And the 2018 Volunteers of the Year are...
It's no secret that AAGO's dedicated and hard working volunteers help make our amazing events and world class educational opportunities possible. Each year we show appreciation for members who give back to the association at the annual Thanks for Giving Luncheon. This year's Thanks for Giving Luncheon will be held on November 16th and it isn't too late to secure your ticket. Click here to register now!
As we reflect on all that we are thankful for this season, please join us in thanking all of AAGO's volunteers and two very special individuals, AAGO's 2018 Volunteers of the Year:
Alex Mauro, InfoTycoon
Renae Gates, Dalcor Companies
You may be wondering- What does it take to become one of AAGO’s Volunteer of the Year? This week, we sat down with Alex and Renae to learn more about their AAGO story and why they are passionate about serving the association as a volunteer.
Amanda: How long have you been an active member of AAGO?
Alex: I've been an active member of AAGO for 14 years! Shortly after I started in the industry I knew I wanted to participate, but I kept waiting for things to slow down at work. I learned, as we all do, that never happens, and I started by attending breakfast meetings and volunteering on the Charity Committee.
Renae: I’ve been a member of AAGO for the last four years.
Amanda: Why do you enjoy being part of AAGO?
Alex: I really enjoy learning, so the education opportunities are key for me- not just the formal classes, but learning about industry trends and how clients do business. The best part though is the great group of people I get to network with while getting that education!
Renae: I enjoy the relationships that I am building, the committee's I am on and the gratification of making changes for our industry.
Amanda: What drives you to volunteer?
Alex: Through AAGO, I have learned so much that has made me a better employee for my company and a better advocate for my clients. I volunteer because I want to give back and help others succeed the way I have.
Renae: I enjoy helping whenever I can. When you see people happy that makes me happy.
Amanda: What is your favorite memory from volunteering?
Alex: My favorite memory is when I became the association photographer. It's great being able to combine your professional life with your hobby, but it also helped me come out of my shell and feel more comfortable approaching people at meetings. I also used to love spending time with the AAGO staff after each event viewing a slide show of the photos.
Renae: Teaching the Regional roundtable. I love to see how excited everyone gets and it brings all the companies together for the same goal, which is to be successful.
Amanda: Has your service as a volunteer impacted your career in a positive way and if so, how?
Alex: Absolutely! I started in the industry right out of college and knew nothing about the industry. After I earned my Certified Apartment Supplier Certificate I continued my education, each year taking courses that both elevate my industry knowledge and allow me to better serve my clients. This has helped me to become a better worker, leader, and now subject matter expert in my company. With each expert panel and state of the industry event, I bring back information to make my company more successful as a team.
Renae: Definitely in a positive way. I have more confidence and I enjoy doing it!
Amanda: What advice do you have for someone who has never volunteered before and is looking to get more involved?
Alex: A great start is to join a committee. There are so many options, from education, to legislative affairs, event planning, or helping local charities. You'll spend a few hours a month working with a great team to help ensure the success of a great organization.
Renae: Just to jump in! Pick something you are passionate about and just have fun.