About Jon Broadbooks

Jon Broadbooks is Vice President/Communications for Illinois REALTORS®. He serves as editor of online and print content for the association's communications including the Illinois REALTOR® magazine and e-newsletters. He conducts spokesperson training seminars and oversees website development for the Association.

REEF raised $10,000 at Fall Business Meetings fundraiser

Illinois REALTORS® supported Illinois Real Estate Educational Foundation with a “Fun-Raiser.”

Illinois REALTORS® pitched in to help support real estate education at a fundraiser that married the Cubs game, a bags tournament and mans chances to win wine.

The Real Estate Education Foundation held the “Fun-raiser” as part of the Fall Business Meetings in Naperville, raising nearly $10,000 for the foundation’s programs. REEF helps fund scholarships for those seeking to advance their real estate careers.

The event was partially sponsored by the Illinois Young Professionals Network.

Illinois REALTORS® honors 2 association presidents for service posthumously

Two Illinois REALTORS® presidents were honored for their service at a meeting of the association’s Advisory Council held on Wednesday in Naperville.

Proclamations were read outlining their work and contributions to the real estate industry as part of the program at a dinner held at the Chicago Marriott Naperville.

Those honored were:

  • Donald J. Ursin, who died in August, was Illinois REALTORS® president in 1981. The Chicago-area REALTOR® guided the association through a severe economic downturn. He was noted for shaping state lending regulations and as an advocate for fair housing. He was the 1989 Illinois REALTOR® of the Year.
  • Arlen Speckman died in March, and was Illinois REALTORS® president in 1990. A Kankakee-area REALTOR®, he was a staunch supporter of the association’s education mission and was the state’s 1998 REALTOR® of the Year.

The Advisory Council is comprised of Illinois REALTORS® past presidents.

Leadership Development class presents on REALTOR® advocacy

Illinois REALTORS® 2017 Leadership Development Class gets ready to present to the Executive Committee on Wednesday, Oct. 11, 2017.

The Illinois REALTORS® Leadership Development Class presented its suggestions for promoting the association’s advocacy efforts as part of the Fall Business Meetings in Naperville on Wednesday.

Class members made suggestions on how to best promote programs in areas ranging from fights against Home Rule initiatives to getting the word out to members on core issues.

The Leadership Development Class members are selected to take part in the year-long course, which focuses on building the skills they will need to serve in local, state and national REALTOR® associations.

The presentation on Monday was made before the Executive Committee, which is comprised of the association’s leaders. Each year the Leadership Class picks a project to work on.

The Leadership Development participants are: Ayn Bartok, Michael Gobber, Terri Jeffries, Becky Kirchner, Eric Porter, Debbie Prodehl, Timothy Ryan, Michael Simpson, Dena Turner, Andy Velkme, Jim Waller, and Joyce Zelazik.

Two seeking NAR’s top office visit Illinois REALTORS®

Illinois REALTORS® hosted candidates hoping to become president in 2021 on Tuesday, Oct. 10, in Naperville. Sherri Meadows from Florida and Charlie Oppler from New Jersey appeared before the state association’s NAR directors. At left is Oppler and Illinois REALTORS® President-elect Matt Difanis. At right is former Illinois REALTORS® president and current NAR regional vice president Pat Dalessandro and Meadows.

Illinois REALTORS®’ representatives met with two candidates vying to lead the National Association of REALTORS® at the association’s Fall Business Meetings.

Sherri Meadows and Charlie Oppler interviewed as part of their push to become president of the National Association of REALTORS®. They screened with Illinois REALTORS® NAR directors.


  • Meadows, CIPS, CRB, GRI, of Ocala, Fla., is a NAR regional vice president. She’s been a REALTOR® for more than 33 years, and is broker/owners of Keller Williams offices in three central Florida cities. She was president of Florida REALTORS®.
  • Oppler, of Franklin Lakes, N.J., is 2015 NAR Vice President and a partner in Prominent Properties with Sotheby’s International Realty. He’s former president of the New Jersey Association of REALTORS® and a REALTOR® Party director.

The candidates visited as part of their campaign to become president in 2021.

Williams, Wagner honored with achievement awards

REALTOR® Frank Williams speaks at the inaugural banquet for the Chicago Association of REALTORS® on Monday, Oct. 9, 2017. Photo by Matt Difanis.

Several Illinois REALTORS® were honored Monday night with awards at the inaugural of the Chicago Association of REALTORS®.

  • Frank Williams, a pioneer in the fair housing movement in Chicago, was honored with induction into the CAR Hall of Fame. He’s the founder of FJ Williams Realty, and served as the association’s president in 1990.
  • Dan Wagner, former CAR president and 2018 Illinois REALTORS® president-elect, was named REALTOR® of the Year for the Chicago association. Wagner is senior vice president for government relations at the Inland Real Estate Group of Companies.

Illinois REALTORS® board member Rebecca Thomson was installed as CAR’s 2018 president at the event held at the Radisson Blue Aqua Hotel in Chicago.