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Texas Realtors Announces 2023 Texas Real Estate Award Winners

February 19, 2024 10:09 AM EST

Realtors and local associations honored at 2024 Winter Meeting

AUSTIN, Texas, Feb. 19, 2024 /PRNewswire/ -- Texas Realtors celebrated exceptional members and local Realtors associations at this year's annual Texas Realtors Winter Meeting February 12 in Austin. The Texas Realtors Awards spotlight individuals and organizations that have demonstrated remarkable dedication to, excellence in and positive impact on the real estate industry. 

"The Texas Realtors Awards highlight the exemplary contributions made by professionals and associations to our industry," said Jef Conn, 2024 chairman of Texas Realtors. "This year's winners have set a remarkable standard, showcasing their commitment to advancing the real estate landscape and enriching our communities."

The 2023 Texas Realtor of the Year was awarded to Mario Arriaga of the Houston Association of Realtors. Arriaga started in real estate in 1974 and has made invaluable contributions to the industry and to the greater Houston community. He has been a driving force in real estate, serving on various advisory groups and committees, including the National Association of Realtors (NAR) Board of Directors and chair of the Texas Realtors Public Policy Oversight Committee.

Jean Shine, recipient of the 2023 Texas Realtors Good Neighbor Award, was honored for her exceptional volunteer work with the Central Texas State Veterans Cemetery, organizing volunteers to honor fallen soldiers with wreath placements. Her efforts for the past 17 years, including personally placing wreaths for every fallen soldier, led to a substantial increase in wreath placements from 386 when the program started to 14,900 in 2023.

Alisha Austin, recipient of the 2023 Educator of the Year Award, was lauded for her exceptional work, including authoring and teaching courses on real estate contracts and homeowner associations. She is also known as a staunch advocate for private property owner rights and serves on multiple Realtor association committees.

Additionally, three local associations were recognized for their exemplary educational programs:

  • MetroTex Association of Realtors in the innovation and marketing categories
  • Houston Association of Realtors in the legal category
  • Williamson County Association of Realtors in the series or short program category

Emily Chenevert of the Austin Board of Realtors was honored with the 2023 Tom D. Morton Award for her outstanding leadership and dedication as an association executive. With more than six years as the CEO of the Austin Board of Realtors, Chenevert has played a pivotal role in fostering a culture of strong leadership, supporting members at all levels and advancing her association as a trusted housing authority and one of the most innovative associations in the nation.

The Greater El Paso Association of Realtors was honored with the Mark Lehman Governmental Affairs Achievement Award for its outstanding performance in fundraising, grassroots efforts and other governmental affairs initiatives. Members recognized with the Strike Force Award for grassroots advocacy were:

  • Cindi Bulla, Amarillo
  • Leticia Gallegos, Arlington
  • Ashley Hambright, San Angelo
  • Scott Kesner, El Paso
  • Rick Snow, El Paso
  • Kay Spiva, Abilene

Additionally, Hambright was recognized as Grassroots Advocate of the Year, highlighting her dedication to grassroots programs within the real estate industry and her tireless work for property-tax fairness in Tom Green County.

Local associations that received the DEI Recognition Program Award promoting diversity and inclusivity in the real estate industry were:

  • Arlington Board of Realtors
  • Greater Fort Worth Association of Realtors
  • Greater McAllen Board of Realtors
  • MetroTex Association of Realtors
  • San Antonio Board of Realtors

The Young Professionals Network (YPN) honored six members under 40 with the Realtors to Watch award for stand-out leadership, community involvement and professional success:

  • Justus Carlile, Greater Lewisville
  • Joel Cooke, Permian Basin
  • Will Curtis, San Antonio
  • Thalina Garcia, Houston
  • Shelly Scanlin, Houston
  • Chris Tye, Collin County

About Texas REALTORS®
With more than 150,000 members, Texas REALTORS® is a professional membership organization that represents all aspects of real estate in Texas. We are the advocate for REALTORS® and private property rights in Texas.

CONTACT: David Gibbs, [email protected]

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SOURCE Texas Realtors



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