Real Estate Agent Magazine News & Commentary Fresh Perspectives with New Leadership

Fresh Perspectives with New Leadership

NAR has a new leadership team that is ready to make progress.
Market conditions that are unprecedented. Ongoing litigation. Culture reform demands. It is clear that the National Association of REALTORS (r) needs strong leadership. NAR has a commitment to strengthening the association and defending REALTORS and their enormous value.Kevin Sears became the NAR President on Jan. 8 after Tracy Kasper resigned. Sears, a Springfield, Mass.-based real estate professional with 30 years of experience, has held numerous leadership positions in local, state, and national associations, including 16 on the NAR Board of Directors. Sears, a second generation small business owner, owns an independent residential brokerage company and property management firm. He has first-hand experience of the challenges that the association’s membership faces.

We understand the stress and pain that our members feel. Every day, I deal with tenants, landlords, buyers and sellers. “I think it is important that the members hear this,” he says.

Sears parents raised their six kids to value service. They spent the first two years of their marriage in Catholic missions. He says that his parents instilled the value of service in their six children from a young age.

Sears’s journey to the presidency has been driven by a team-oriented mindset, and he has shown this through his involvement in committees such as those for fundraising, advocacy, community service, and education. Sears served as NAR’s Vice President for Region 1 in 2016, which included Connecticut, Massachusetts Maine, New Hampshire Rhode Island, and Vermont.

Sears earned a Bachelor of Arts in History from Providence College, Rhode Island. He was a Division I diver on the diving squad and received a scholarship. He received an MBA from Western New England University, Springfield.

After Sears was installed, in mid-January the Leadership Team unanimously decided to nominate two additional members of the 2024 Leadership Team — Vince Malta from San Francisco, and Sharon Millett from Auburn, Maine. Malta and Millett have a long history of real estate experience. Millett was the 1999 NAR President and Malta was the 2020 NAR President. Sears says that Sharon and Vince are committed to NAR’s mission. “They join us in our efforts to further the business of the Association by focusing on legal, business, and advocacy challenges which are foremost in the minds of all real estate professionals as well as the clients that we serve.”

Purpose-driven Partnership

NAR has seen a number of leadership changes in the past year. The 2023 Leadership team announced in November the appointment of Nykia Wright as interim chief executive officer. Wright brings to NAR a wealth of executive leadership experience and strategic advisory expertise. She has been at the forefront of defending NAR’s mission and driving key priorities among critical stakeholders. She also works with the Leadership Team and members to improve the culture.

Wright said in a message she sent to her staff on the first day of her tenure: “We face challenges, but we also have opportunities, and only through working together can we achieve our ambitious goals.” It is time to focus our attention on NAR’s missions.

Suzanne Bouhia was appointed chief marketing and communication officer of NAR in December. Bouhia, who has 25 years’ experience in multichannel campaigns and a proven track record for success, worked closely with Wright and 2024 Leadership to identify how to improve the existing communication channels to ensure that members and staff are informed about critical issues ranging from federal policy proposals, the culture-change effort, and ongoing litigation.

Bouhia said, “It’s my privilege to shape NAR’s perspective and amplify the voice of the 1.5 million members in the real estate sector and beyond.”

These leaders will help NAR to move forward in an industry that is constantly changing.

Leadership Team 2024 NAR

The 2024 Leadership Team is a group of professionals with extensive knowledge in the industry, real estate expertise and leadership experience spanning decades. They are passionate about serving buyers, sellers and property owners across the country.

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