Dear Realtists,
This month, I am humbled that we are able to honor one of our legacy leaders as the Empire Board of Realtists, Inc. (EBR) celebrates its 80 th  anniversary. The ground our founders broke and the doors of equality they opened are sacred acts. Now, the time and the obligation to act is put in our hands to make substantive and lasting socioeconomic change. That torch passed on to us must continue to light the way as it guides us to  Build Black Wealth through Homeownership.
Accomplishing EBR’s goals takes many forms, but we have a single voice. Whether in your communities, states, regions or on the national level, we deliver our message of building Black wealth through the right to home ownership. We research. We advocate. We propose. We offer sound and just alternatives. We collaborate. We coalesce. We innovate. We initiate. We create larger communities of concern. We share our knowledge and expertise. We are ever vigilant and speak out against inequality wherever it exists. We use every means at our disposal to clear the path toward expanding the opportunity for more Black Americans to own homes and build wealth. 
In 2019, EBR along with our national organization are focused on changes needed in three areas that support Black homeownership and needed change in the nation’s housing finance system. These principles form the basis of our 2019 Policy Agenda. You can learn about the principles by visiting NAREB’s website and downloading the Federal Policy Agenda. You will be learning about them and our strategies at NAREB’s Mid-Winter Conference and at the 72 nd  Annual Convention. 
In closing, know that you are an integral and important member of the Realtist family, as well as to your own family. I look forward to working with you. And together, we chart a course to achieve  Democracy in Housing.

Leonte Benton