In photo (right to left): Bobby Jenkins, Laurie Loew, Ed Kargbo (owner Yellow Cab), and Don Kendrick (President Wells Fargo).
Butterflies in my stomach; a table full of Give Realty staff and supporters; a room full of 300 generous people at the Austin Gives Luncheon to celebrate the inaugural GeneroCity awards. I feel honored just to be in the same room, let alone for Give Realty be a finalist for the Small Business Award.
Roy Spence, cofounder of GSD&M/Idea City and founder of Royito’s, was the guest speaker. To hear him speak is always inspiring and the story of his journey entertaining. I’m always surprised at the similarities in the entrepreneurial stories of folks who have started a business and Roy’s tales about startup funding, business ideas and making a difference were all relative to the Give Realty journey.
As you can imagine, I often get asked about the Give Realty business model. There are many adjectives that can be used to describe it: smart; rewarding; transformational; difficult. Now that Give Realty has 4.5 years under its belt and has survived the ups and downs, I can honestly say it has been the bravest thing I have ever done. As the saying goes “hindsight is 20/20 vision”. I am not so sure I would have had the stamina and the courage to fund the model had I known how long it would take to gain traction.
We won! Give Realty’s name is called as the winner of the Small Business award. There is a round of cheers at the table. Ultimately this award belongs to Give Realty’s clients. Without you there would be no Give in Give Realty. I have said it before and I will say it again, our clients are our angel investors. You get it. You understand that allowing us to help you change your address allows us to continue giving in hopes of changing the world.
The rewards are endless. Give Realty has the best, kindest, most inspiring, giving and caring clients on the planet. The business model allows us to give to wonderful organizations that are doing amazing things in and for our community. Our clients and the nonprofit community are our biggest fans and best advocates along with all the friends who share our story.
Give Realty consists of two full time agents (Laurie and Victoria), one part time agent (Sarka) and a part time admin person (Kim). There are 9000+ agents who are members of the Austin Board of Realtors®. If I am being truthful, most days I feel like David. Thank you, Austin Gives, for helping Give Realty be Goliath.
Congratulations to Harden Health Care and BuildASign on their wins too!
Austin Gives™ is a community program to recognize and encourage business philanthropy in metropolitan Austin. There are currently over 130 business members who have committed to giving 1% or more of their pretax earnings to philanthropic efforts.