The National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) just named Victoria Gillespie as its new chief marketing and communications officer—a role it believes will be crucial in helping to drive member engagement and satisfaction. In addition, starting on Oct. 15, Shannon McGahn will take the post of NAR’s senior vice president of Government Affairs, becoming the first woman in NAR’s 110-year history to hold this position.
McGahn succeeds Jerry Giovaniello, who is retiring at the end of 2018 after 37 years of backing key legislative and regulatory issues before Congress, the White House and federal agencies for NAR. According to NAR, these changes to the senior management team will help serve its 1.3 million members more effectively, while also focusing on the consumer relationship and enhancing the REALTOR® brand.
“The addition of Victoria and Shannon’s strategic leadership to our already powerful team will help us once again make real estate a topline issue,” says NAR CEO Bob Goldberg. “Together, they will lead our strategic direction in Washington and around the country to better serve our members’ interests.”
Gillespie brings over 30 years of industry experience, previously having owned and operated her own real estate agency for over 12 years, as well as served as the senior vice president of the REALTORS® Federal Credit Union and senior vice president of Enterprise Marketing and Communications for Northwest Federal Credit Union.
“Victoria’s extensive experience makes her the ideal choice to lead our marketing and communications,” says NAR President Elizabeth Mendenhall. “Her strategic vision and commitment to developing innovative concepts will complement our fabulous lobbying and policy team.”
“I’m thrilled to take on this new role at NAR and put my knowledge of the real estate industry to use for our members,” says Gillespie. “Having spent much of my career in the industry, there are tremendous opportunities to increase the awareness of the value and services that NAR offers so that our members understand that NAR is a radically member-centric organization. I look forward to working with our talented team to do so.”
McGahn previously served as the staff director for the Committee on Financial Services in the U.S. House of Representatives and as communications director for the House Republican Conference. Her experience on the Hill will help guide NAR’s position on significant property rights legislation.
“Shannon is a proven star in the emerging generation of 21st century advocacy leadership,” Mendenhall says. “Her ability to work across the aisle and develop bipartisan solutions will position NAR as a player able to shape legislation and regulatory policy in a period of upheaval and generational changes in America.”
“I’m excited to join NAR and bring my experience in the legislative and executive branches to support policies that not only benefit members, but promote property ownership for everyday Americans,” says McGahn. “On behalf of NAR’s 1.3 million members, I look forward to promoting the American dream of homeownership, bolstering private property rights and emphasizing the financial security and other associated benefits of owning real property.”
The announcement comes following NAR’s organizational restructuring, made in January this year. The association discussed its goals and initiatives in RISMedia’s Real Estate magazine this summer, and Goldberg was on hand at RISMedia’s 2018 Real Estate CEO Exchange this September with a firsthand look at how the organization has pivoted and progressed.
For more information, please visit www.nar.realtor.