IAR Multicultural Summit

Multicultural Summit 2014


2014 IAR Multicultural Summit

The Illinois Association of REALTORS® held a Multicultural Summit: The Latino Factor: Global Opportunity in Your Own Backyard, Thursday, Sept. 4, 2014, in Chicago. The conference included a high-powered roster of panels that examined the dynamics of the impact Latinos are having on the real estate business. 

Panel 1 - Challenges: How do Latinos Fare in the Real Estate Market?
Panel 2 - Opportunities: Local Latino Trends and Solutions for Success
Panel 3 - Opportunities: Global Success Can Be Closer Than You Think


Panel 1 - Challenges: How do Latinos Fare in the Real Estate Market?

Moderator: REALTOR® Sonia Anaya, a Federal Political Coordinator for U.S. Rep Luis Gutierrez and broker/owner of America Real Estate.
Focus: Panel focused on policy issues affecting the real estate industry and nuances and implications for Latinos. While most matters of policy affect the overall marketplace, are there specific points that hit the Latino marketplace with greater intensity?  What are some points to consider and areas of policy that you need to be aware of to better understand client needs.  
  • Mabél Guzmán, who sits on NAR's Real Estate Finance Committee, will speak on access to capital that provides a sustainable path to home or business ownership.

  • Joseph F. Nery, who is board secretary for the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals and is with Nery & Richardson LLC. He will discuss what is holding otherwise qualified individuals from purchasing real estate. 
  • Sylvia Puente, is executive director, Latino Policy Forum. The organization works on issues important to the Hispanic community including childhood education, housing accessibility and immigration reform. She's been in the role since 2009, and will present on education issues. 
  • Manuel Flores, acting secretary, Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation.
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Panel 2 - Opportunities: Local Latino Trends and Solutions for Success

Moderator: Loretta Alonzo, CRB, GRI, is a former IAR president and serves as vice chair of the NAR Housing Opportunity Committee. She is broker-owner of Century 21 Alonzo. 

Focus: This session gave perspective on what is happening “on the ground” in the Latino real estate markets.  Two “teams” which included a REALTOR® and a lender focused on both the Residential markets and the Commercial markets. Who’s buying, who’s selling, what are current latino trends in the marketplace. What do you need to know to succeed?


  • Joe Castillo, SFR, broker-owner of ERA Mi Casa and vice president of the Chicago chapter of the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals.

  • Marc Hernandez, vice president, First Merit Bank and president of NAHREP's Chicago chapter. He's on the board of the Illinois Mortgage Bankers Association

  • José Colón, CCIM, vice president, investment sales, Jameson Group. He is a former Chicago Association of REALTORS® board member and has served as chairman of the Chicago International Real Estate Council. 

  • Ed Ruiz is Wintrust Financial Corporation's senior vice president-retail branch management and is branch president for Wintrust's Logan Square office. 
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Panel 3 - Opportunities: Global Success Can Be Closer Than You Think

Moderator: Jim Kinney, ABR, CRB, CRS, GRI, is the 2014 president-elect of the Illinois Association of REALTORS® and will moderate the panel. He is vice president of luxury home sales for Baird & Warner in Chicago. He was 2004 Illinois REALTOR® of the Year. 

Focus: It is no secret that real estate has “gone global.”  Have you ever looked at yourself as someone who would be an international business expert.  If you have ever sold a home or commercial property to someone from a different country or culture, guess what? You are involved in international business! This panel will share how to best prepare yourself to be involved in a transaction in a culturally nuanced way to better serve your client.  Whether it is a transaction here in your backyard or one across the globe, you will hear the information through the lens of Latino culture.
  • Jeff Hornberger, RCE, director for global alliances, National Association of REALTORS®. Hornberger joined NAR in 1999 after working as an international sales manager, and now helps manage NAR's more than 80 global partnerships.
  • Michael Bauknecht, is president of the Chicago Chapter of FIABCI and is broker associate with Dreamtown Realty. He sits on the CAR Global Real Estate and Emerging Markets Forum.

  • Gerardo Contreras Gómez is founder of Century 21 Libra in Nuevo León, Mexico. He is international coordinator for North America for the Asociación Mexicana de Profesionales Inmobiliarios. 
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Breakout Text: 

Time to Start Thinking Globally

Think international buyers don't exist in your area? What you should know about this dynamic market, and how to learn more about its impact on your local area.

Thanks to our sponsors:

Speaker Sponsor
National Association of REALTORS®
This event made possible by NAR's REALTOR® Party Diversity Grant initiative

Diamond Sponsor
Chicago Association of REALTORS®

Business Diversity Partner
National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals

Platinum Sponsor
Mainstreet Organization of REALTORS®

Gold Sponsor
First Merit Corporation

Silver Sponsors

Bronze Sponsors