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The Williamsburg Association of REALTORS plans their day of visits to their legislators in the General Assembly Building.

Last night I was exhausted but too excited to sleep, that’s what VAR Legislative & Education Conference does to you! My head was spinning with ideas shared, “friends” met for first time face to face, RPAC, so I was up late in the night writing….

Wow – I’m just wrapping up day two of four here in Richmond at our VAR Legislative & Education Conference.
Click here for Full Schedule of events.
I’m really too tired to be writing this blog but also too excited not to write it.

Day one was a long “1/2 day”.

My first session was on Policy Manuals taught by VAR Legal Guru: Lem Marshall. While geared mostly to the Broker Office poffice manuals, I took many notes about things that also would relate to our Local Association Manual.

Virginia Managers Council hosted Broker Roundtables – speed dating style. 4 tables each with a “date” or host with a pre-selected topic of discussion. Topics included “How to keep a positive attiutude in the office” (my personal office favorite method is to hold a purring cat), Operating a Virtual Office, Business Planning for Office & Agents & Managing the Brokerage Books. More details to come in a later post.

Day 2 has been a full day. This is the day that REALTORS storm the Hill. Morning Brief on important issues & Bills currently in the house & senate then the march or bus ride to the hill for “face time” with your representatives. While I attended the briefing, I decided to take the morning to meet with our local association executive & make plans for our roll out to membership of our new proposed Strategic Plan. Then to meet with Harrisonburg’s Association 2007 President. The exchange of information & spirit of cooperation is profound. Sallye – a licensed VAR Instructor offered to help with some education programs being developed.

RPAC Awards Luncheon and wrap up of the Day on the HIll. VAR’s is the second largest PAC in the state and a well respected for being the voice of property right issues. RPAC goal for this year is lofty & was kicked off with quite the performance by “THE RPAC DIVAS” – you really had to be there for that one!

IMAG – Information Management Advoacy Group. This is my first year on one of the AGs, I must say I am impressed with the depth of knowledge of both the volunteers & the staff liasons involved in IMAG. (I’m very proud to see 3 members of my VLA 2007 class members at the table.) Ben Martin, CAE Communications Director unleashed the social media bug on VAR last fall. VARbuzz.com, VAR Facebook Group, VAR Linkedin Group are all part of the official VAR social media plan. Jovan Hackley, the new Marketing Manager is sharp! look for the new “TOP 10″ postcard – (download the pdf here). Just wait until you see the new member plan he is working on! I’d be remiss not to mention Lisa Noon, VP Marketing & Communications & Scott Rogers, Chair of IMAG.

A side note: There are a large number of Virginian REALTORS that participate in social media conversations on a daily basis with a national “group” of REALTORS. We share market info, tech tools & advice, send & recieve referrals, talk about our day, share jokes and troubles – we consider ourselves friends BUT many have never met face to face. Today several of us met face to face for the first time. Pretty cool experience even if I am the old lady of the bunch! Make sure to read:
A Cynic Converted … “Hello. My name is Jeremy, and I was a cynic.”

As if that’s not enough next was a video blog interview with Ben Martin talking with Tony Arko, Technology Chair DAAR & myself about the use of the Ning platform of social media as a communication tool for our local REALTOR associations. We’ve been sharing information, tips, tools but had never met in person. Boy do I have some great ideas for our new Information Management Committe & their website project!

A quick visit to the I-81 Corridor meeting. The AEs had a few questions & input for IMAG new member project & that wrapped up the daylight hours of the day.

A fast run to drop off computer, then on to the Legisaltive Reception to rub elbows with our elected officials. AND rub elbows is the right term, the pre-registration numbers for this year indicate this will be a record breaking attendence.

Finally, dinner with 3 members of VLA 2007. Then back to the hotel to prepare for tomorrow.

First meeting tomorrow – 7:30 am. Night all! I can’t wait to meet Michael Wurzer, FlexMLS, who will speaking at the MLS Forum!

Note: this is cross posted on Musings from the Valley of Virginia