REALTORS® Kmiecik and Hobbs consider cyber security enhancements in DC

NAR Federal Technology Policy Advisory Board Chair John Kmiecik

The National Association of REALTORS® Federal Technology Policy Advisory Board met early Tuesday at the NAR Legislative Meetings and Trade Expo in Washington, D.C., and two Illinois members were involved in a discussion of strengthening cyber security.

REALTOR® John Kmiecik of Century 21 Affiliated in Oak Lawn, is chairman and REALTOR® Michael Hobbs, of Pahroo Appraisal & Consultancy in Chicago, is part of the advisory board. Both were on hand as Joe Sullivan of CRT Labs presented “Best Practices for Cyber Security in Real Estate” for NAR.

Michael Hobbs

The board is working on protecting members and their domestic and global transactions from cyber security threats. NAR REach® organizations presented some great products that can help protect members and their clients in the U.S. and internationally.

Illinois REALTORS® Invite Veterans for a Session on Homeownership



In partnership with the City of Aurora Veterans Advisory Council, the Illinois REALTORS® are hosting a Homeownership 101 session in an effort to equip and educate our American Heroes on the basics of homeownership.

Illinois REALTORS® President Doug Carpenter, who is also a U.S. Air Force Veteran, will be kicking off the afternoon on May 22 at the Prisco Center in Aurora Illinois. He will be followed by a series of presenters that will cover credit and credit scoring and preparing for the loan application.

Also participating in the afternoon event is Jack Persin, chair of the Illinois REALTORS® Veterans Task Force and Veteran of the U.S. Navy. He will walk through the basics of a home search and writing an offer. Download a flyer for the event.

Full information of this session and the rest of the weeks events can be found at

Illinois REALTORS® meet with Japanese Consulate

(l to r) Keizo Shirakura, Hisayo Matsumoto, REALTOR® Ayumi DeLoney and REALTOR® Vicky Silvano.

Another successful connection was made within the Consulate Liaison program this week. REALTOR® Ayumi DeLoney, Broker with Jameson Sotheby’s International Realty and Illinois REALTOR® Liaison to the Consulate General of Japan led a discussion with Economic Consul staff to discuss ways we can partner and share information that will result in broadening the Illinois economy and raising awareness of the REALTOR® brand globally.

(l to r) Vicky Silvano, Keizo Shirakura, Hisayo Matsumoto and Ayumi DeLoney.

Also, according to Erik Brejla with the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, “Japan is an important part of the economic landscape of Illinois. Japanese companies employ roughly 50,000 Illinois residents so we appreciate the Illinois REALTORS® engagement with the Consulate’s office in order to foster a unified message that Illinois is open for business and is a leader on things like infrastructure, logistics and technology.”

Joining DeLoney at the meeting was Global Policy staffer, Sharon Gorrell, and Chair of the Consulate Liaison Working Group, REALTOR® Vicky Silvano. The three met with Hisayo Matsumoto, Special Researcher for the Consulate General, and Keizo Shirakura, Economic Section Consul, and shared statistics on Illinois and the recent 2017 Housing Forecast.

Shirakura stated, “We are glad to have a source to share economic data and real estate information and look forward to working together.”

(l to r) Sharon Gorrell, Keizo Shirakura, Hisayo Matsumoto and Ayumi DeLoney.

Prominent Illinois REALTOR participates in important discussion

(l to r) Former state senator and speaker of the Illinois House Lee Daniels, Daniel L. Goodwin and Dan Wagner

Inland Real Estate Chairman Daniel L. Goodwin facilitated a discussion last week with Illinois Senate President John Cullerton. The discussion took place at the 10th Annual Governmental Forum hosted by Elmhurst College and sponsored by Illinois REALTORS®.

Mr. Goodwin asked a variety of questions involving the state budget, education, the political map, and several other issues. Senate President Cullerton also shared a detailed presentation on the Illinois budget situation and the proposal known as the “Grand Bargain” developed by he and Senate Republican Leader Christine Radogno, who was also in attendance at the event.


Illinois REALTORS® engage local partners in global business

Several members of our Consulate General Liaison Program (l to r): Ahmed Badat (S. Africa), Maurice Hampton (Canada), Betty Milam (Ecuador), Andy Velkme (Latvia), John LaTourneau (Ireland) and Mikus Kins (Lithuania).

Several REALTOR® partner groups gathered last week in the Chicago area to learn more about serving the real estate needs of international customers.

On Thursday, the Illinois REALTORS® sponsored the Chicago Association of REALTORS® (CAR) Global Council event, “CANADA: What You Need to Know: Country, Culture, Clients and Costs!” Speakers discussed tax policy, marketing strategies, international mortgages, culture and geography of the provinces, and the housing market. Attendees asked questions and listened to short presentations during a series of roundtable discussions. Global staff members of the National Association of REALTORS® participated as well.

On Friday, the Northern Illinois Commercial Association of REALTORS held their monthly Global Business Council meeting. Bill Caton, Principal of Caton Commercial and a founding member of the Council spoke about the 2017 MIPIM real estate conference in Cannes, France. Several of the Illinois REALTOR® Consulate Liaisons also participated in the meeting and the discussion included strategies to promote commercial international business efforts.

The state and local associations are developing programming and strategies designed to better equip members to serve international real estate customers and to motivate them to expand their sphere of influence into the global realm. The Illinois REALTORS® are excited to be part of the expansion and excitement!