Illinois REALTORS® meet new consul general to Lithuania

Illinois REALTORS® Consulate Liaison Mikus Kins, meets with Mantvydas Bekešius, Consul General of the Republic of Lithuania. Photo: Sharon Gorrell, Illinois REALTORS®.

Illinois REALTORS® Consulate Liaison, Mikus Kins and Global Policy Advisor, Sharon Gorrell recently met with the newly appointed Consul General of the Republic of Lithuania, Mantvydas Bekešius.

Prior to his current appointment, Bekešius was vice minister of foreign affairs and worked on many partnerships. He said he is looking forward to learning more about the real estate industry in the U.S. and doing what he can to build partnerships between the real estate industries in Illinois and the Republic of Lithuania.

The association’s Consulate General Liaison Program builds business connections between diplomatic delegations and the state’s real estate industry. It now has 25 Illinois REALTORS® who work with consulates in all corners of the world.

Illinois REALTORS® support scholarship fundraiser and networking event

REALTORS® Zeke Morris (left) and Dale Taylor were all smiles at the Dearborn REALTIST golf outing.

This week the Dearborn REALTIST® Board held its annual William G. Grey Scholarship golf outing in Tinley Park with the Illinois REALTORS® as sponsors and participants in the day’s events.

Illinois REALTORS® President-Elect Matt Difanis shared his photography talent throughout the day, networked with golfers and had great conversations with Dearborn President Courtney Jones. Difanis and Jones talked about how the Illinois REALTORS® and the Dearborn REALTISTS® can stand together in efforts for a diverse leadership and voice in the industry and increasing black homeownership in Illinois.

See photo gallery below.

Consulate liaisions work together on strategy

(l to r) Andy Velkme, John LeTourneau, Vicky Silvano, Betty Milam, Marsha Collins-Mroz, Jana Herdova and Don Pasek.

Wednesday evening in Chicago the Illinois REALTORS® consulate liaisons got together for an after-hours session to network, share information and to strategize on ways to collaborate and an improve methods to convey the REALTOR® message to foreign representatives.

With the program in its second year, the team has increased in size and many have had great success in their initial meetings with the Consulate offices. Having that experience under their belt gives them the ability to share best practices with their colleagues and team members.

This informal networking session gave opportunity to build relationships and learn from each other. They also had a special guest via Skype. Sharon von Schoenberg, Program Manager for Global Services for the The Canadian Real Estate Association called in and shared information on how our members can tap into information and resources with their Canadian colleagues.

Learn about global real estate either internationally or domestically through CIPS courses

Two options to obtain your Certified International Property Specialist (CIPS) designation are being offered in the coming weeks.

Want to stay local? The full course is offered by the Chicago Association of REALTORS® during the week of Aug. 28. Expand the August drop-down menu to get the details. Register here.

If you want a little adventure, the Minneapolis Area Association of REALTORS® is partnering with the Institute of Professional Auctioneers and Valuers in Dublin, Ireland to host a CIPS Institute the week of Oct. 16. To find out more and register, go here.

However, if neither of those options work, the National Association of REALTORS® lists plenty of others during August, September, October and November. See the NAR schedule.

Illinois REALTORS® adds to Consulate General Liaison team

Claire Sylvestre (left) is the latest addition to the Consulate General Liaison team. Joining her is Sharon Gorrell.

The Illinois REALTORS® Global Business Council is excited to add Claire Sylvestre, broker with @Properties in Lincoln Park to the Consulate General Liaison team!

While going over the details of the program we decided to dive into a bit of French culture by having lunch at a little cafe and enjoy a few French classics, Salade niçoise and Tarte flambée. Sylvestre is a native of France and has been working in the real estate industry here in the U.S. since the mid-90s. She began her career in real estate in Ohio but has been here in Illinois for more than a decade.

Claire is no stranger to international business. She has been involved in corporate relocation and is a long-time member of the French-American Chamber of Commerce in Chicago. She is active with the French Consulate and is looking forward to sharing the importance of REALTORS in an international transaction. She is actually heading to France for the month of August to visit family and also do a bit of real estate!  She is excited to share her expertise with the Illinois REALTORS® and be part of the Global team!  Welcome Claire!