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Buffalo Niagara Association of Realtors installs new leadership, honors members

by jmaloni
Fri, Feb 25th 2011 03:45 pm

E. Alice Miranda was installed by U.S. Rep. Brian Higgins as the 2011 president of the Buffalo Niagara Association of Realtors at their annual installation dinner earlier this month.

An Amherst resident, Miranda has been in the real estate industry for 30 years and is with MJ Peterson Real Estate. She is the past president of the Oswego County Board of Realtors and is active on many of the New York state association committees, including being a state director. On the national level, Miranda is a director and holds a graduate Realtors institute and certified residential specialist designation. 

The theme for her presidency is "Unity between real estate, the community and government.

"We too are homeowners and represent homeowners," she said. "As Realtors, we have to have a connection to the legislative bodies and we do have the opportunity to monitor what is happening in Washington and Albany."

Other special initiatives this year include BNAR involvement in the community: Re-Tree, the Salvation Army, and Food Bank of WNY.

In addition to Miranda's installation, the following were installed as officers: Amy Winklhofer, president-elect; Louis Vinci, secretary/treasurer; Ronald Zaccagnino, vice president; presidents adviser, Michael Johnson and BNAR CEO John Leonardi. Directors serving three-year terms: Annabelle Aquilina, Mary Ann Kustich, Christie Rothschild and David Weitzel. Serving one-year terms: Peter Hunt and Daniel Symoniak as directors at large, and Elaine McCune, Joseph Rivellino and Rebecca VanDorn serving as regional directors.

Nicholas Gigante, president of the New York State Association of Realtors, installed the officers and directors of the organization.

Duncan MacKenzie, NYSAR executive officer, presented a resolution with special recognition from the New York state association, to the family of William C. Curtin, past president of the BNAR, who passed away. Curtin was very involved on the state level and "everyone attending the NYSAR meetings knew who Bill Curtin was," he said.

Outgoing president Bobbie Kagle had the honor of presenting the BNAR's Community of Excellence Award, which recognizes the efforts of those dedicated to improving the quality of life in Western New York, to Kathy Hochul, Erie County clerk. BNAR said that, despite tight budgets, Hochul improved the image and service of the auto bureau, initiated "Passports on the Move" and modernized and expedited services provided by her office.

Ten individuals were presented with the Realtors Emeritus Award, a national award given to members who have been Realtors for 40 continuous years. This elite group includes Louise Arnone, Margaret Hartman Czaplicki, James Farrell, E. Thomas Hollander, Mary Ann Kustich, Richard Randazzo, Marlene Slade, Joan Stovroff, William Wedgwood and Merle Whitehead Jr.

Recognizing outstanding contributions to the real estate industry and to the BNAR, the prestigious Buffalo Award was given to Leonardi. His most notable accomplishments have been improving member service to all areas of Western New York, offering education in regional locations, as well as the creation of the New York State Alliance of MLS's and the advancement of the Real Estate Information Services LLC Multiple Listing System. He was part of the acquisition of the Niagara Frontier and Genesee Valley Realtors Associations, creating satellite offices along with the Cattaraugus Association joining the MLS. He also was the initiator of the 2FindYourHome publication and website.

Louis Vinci was named as the Realtors-Associate of the Year Award. Vinci served on almost every BNAR committee and continues to serve while still being able to devote his time to the community and the real estate industry.

The Realtors of the Year Award was given to Philip Aquila, past president of BNAR and currently serving as president of the REIS MLS. Under his leadership, a tri-board Multiple Listing System agreement with Buffalo, Rochester and Syracuse, known as the NYS Alliance of MLS, was born. His most notable accomplishment as president of the BNAR was initiating electronic proxy voting and member polling.

The BNAR is a trade organization with 2,800 real estate professionals whose mission is to assist members to become successful and profitable; and to promote professionalism and real property rights.

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