By Mark Priess
Editor’s note: The following is a report presented to the OSHBA spring board meeting from the various homebuilders associations across the state; this one from Mark Priess, Associate member from Tulsa
This year’s Greater Tulsa Home & Garden Show concluded with 500 exhibitor booths sold-out and more than 31,000 visitors (slightly down from 2015) attending the Show during its 4-day run on March 10-13. From first projections, the 2016 Show will be the most profitable in its history. It’s the first year in which $1 million in booth space was sold. What a money maker! Past chairs have already met and the Show’s Wrap-Up Party is scheduled on April 5.
Remodeled Tulsa Tour and Evening of Giving
The 2015 Remodeled Tulsa Tour featured 10 projects; eight single-family homes, one multi-family apartment building, and one commercial renovation, making it the largest number of projects featured on the Tour in many years.
A sold-out Evening of Giving fundraiser was held in the HBA’s Mike Fretz Event Center and featured a sit-down dinner that included silent and live auctions. Gross proceeds totaled $91,000 and net proceeds of $67,000 were presented to the Tour’s charitable beneficiary, the Lindsey House (a transitional living center for single mothers and their children). Replacement of every window in the Lindsey House’s 1920s apartment building (124 in total) resulted from the HBA’s 2014 and 2015 donations.
Honorable Mention: HBA Remodelers Council past presidents, Peter Grant and Ed Kaplan, were selected as NAHB Remodeler of the Month for May and November 2015, respectively.
Total Resource Campaign
Volunteers raised $427,000 in sponsorships/non-dues revenue through last year’s Total Resource Campaign. The 2015 TRC replaced the 2014 campaign as the 2nd highest fundraising effort in campaign history. The campaign funds the HBA’s 2016 programs, special events, and meetings.
New HBA Executive Officer
Following a national search the HBA Selection Committee recommended Jeffrey Smith as executive officer, succeeding Paul Kane. Hired in November 2015, the former CedarRock Homes owner resigned from the building industry to accept the position of HBA Executive Vice President/Chief Executive Officer. Jeff’s tenure as 2013 president and extensive service on numerous committees will serve him well in his career transition.
Military Appreciation Night
At the November 2015 General Membership Meeting, the HBA presented Military Appreciation Night honoring HBA members and their family members who are serving, or had served, in the United States Armed Forces. The guest of honor was John Kirkland, a WWI veteran, as well as the HBA’s oldest and longest-serving HBA member. Following Military Appreciation Night, John’s service in the Army Air Corps as a radio
operator and gunner was chronicled in a Tulsa World article in their WWII veteran series. Sadly, John passed away in March 2016, but with the knowledge and appreciation that Military Appreciation Night is slated as an annual HBA membership event.
Installation of 2016 HBA President, Brandon L. Jackson of Tara Custom Homes, was held on December 4, 2015 at the Hyatt Hotel in downtown Tulsa. 2016 Senior Officers are Brandon L. Jackson, Peter Grant of Grant Homes Remodel & Restoration, and Ryan Farabough of Farabough Homes. Brandon was privileged to have been installed as HBA President by his former employer and past NAHB president, Joe Robson.
Efforts by Jeff Smith to promote HBA member participation in OSHBA was overwhelmingly positive given the large number of designated directors attending the installation banquet of OSHBA President, Kurt Dinnes, on January 9 at the Skirvin Hotel in Oklahoma City. HBA members were also there to support David Blackburn installation as Vice President/Secretary and Dave Sanders to the Associates Council Board of Directors leadership ladder.
Ryal School Christmas Party
Ryal School children returned to the HBA for the 2015 annual Ryal School Christmas Party. This year, every child had an HBA member chaperone to assist them while shopping at WalMart. At the HBA students and teachers were treated to a pizza party with entertainment provided by The Great Bradini and each student received a gift from Santa Claus.
2015 year-end housing starts for the metropolitan Tulsa area were 2,789. February 2016 year-to-date starts total 455.
The HBA fell short of its 2015 new member goal of 200, but ended the year with 968 members and retention rates of 92.2% Builders, 85.1% Associates, 68.5% Affiliates. 2016 new member goal is 175 with total membership of 1,000.
Due to a staff resignation, Hali Mayfield was hired as HBA Director of Marketing and Public Relations. Hired in advance of the Home & Garden Show, Hali has demonstrated that she is a quick study and hard worker.
Bringing Housing Home
The NAHB Legislative Conference, Bringing Housing Home, was incorporated into the Show schedule since members and staff began working at the Show site on March 7. Congressmen Markwayne Mullin and Jim Bridenstine, along with Jed Cochran, Sen. Inhofe’s Field Representative, spoke at the dinner attended by Board members and Show volunteers.
Economic Forecast Seminar
On March 1, Dr. Robert Dietz, filled the vacancy left by the retirement of long-time NAHB Chief Economist, Dr. David Crowe. Rob was a featured guest at the annual Economic Forecast Seminar on March 25 at Forest Ridge.
Sales and Marketing Council
Reviving the HBA’s Sales and Marketing Council is being considered with input from former members and those with current interest. It is proposed that SMV be revived as an Associates Council committee before reestablishing as a full Council.
A memorial plaque was dedicated in Bill Rhees’ honor on April 12 at the HBA Board meeting.
HBA Charitable Foundation
Planning is underway for Appetite for Construction, the annual fundraising event for the HBS Charitable Foundation. It is scheduled on April 28 at Metro Appliances and More.
HBA Golf Tournament
The annual tournament is scheduled on May 6 at Forest Ridge Golf Club.
Parade of Homes
Over 150 homes are entered in the 2016 Parade scheduled June 18-26.
Remodeled Tulsa Tour Name Change
The RTT has changed its name to the Home Remodeling Showcase, but will remain true to its remodeling roots featuring projects by HBA Remodelers Council members and hosting a fundraiser in the fall with a portion of the proceeds benefitting a designated charitable beneficiary.