June 18, 2018

Meet the 2017 Good Neighbor Finalists

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Meet the 2017 Good Neighbor Finalists

Ten finalists have been chosen for REALTOR® Magazine’s 2017 Good Neighbor Awards, selfless real estate professionals who have cumulatively raised more than $48 million for a variety of charitable causes. Now in its 18th year, the Good Neighbor Awards recognize members of the National Association of REALTORS® who have donated their time and passion to improve and enrich the lives of the people in their communities.

“The Good Neighbor Awards represent a thriving culture of giving back, and each of our finalists have made a tremendous difference in their communities,” says NAR President William E. Brown, broker-owner of Investment Real Estate in Oakland, Calif. “We congratulate this year’s 10 finalists for their outstanding efforts to help make the world a better place.”

From now until Oct. 2, the public will get the chance to learn more about these 10 practitioners and the diverse causes that drive them. Readers will also be able to cast votes for their favorite Good Neighbor finalist at The three who garner the most votes will earn grants—one for $2,500 and two for $1,250 apiece—for their charities.

The list of ten finalists will be narrowed down to five winners, who will be named on Oct. 3. Winners will receive a $10,000 grant and national media exposure for their charity, including a feature in the November/December issue of REALTOR® Magazine. The winners will also receive travel expenses to the 2017 REALTORS® Conference & Expo in Chicago, where they will accept their awards at a presentation in front of thousands of their peers. The five remaining honorable mentions will each receive a $2,500 grant.

Here are REALTOR® Magazine’s 2017 Good Neighbor Awards finalists:

Deborah Berg with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices in Birmingham, Mich., runs one of the country’s largest rummage sales, which raises $225,000 per year to support people in need through 35 nonprofits. She works year-round to secure high-value donations, and then twice a year she manages a force of more than 700 volunteers during the week-long sale events.

JoAnn and Joseph Callaway of Those Callaways Real Estate in Scottsdale, Ariz., mobilize thousands of local real estate professionals to serve as volunteer bell ringers, collecting more than $250,000 in donations for the Salvation Army. The couple also founded an innovative program that’s raised $1 million to support addiction recovery.

Sal Dimiceli, broker-owner of Lake Geneva Area Realty in Lake Geneva, Wis., founded The Time Is Now To Help, a nonprofit supporting people living in poverty. He personally responds to requests for help, providing financial counseling, emergency food assistance, transportation, child care, and rental funds. Over the last 28 years, he’s donated and raised nearly $17 million.

Lara Dolan with Keller Williams Realty Consultants in Roswell, Ga., is the driving force behind ShamRockin’ for a Cure, an annual event that has raised more than $2.5 million to help patients with cystic fibrosis. She uses her vast network of community connections to increase attendance and gain more sponsorships for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.

Bryson Garbett of Garbett Homes in Salt Lake City founded a nonprofit that provides access to education to children in the rural Chiapas region of Mexico. Over 18 years, Foundation Escalera has helped more than 100,000 students by building 177 classrooms and providing high school scholarships.

Howard “Hoddy” Hanna, chairman of Howard Hanna Real Estate Services in Pittsburgh, cofounded the Howard Hanna Children’s Free Care Fund, which donates millions toward health care for children without insurance coverage. Since 1987, Hanna and his company’s 9,000 real estate professionals have raised $14 million.

Louise McLean of RE/MAX Solutions in Merritt Island, Fla., founded the Space Coast Association of REALTORS® Charitable Foundation to offer food, clothing, school supplies, glasses, and toiletries to the more than 2,200 homeless children in Brevard County.

Mony Nop of Mony Nop Real Estate in Livermore, Calif., created a nonprofit to encourage kids to set and achieve their goals by providing leadership training and scholarships. He draws on his own experience as a child fleeing the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia to motivate thousands of middle and high school students to overcome their own challenges.

Donna Ting with Tri-Isle Realty & Development Co. in Wailuku, Hawaii, cofounded La’akea, a residential and day program for developmentally disabled adults. She used her real estate skills to find funding for and help build a community center, a farm, and store to help clients lead more independent and meaningful lives.

Kay Wilson-Bolton of Century 21 Troop Real Estate in Santa Paula, Calif., founded Many Meals, which feeds up to 600 people every Wednesday. She also distributes 30,000 pounds of food per month through a food bank and, as an ordained chaplain, she runs a center behind her real estate office where she counsels people in need.

REALTOR® Magazine’s Good Neighbor Awards is supported by primary sponsor® and Wells Fargo.