During Saturday’s opening session, one of the most visually striking moments was the parade of flags, brought on stage by representatives of each of the dozens of countries throughout the world with which the National Association of REALTORS® maintains some formal alliance with counterpart real estate organizations. Our industry is an increasingly global one, as are the NAR conventions themselves, where opportunities abound to learn from and network with folks from nearly every corner of the globe.
Yesterday’s parade of flags came to a poignant pause when the announcer, who was recognizing each country in alphabetical order, got to France. With its capital city ravaged by terrorists during the NAR convention, the wounds on that country and its people are fresh. The crowd of more than 5,000 REALTORS® who were packed into the session instantly sprang to its feet and engaged in sustained applause. The spontaneous display demonstrated that a trade organization of more than one million members is, at its core, a family that supports its members in pain.
The French representative somehow managed to keep his composure while time stood still for him on center stage. The NAR leadership team then lined up to embrace him one by one, greeting him with the customary two-cheek kiss, followed by distinctly American bear hugs.
REALTORS® stand with our friends from France, and their country remains in our thoughts and prayers during a difficult time.