County Realtors induct new leaders, hear from school superintendent

Published 12:00 am Sunday, February 8, 2015

Salisbury – Rowan Association of Realtors

The Salisbury-Rowan Association of Realtors started the year on an upbeat note. Their January meeting was hosted by Tony Smith, this year’s president of the N.C. Association of Realtors.

Smith said that historically, the housing industry has been as much as 20 percent of the state’s GDP.

“We look forward to getting there again. Currently it is about 13 percent,” he said, adding the recession took its toll, but we are gaining speed in our recovery.

He also noted there have been conversations in Raleigh about possibly taxing the net worth of LLCs, other legal entities and independent contractors’ gross commissions. The N.C. Association of Realtors’ position is that this will negatively affect home ownership and private property rights. The challenge is trying to engage Realtors and the public to answer the calls for action. Smith noted the best thing for people to do is reach out to their local legislators and share their concern.

Smith then inducted the 2015 0fficers and directors of the Salisbury-Rowan Association of Realtors:

Monica Poole, president-elect; Mary Arey, secretary (returning); Cindy Ehrman, treasurer; Kelly Lowe, past president.

Directors: Mike Rusher and Keshia Sherrill (both returning directors), Rob Bean, Karla Costantino, Marie Leonard-Hampton and Dan Waggoner.

After inducting officers and directors, Smith introduced Treasure Faircloth, treasurer of the N.C. Association of Realtors.

Faircloth lauded Bonzie Everson, who has been very active with the state association as well as the Salisbury-Rowan one, and reviewed Everson’s long history of service to both. She then inducted Everson as 2015 president of the Salisbury-Rowan Association of Realtors.

The February meeting featured Dr. Lynn Moody, superintendent of the Rowan-Salisbury School System.

Moody stated she sees Realtors “as the first contact by prospective new residents” and was excited to share many of the ideas, programs and goals of Rowan-Salisbury School System.

She pointed out the achievement scores, which came out the first week of February, represent testing from a year and a half ago. She acknowledged the scores declined as our poverty level rose. She said drastic changes are planned to enhance academic performance and, with these enhancements, the community should see a secondary benefit to the reduction in poverty.

Moody said we cannot accelerate while we’re looking in the rearview mirror at earlier scores. She is looking toward the future with excitement, especially with the new county and school leadership demonstrating greater cooperation.

Moody also said the “digital conversion” has brought either a laptop or iPad to every third- through 12th-grade student. It is a $13 million investment in our children. Digital books are replacing worn-out and heavy textbooks. She stressed that Wi-Fi is needed everywhere in Rowan County so children without Internet at home can have access to this vital resource. Businesses are encouraged to help make it available at their locations, in addition to the parks and public buildings.

A serious goal for Moody and her staff is literacy coaches for “guided reading,” a new approach to enhanced teaching reading skills, along with a technical support person in every school building.

Moody recalled the Salisbury Post recently reported on the great collaboration between Catawba College and school system to help teachers get their master’s degree in science and math thanks to a generous donation from Fred Stanback.

Rowan-Salisbury is currently entertaining prospective special education, science and math teachers to have them “experience Salisbury” in the hope they will sign on and join the exciting new ventures in our school system. To promote our community, all were encouraged to spread the word about such events and opportunities through Facebook, Twitter, etc.

With so much progress planned, great achievement is expected. The Salisbury-Rowan School System will soon be enticing new residents (and businesses) to our area.

Moody told the Realtors in reference to housing prices, “Tell your clients, ‘Get them while they’re low, because you won’t be able to afford them in about five years.’ “

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