Chapter News

June 2020 Letter from the President

Hello GMC Members!

June is here and summer is upon us.  These months of 2020 will be very different from summers past.  Whatever your plans are, please take some time for yourself.  Our industry professionals have taken on more stress than anyone should bear, and it takes a toll. I have seen it firsthand and am keenly aware that so many are under pressure; rightfully so.   The best way to take care of yourself is to take the extra time to relax.   My wish for you this summer is to find that time for you.  Take the few minutes to breathe, exercise, get some sun, fresh air and laugh.  It truly is the best medicine.

Onto GMC business, I want to share a few important updates:

Quarterly Meeting Recap – On June 4th, we had an AMAZING virtual June Quarterly Meeting thanks to our Education Committee lead by Beck Svientek and Joe Wilush. Thank you team for your leadership and vision to make this happen.   We had over 400 people register and over 200 attend live for our industry panel discussion, “Doing Business in a COVID-19 World”  led by PCMA’s own Vice President Of Knowledge & Experience Design, Tonya Almond.   The Education Committee’s June Content Curator, Bonnie Stetz worked with Tonya to create an invigorating conversation with an esteemed panel of experts including:

  • Lupita Cardiel: Air Canada
  • Barbara Dunn: Barnes & Thornburg
  • David Whitaker: Choose Chicago
  • Chuck Grouzard: GES
  • Frank Passanante: Hilton Worldwide
  • Heidi Henning: National Association of REALTORS®

Each panelist brought their own insights on recovery for our industry.  Lupita, Frank, David and Chuck shared how their particular sector of our business is positioning for recovery.   I am inspired by the innovation and collaboration by all our suppliers to make meetings happen.  Thank you for all you are doing to help our industry recover and come out even stronger than before.

Heidi shared the National Association of Realtors incredible story of pivoting to virtual and making it all happen so quickly and efficiently.   Heidi, you and your team are inspiring to us all.

Barbara, you are the voice of reason for our industry and we can not thank you enough for sharing your insights.

Board of Directors Meeting Recap – Prior to the Quarterly Meeting, the GMC Board of Directors assembled virtually to conduct our Board Meeting.  Many good things are ahead for GMC as we are weathering this COVID-19 storm at a very methodical and measured pace. Thank you to all the Board members for your leadership and dedication to GMC.  This year we have done things a lot differently.  Our Board now meets monthly vs quarterly and in my opinion, has allowed the Board to develop strong working relationships together.  This has allowed us to stay on task remaining very focused as we weather this storm.   Also new this year, we conduct monthly meetings with all Committee Chairs to foster cross-committee communication.  I believe this has developed a fabulous leadership team for each committee.  The point of all this change is to provide engaging, rewarding and meaningful volunteer opportunities while producing quality experiences for our members.   I have seen our team grow and learn in the hardest of times and could not be prouder of all the GMC Leadership.  THANK YOU!   We still have so much work to do and believe that GMC is positioned well with Molly Witges as your 2021 President.  Molly brings so many great ideas to keep us growing and evolving into the future with a very robust plan for 2021.  Keep your eyes open for more to come on our future.

Future Events – Mark your calendars for our upcoming events both virtual and live:

  • Weekly Happy Hours – Friday’s @ 4pm (virtual)
  • June 18 (Noon – 1pm) – Lunch n’ Learn (virtual)
  • September 10 (2-4pm) – Quarterly Meeting (virtual)
  • September 24 (Noon- 1pm) – Lunch ‘n Learn (virtual)
  • November 5 – Signature Event (live as of 6/11/20)
  • November 19 – Quarterly Meeting (live as of 6/11/20)
  • December 15 – Holiday Mixer (live as of 6/11/20)

Check out GMC’s website for registration details.

We ❤ GMC Fundraising Campaign – Like many other organizations during this COVID crisis, GMC has lost many annual sponsors and our live events have gone virtual until November.  This has taken a financial toll.   In response to this situation, we launched our biggest on-line fundraiser ever to support our beloved GMC Chapter.  Our goal is to raise money to support GMC’s bottom line, so we do not dip into our reserves in a down market.  We want to continue the quality education and networking opportunities we have all grown to love and need for our professional careers. The hope is that with over 1400 members’ generosity we will guarantee GMC’s financial stability allowing your Chapter to continue everything we do and more.  When you donate, you have the chance to win some amazing prices that have been donated by our membership.  Thank you to all that have donated.   Your commitment to GMC is truly remarkable.   Check out the platform here.  The campaign ends on June 19th so don’t miss your opportunity to participate.

GMC Diversity and Inclusion Taskforce  – Last and most importantly,  I want everyone to know that GMC is listening to what is going on in our world.  What has taken place over that last 2 weeks in our country is surrounded by so many emotions for all.  GMC is committed to making significant change in our community and the world for all to feel valued and have a voice.  What we have seen since the deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor has brought forth loud and clear that we need to foster a more inclusive environment everywhere, including within GMC.  We have talked about this at the leadership level for some months now and these events underscore the need for quick action.    We want to bring acknowledgement, awareness, reform and an end to systemic racism, violence, law enforcement brutality and killings against black and brown people. GMC stands with and supports Black Lives Matter and its efforts to bring change, justice, and equality here in the United States and globally.

I am pleased to share with you that we have established a GMC Diversity and Inclusion Task Force, chaired by Yolanda Simmons.  Our Task Force will work with PCMA’s Ascent ( team to explore how we do this right and make a difference.   If you would like to get involved, please let me know and I will connect you with our Task Force.   You can reach me at

Thank you for your time in GMC.   We value you and if there is anything we can do to help you in this very trying time please let us know.  We are here for you!  I wish you a joyful day filled with happiness and kindness.

Be Well,

Rachael Riggs

2020 GMC Chapter President

Jacky ListonJune 2020 Letter from the President