When John Smaby became 2019 president of the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR), he promised to continue the work of his predecessor, Elizabeth Mendenhall, and her "Own It" message.
During 2019, NAR accomplished a lot. It launched "That's Who We R," a campaign that used broadcast, print and digital advertisements to show how REALTORS® serve their customers and communities. The Federal Housing Administration adopted changes in rules for condominium financing that NAR had been pushing for a decade. The changes were expected to make more affordable options available, particularly for first-time and moderate-income buyers. NAR also rolled out a GSE reform proposal that has been gaining traction in Washington, D.C.
"Nothing we do happens in a single year. Our leadership team is building on the work of those who came before us, and our future leaders will build on what we accomplish in 2019," Smaby said in a statement. "I'm proud to be representing the greatest profession there is. With all the so-called disruption we're seeing in the industry, our members are demonstrating every day the critical role they play in the buying, selling and management of real estate."
Smaby, a second-generation REALTOR®, has worked in the industry for 40 years. He is a residential real estate broker at Edina Realty, as well as a member of the Minnesota Association of REALTORS®. He has held numerous leadership positions and has been devoted to several local causes. Smaby and his wife, Linda, a fellow REALTOR®, have been married for over 30 years.