On a night honoring those who exhibit industry excellence, Illinois REALTOR® of the Year Michael D. Drews urged his REALTOR® colleagues to share their real estate stories with legislators during Capitol Conference on Tuesday. (Terry Farmer Photo above)

“Tomorrow is your opportunity to tell your story in the statehouse,” Drews told the audience at the 2019 REALTOR® of the Year Banquet Monday at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum in Springfield. “Tell how we fight for private property rights. And after that, be sure to use social media to tell consumers your story, too.”

Drews told the crowd that about 750 REALTORS® are expected for Capitol Conference, and that number would set a record for the largest turnout since REALTOR® Lobby Days began. The banquet honored Drews and 21 local REALTORS® of the Year representing their local associations around the state.

Drews, a broker associate with Charles B. Doss & Company in Aurora, has devoted his 40-year real estate career to improving the industry and his community. He has served at all levels of the REALTOR® organization, including leading the Illinois REALTORS® as its state president in 2016.

He has served in leadership with his local association, the Mainstreet Organization of REALTORS®, and currently represents Illinois, Indiana and Wisconsin as the National Association of REALTORS® Region 7 Vice President.

(l to r) Maurice Hampton, Zeke Morris, John Smaby and Michelle Mills Clement.

He is a longtime advocate for the highest industry standards in ethics and professional development. Drews also is a champion of the REALTOR® political advocacy program and was honored in with the state association’s Political Involvement Award in 2011.  He has worked to build connections with federal and state lawmakers as a Federal Political Coordinator and a State Legislative Contact.

Twenty-one local associations also celebrated their own REALTORS® of the Year:

  • Teresa Camarato of Property with TLC in Carbondale is the REALTOR® of the Year for the Egyptian Board of REALTORS®.
  • Bill Coduto of Baird & Warner in Fox River Grove represents the North Shore-Barrington Association of REALTORS®.
  • Christine Coleman of Coleman Land Company in St. Charles is the ROTY for the REALTOR® Association of the Fox Valley.
  • Jessica Devore of Green Acres Real Estate in Clinton represents the Bloomington-Normal Association of REALTORS®.
  • Jon Loquist of Ruhl & Ruhl REALTORS® in Moline is the REALTOR® of the Year for the Quad City Area REALTORS®.
  • Brad Marinelli of Dickerson & Nieman REALTORS® in Roscoe is REALTOR® of the Year for Rockford Area REALTORS®.
  • Keith McKeever of RE/MAX Preferred Choice in Bartonville is the ROTY for the Peoria Area Association of REALTORS®.
  • Cindy Nagle of The Real Estate Group in Springfield represents the Capital Area REALTORS.
  • Matt Persicketti of Oak Leaf Realty in Shorewood is the REALTOR® of the Year for the Three Rivers Association of REALTORS®.
  • Leanne Provost of Real Living Speckman Realty in Bourbonnais is the ROTY for the Kankakee-Iroquois-Ford Association of REALTORS®.
  • Elaine Rhodes of Coldwell Banker Brown REALTORS® in Godfrey is REALTOR® of the Year for the Greater Gateway Association.
  • Jose Rey of RE/MAX Unlimited Northwest in Crystal Lake represents the Heartland REALTOR® Organization.
  • Alison Rosenow of American Realty in Sycamore is the REALTOR® of the Year for the Hometown Association of REALTORS®.
  • Todd Salen of RE/MAX Choice in Champaign is the ROTY for Champaign County Association of REALTORS.
  • Christopher Schramko of Schramko Real Estate Corporation in Hindsdale represents the Northern Illinois Commercial Association of REALTORS®.
  • Matt Silver of Urban Real Estate in Chicago is the REALTOR® of the Year for the Chicago Association of REALTORS®.
  • Angela Stodden of United Country Heartland Real Estate in Galena represents the REALTOR® Association of Northwestern Illinois.
  • Catherine Terpstra of RE/MAX All Pro in Bloomingdale is REALTOR of the Year for the Mainstreet Organization of REALTORS®.
  • Carol Wlodarshak of Coldwell Banker Today’s REALTORS® in Mendota is the ROTY for the Illini Valley Association of REALTORS®.
  • Angie Zahn of Strano & Associates Real Estate in Trenton represents the REALTOR® Association of Southwestern Illinois.
  • Jonathan Zivojnovic of River Elm Properties in Elmwood Park is the ROTY for the Oak Park Area Association of REALTORS®.