May 30, 2014

Because the Grand Canyon Was Once a Stream...

The message for BUILD-PAC has been a consistent message, as well as persistent. As the blog title indicates, the Grand Canyon was once a stream. Through persistent and consistent flow of water it became one of the Seven Wonders of the world. Influencing members to contribute to BUILD-PAC is very similar; a constant reminding of value and importance gradually increases the size of PAC. While BUILD-PAC is not one of the other Six remaining Wonders, it does provide wonderful results for our industry.

Association Maximization is pleased to deliver another in our tremendous list of guest bloggers, Michael LeCorgne from Mandeville, Louisiana and Associate Vice-Chair of the BUILD-PAC Board of Trustees Executive Committee. Michael has been in the home building industry for over 30 years starting as a superintendent with one of the largest production home builders in the country, at the time, and has since covered many others areas of the industry throughout the Southeastern United States. He holds an insurance producer’s license for four states and is currently (14 years) a Risk Management Specialist with 2-10 Home Buyers Warranty.  Michael continually states how proud he is that 2-10 Home Buyers Warranty has encouraged and supported his continued involvement on the many HBA levels.
Michael holds the following NAHB designations: CGA, CSP, CGP, CAPS and is an approved instructor for several courses through NAHB Education. Michael also serves currently as the Vice Chair of the Associate Members Committee and serves as a member of both the Education Committee and the Membership Committee. Michael received BUILD-PAC’s Bill Polley Award as was inducted into NAHB’s Society of Honored Associates.

BUILD-PAC Message from Michael LeCorgne, Associate Vice Chair

Michael LeCorgne, CGA, CGP, CAPS
In the past, you have read or heard some of our past associate leaders’ thoughts and beliefs provided within Association Maxinization and all of these building industry professionals are truly vested in the continued recovery of OUR housing industry. Please note that I did say “OUR” housing industry as all members of the NAHB federation should be equally committed to doing all they can, both individually and as a group, to promote affordable housing, and housing initiatives. Associates have a saying, “If it affects a builder, it affects associates,” and that statement is true to its very core and is our associate mantra today and going forward.

In my opinion, advocacy is the very first place anyone should make a commitment. Although we don’t all have the same political beliefs, we should all do our part in making sure that housing issues and concerns stay at the forefront of those directing the decisions (legislators local, state and national) that have positive and negative impacts on our industry. The unfortunate part of politics is that often the “parties” choose not to work together to resolve issues that have an adverse effect on our industry. Even knowing this, we still have to work with the various parties and continue to massage egos, just to be able to hope that our issues might be heard.
I chose to participate in these efforts by being an advocate for BUILD-PAC fundraising efforts as well as increasing participation among the membership of NAHB. The message gets somewhat diluted when just a small fraction of membership participates in its delivery. With only 3% of membership participating with contributions, we tend to be a bit short on representation.  The associates’ contribution is just 1% of that 3% with only 724 associates making any financial contributions for our industry. Our 2 year goal for this cycle is just at $2.75 million dollars. Associates make up just over $250 thousand of that. My objective over the next year and a half will be to increase awareness and participation of associates on all levels. It is vital for all members to be vested in their livelihood! It is my goal to work with everyone to help more associates and builders to invest in our business, our success and our future. A minimal investment of only $20.00, which we can all afford, will go a long way, IF we can get all of our membership on board. A voice of 140,000 will be a much louder voice than that of 4,000!
Steady housing continues to be a stabilizing catalyst for the U.S. economy. By contributing to NAHB’s BUILD-PAC, I believe I am doing what all members of the federation should do to ensure that Housing remains a focal point for our legislators. I actively recruit BUILD-PAC participation from local, state, and national membership. I feel that not only do I “talk the talk”, but also “walk the walk”! I now ask for others to join walk. Let us all walk together for a brighter tomorrow in the housing industry.

When I first got involved on the different levels of various HBA’s and NAHB, I would sit in the back of the room and listen to what was being discussed. Every once in a while, I would speak up with a comment or question – for clarity and thought provoking discussion. Soon I was invited to sit “at the table” and thus started my involvement on a local basis. I thank those who mentored and encouraged me to step up and get involved on a national level, which I have done, with heart and soul. I encourage anyone interested in having their voices heard or those wanting to get more involved, to please reach out to myself, Kim Hefner, Associate Members Committee Chairman and Kathy Craven-Snodgrass, National Associate Chairman (NVP), or others that you may know that are involved for guidance and direction to taking the next step.
I have built many great relationships over the years and I look forward to building many more in the future. I hope to visiting with as many associates and builders as possible while in Washington, D.C. during our Spring Board meetings next week and share my thoughts about our future. As you may tell, I am passionate about the home building industry and its survival and I call on you to join me in this cause!

submitted by Michael Kurpiel, CGA, CGP

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