Annual Convention Recap

It was “Show Time” this year in Ames as over 550 Realtors® and affiliates attended the 2018 Annual IAR Convention. Kicking off with a Pricing Strategies class on Tuesday followed by seven teams testing their furniture building skills at the YPN Kickoff event sponsored by University of Iowa Community Credit Union. The team from the Cedar Rapids Area Association defended their title.

Some of our energetic members had a lot of fun showing off their soccer skills at Bubble Soccer during our Fun Night sponsored by Veridian Credit Union. As the players soon found out, running, kicking and getting back up in those bubbles is tougher than it looks! Let’s just say there was plenty of laughing from the crowd as they watched the players bouncing around and trying to stay upright for more than 2 minutes. The Cyclone cheerleaders and Cy the mascot stopped by to celebrate and take photos. 

  Check out photos from the Annual Convention! 

2018 Convention


Hundreds of attendees earned continuing education credit during our 24 one hour sessions during the event. Bobbi Howe kicked things off as our Keynote and gave a touching story about how real estate can consume you and encouraged everyone to take time to balance their life and time with family and friends with their career. We heard a lot of great testimonials from Realtors attending other sessions from our lineup of national speakers, including Holly Mabery, Doug Devitre, Carrie Little and Kyle Killebrew.  The new Idea Exchange Luncheon was a big hit with over 140 Realtors statewide gathering to share successes and failures on a variety of topics in a rotating roundtable format. 

The REALTOR Foundation of Iowa (RFI) raised over $15,000 during the Joan Ballantyne Live and Silent Auctions. The Cyclone and Hawkeye rivalry was on full display as many bidders went against each other for game tickets for football and basketball. Special thanks to Byron Menke, our longtime auctioneer, that donates his time and expertise to RFI. All the money raised goes to help Iowans in Need. 

Dozens of attendees won prizes during the Convention. Marcy Vogt from Grinnell won the grand prize package of Google and Nest Smart Home products valued at $650! 

 Committees and Work groups Report

All of IAR’s major committees and work groups met during the Convention. 

In the Communications Committee, attendees were given short updates on several important projects. Our new RESmarts online education system is almost finished and we hope to roll it out in mid-late November. The new Housing Statstics system should roll out in October.  The annual Winter Meetings typically held in December will now be connected to our Hill Visits in February. This new two and half day event will be Feb. 5-7, 2019. Jeff Evans, Executive Officer of the Iowa Real Estate Commission, presented an update on the IREC website, the renewal process and other changes and improvements. 

The Legislative Committee discussed potential issues for the 2019 Legislative Session which begins in January.  The committee discussed E-notarization legislation, and the IAR will work with a coalition of bankers, mortgage closers, abstractors, attorneys, and others to address laws that pertain to remote and electronic notary procedures.   As technology becomes the norm for closing and real estate documents it will be necessary to have legislation dealing with E-notarization to ensure the security of closing documents and to protect from fraudulent practices.  The committee also reviewed service animal legislation that was introduced last year, and will continue to work on legislation in 2019 to establish definitions and standards for service animals in rental situations.  Other issues that will continue to be discussed for 2019 are restrictions on rentals and landlord rental caps; rural workforce housing needs; team broker definitions; homeowners association regulations; and child support lien satisfaction notifications. 

The IAR Legislative Committee will continue to work on these and other issues in the coming months to establish our legislative agenda for 2019.  Please contact the IAR if you have questions, concerns, or other issues you would like the IAR to research from a legislative perspective.  The legislation the IAR promotes is to help your business and homeowners, so please let us know!    

Board of Directors Meeting

CEO Gavin Blair with help from Brandon Foldes and Alisha King from Shyft Collective, IAR’s project management firm on the new building, gave an update on the progress of the new IAR Office. There have been some increases in construction costs due to the demand in the current market. The new IAR Building is funded through existing reserve funds. An motion to allow up to $139,702 additional funds for the build out of the new space was approved by the board. The current targeted move-in date is February 1.

A motion to clean up some language in the bylaws was presented by John Goede and approved. 

The Board of Directors approved the 2019 IAR budget which included a $20 dues increase. 


Inaugural Gala and Awards

During the IAR Inaugural Gala, almost 200 guests enjoyed the Show Time theme and the musical talents of Chad Elliott and the Redemptions. A special premiere of 3 new humorous RPAC videos were shown. Watch for those coming in an email or future board event. 2018 President Mark Kamps gave a heartfelt speech on this past year and his thanks for all of the state and local leaders in our industry. John Goede from Spencer, Iowa was installed as the 2019 IAR President. Goede encouraged everyone to continue their open dialogue and collaboration on ways to help improve our industry. 

Don Wagner’s years as an longtime IAR Educator and course writer was recognized with the Excellence in Education Award. 

Julie McQuaid’s years of service on numerous committees and work groups at the local and state level was recognized as the O.G. Powell/Joan Ballantyne Distinguished Service Award. McQuaid is from Clear Lake and is a member of both Greater Mason City Board of REALTORS® and the North Iowa Regional Board of REALTORS®. 

Jess Patton, CEO of Association Marketing Group, was bestowed with the L. Martin Lee Political Involvement Award. 

Travis Bushaw, a Realtor® and Broker/Owner from Oelwein and the Northeast Iowa Regional Board of REALTORS®, was honored with the REALTOR® of the Year award. 

The 2019 IAR Leadership Team and Regional Vice Presidents were installed as follows:

President: John Goede
 President-Elect: Scott Wendl
Vice President Jen Burkamper
Treasurer: Byron Menke
Past President:  Mark Kamps

Regional Vice Presidents 
Region 1:  Katie Slater    
Region 2:  Theresa Ruby    
Region 3:  Zelda Elwood     
Region 4:  John Dunn      
Region 5:  Renae Forsyth-Christy  
Region 6:  Shaner Magalhães      
Region 7:  Anna Mack
Region 8:  Steve Campbell

 Thanks to our SPONSORS 

Thank you to our Annual and Convention Sponsors for making this event possible!

Annual Sponsors 

Diamond Annual Sponsors
EXIT Realty

Platinum Annual Sponsors
Iowa Realty & Berkshire Hathaway Home Services

Gold Annual Sponsor
Iowa Finance Authority
Iowa Mortgage Association
Zillow Group

 Convention Sponsors

Central Iowa Board of REALTORS®
Veridian Credit Union
Des Moines Area Association of REALTORS®
University of Iowa Community Credit Union
Vizzi Media Solutions
Iowa CRS / RRC
RE/MAX Concepts
Form Simplicity
Century 21

Related Articles

Now Accepting Nominations: Gary & Judy Stevens Scholarship
2024 Events: Mark Your Calendar!
Convention 2023 RECAP: What A Year!