News & Information: Orlando REALTOR® magazine - President's Message

Professionalism, Engagement, Personal Safety

Friday, January 5, 2018  
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Orlando REALTOR® | JanuaryFebruary 2018

By Lou Nimkoff
2018 ORRA President

I am so honored to be writing you today as the 2018 president of your Orlando Regional REALTOR® Association. There are about 14,000 of us now, and I take very seriously the responsibility of keeping our team of staff and volunteers laser-focused on efforts to provide the educational programs and benefits that make our lives easier and more productive. Add in the benefit suites provided by Florida REALTORS®, NAR, and MFRMLS, and I believe that we as REALTORS® receive an amazing value for the dues we pay each year. However, ORRA leadership will never stop trying to do more without raising membership fees.

This year, I will be focusing on three initiatives to provide you with more value from your association. The first is professionalism. The REALTOR® is going to go the way of the travel agent if we can’t do a better job of showing the consumer that we bring value to the transaction. The day of being the keeper of the data is gone. I challenge each and every one of us to step up our game. If you haven’t taken ORRA’s Excellence in Professionalism - Gold Key Certification class and earned the GKC certificate, do it this year!

My second focus is member engagement. If you’re not involved in the programs and benefits that we offer, you’re really missing something! We will be reaching out to members in an effort to learn just how we can be better engaged with you. We will be asking for a small amount of time from many of you and for a greater amount of time from others, but it’s all done so that we can listen to you and hear what you want.

My last focus is REALTOR® safety. I know all of us want to help people buy and sell homes, but none of us should be willing to put our lives on the line for it. If a potential buyer or seller isn’t willing to send you their ID; isn’t willing to meet with you at the office; or isn’t willing to take whatever initial steps you and your brokerage have determined is necessary to establish a relationship, then I would question whether you should be alone with them in an empty house. There are many ways we can be smarter agents while serving as well as, or better than, we ever have! You can find tons of safety resources (articles, tips, procedures, policies, presentations, and more) currently housed in the REALTOR® Safety section of Keep watch for additional safety programs and technology offerings from ORRA as well.

Finally, I want to give a warm welcome to Cliff Long, our new chief executive officer. He is joining us from the Birmingham (Alabama) Association of REALTORS®, and I am excited to start my year as president alongside his new ideas and fresh perspectives. I also wish to thank 2017 President Bruce Elliott for the huge amount of time and effort he put into our association last year. He — along with ORRA’s board of directors, ambassadors, and more than 300 committee volunteers — deserves my sincere gratitude for making ORRA one of the country’s top 10 local REALTOR® organizations in 2017 and for making my path easier to navigate in 2018.



ORRA President Lou Nimkoff, Brio Real Estate Services LLC, can be reached at

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