Like so many events held this year, the Women’s Council of Realtors West Suburban installation of officers for 2021 shifted online for a very different look from the plated dinners and galas of previous years.
Citywide Title hosted fewer than 10 people on-site, including several members of the new board. Other members, including some on the incoming board, and outgoing officers joined the event via Zoom. John Gormley, CEO at Main Street Organization of Realtors, served as the installing officer.
“In your service to Women’s Council of Realtors West Suburban, you have earned the respect, appreciation and gratitude of your membership,” Gormley said, addressing the 2020 board members. “We truly are mindful of the work you’ve done throughout 2020. And even before that, and we honor you for the achievements you’ve all attained.”
Gormley called for the new board members who were present to come to the front of the room — while maintaining social distancing — and for those joining online to say “hi” via video. Each new officer received an officer toolkit that included a face mask and a name tag.
Officers named to the board for 2021 are: R’Che Danley of the CarMarc Realty Group, program director; Sheri White of US Bank, membership director; Cinthia Diaz of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, secretary; John Horton of Midwest Lending Corporation, treasurer; Laura Thon of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, president-elect; and Heather Murphy of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, president.
Gormley also recognized project team leaders: Arlene Pryce of KeySmart Mortgage, recruitment and retention; Kristen Tony, communications; Esmerelda Gil of EXIT Strategy Realty, ways and means; and Kayla Pryce of EXIT Strategy Realty, member at large.
“Think about what you think is impossible and how it can be possible,” Thon said during the event’s invocation, evoking the group’s “Getting it Done in 2021” theme for the coming year. “Think of 2020. Think of all the things we’ve done this year that maybe we didn’t think we would be able to do back in March, and how much we’ve accomplished and achieved. Part of being on this Women’s Council board always makes me think of endless possibilities. There’s a team behind us of great people that always are encouraging others to do more and to be the best you can be.”
Outgoing president Janet Bednarek of EXIT Real Estate Partners expressed gratitude for the adaptability of the group’s members and hope for a return to normalcy.
“We managed to host trivia night each week was a hit,” Bednarek said. “Everyone was beginning to miss networking, so turnouts were good. The final meeting was well-attended in October just prior to everything closing again. Zoom is a great substitute, but will never replace the in person meetings. I enjoyed working with all the board and got to know them quite well. I’m happy to see that most have decided to continue to be leaders with Women’s Council.”
New president Heather Murphy recognized John Wise of EXIT Real Estate Partners as Realtor of the Year. Jill Daniels of Jill Daniels Law was named Affiliate Member of the Year.
Murphy offered hope for a better year in 2021.
“Our 2020 team really paved the way to show how, even in a year that all seemed lost,” Murphy said. “There are ways to stay strong and succeed. Our 2021 team will build on those tools and ideas set forth and do our best to continue that momentum going. I’m extremely excited for all of the educational and networking events we already have planned for 2021. And don’t worry, we already have backup plans. Thanks to the platform that was set by the previous board, the project team members, we are ready for any situation.”