supported Greater Chattanooga Realtors’ commitment to the local Snack Pack Ministry and Habitat for Humanity with his time and money.
“In short, Ron is always there to support whatever the cause on behalf of all Realtors,” Ramsey continued.
Tucker said serving his association and profession has been a pleasure. “One of the best parts of my life has been my involvement with this association. I appreciate your support – and I ain’t done yet.”
During the reception, outgoing president Kim Bass provided a recap of Greater Chattanooga Realtors’ accomplishments in 2019, which under her leadership included creating the association’s first strategic plan since 2015.
The three-year strategy covers ongoing efforts and enhancements in professional development, consumer outreach, advocacy, member engagement, technology, financial solvency and more. A one-page version and a longer, more detailed version are available at www.gcar.net/about/governing-documents.
Bass also highlighted efforts by Greater Chattanooga Realtors and its members to complete the National Association of Realtors’ Commitment to Excellent (www.C2EX.realtor) program.
The program assesses a Realtor’s expertise in areas of professionalism ranging from customer service to the use of technology. Based on the results, the platform generates customized learning paths, recommends experiences and provides resources Realtors can use to enhance their knowledge and skill sets.
“It will open your eyes to things in the industry you might not be aware of,” Bass said.
To date, 11 of the association’s members have completed the program.
Greater Chattanooga Realtors also continued its support of the Realtor Political Action Committee. In 2019, 885 members invested more than $85,000 in RPAC. This included full participation from the members of the association’s governmental affairs committee, MLS committee, Northwest Georgia Council, RPAC Committee and RPAC Trustees. It also included 30 major investors.
Bass recognized Ramsey as a new member of the RPAC Hall of Fame, an honor bestowed to donors who have given more than $25,000 to the committee. Ramsey will also be recognized in May in Washington, D.C.
“We continue to advocate on behalf of consumers to protect and promote private property rights,” Bass said.
Other achievements of Greater Chattanooga Realtors in 2019 included:
Completing the remodel of the association’s headquarters in May
Offering more than 400 continuing education hours for Tennessee and Georgia
Funding 120 Tennessee River Walk banners as part of the park’s 30th anniversary
Raising $53,000 for the Snack Pack Ministry during a trivia-themed event
Participating in multiple Habitat for Humanity of Greater Chattanooga Area builds
Grooming 10 future leaders via the association’s Leadership Academy
Placing more than 200 people from 28 brokerages on association committees
“This association is your association, and volunteering at all levels is the key to our success as an organization,” Bass said. “Thank you for serving.”
The evening concluded with the installation of the new officers and directors. Bass wrapped up her term by expressing gratitude for the opportunity to serve as president in 2019. “We had a good year, and I’m excited to see where Brandi takes us. She’s out of the box and on a different level.”
“It’s an honor to follow you,” Thompson said to Bass. “You kept us focused and moving forward. Thank you for your leadership and for leading us to be and do better.”