Back in 2005 when I first joined Brown Harris Stevens, I threw a small holiday luncheon for all my relocation friends. At the end of a wonderful afternoon together, I realized we had something good going. On the way home that evening, I was thinking of how we could make something special out of this meeting that would not add more pressure to all our busy careers. All in attendance at the luncheon were asked to be a founding member (and they are distinguished on our member directory with an asterisk) and thus, “WoMen in Relocation” was born!
All members must be involved in the relocation industry and we all have an equal voice. It was also decided that we were going to support smaller communities that had real-estate based needs that don’t get the national support. If you would like to be a member-in-good-standing and appear on our website, the only requirement is an annual donation to the group we are supporting. There is no initiation or annual fee. Although it would be lovely if all members could make it to our meetings, the most important thing to us is the groups we support. Our goal every year is 100% member participation so we can do the maximum for these small groups we choose to support.
In 2014, Ashley McEvers, Willis Allen Real Estate, and Lauren Bensinger offered to start-up chapters in Southern and Northen California, which are now blended into one group. In 2015, we were able to support three local groups and raised over $10,000 combined! Our first year, we barely reached $1,000. For now, we plan to run all chapters out of New York, picking groups in all areas so members can choose which one to support.
WoMen in Relocation has supported: Support for our Troops, Teaneck Armory Center,The Bridge Fund of Westchester/New York, Bethany House, Heartworks of NJ and and this year, Furniture Sharehouse. We have donated to supply neckrolls to soldiers and even adopted a soldier and her daughter who was being deployed later that year for Christmas. Also, we supported New Jersey communities with gift cards after Hurricane Sandy.
In 2017, we added a “Spirit Award” to the member that has truly epitomized the spirit of giving. The first recipient was Barb Barisonek of Turpin Realtors and it was a wonderful surprise!
Founder, Women in Relocation