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AS NAR PRESIDENT, CHEE AIMS TO MAKE ASSOCIATION PROGRESSIVE

 WASHINGTON, Jan. 5 /PRNewswire/ -- William S. Chee, 1993 president of the National Association of Realtors, will work to make the association more progressive and more responsive to changes in the marketplace, according to an article in Real Estate Today, published by NAR.
 "Bill Chee: A Quiet General," which appears in the January/February issue, describes Chee as a decisive, efficient real estate practitioner with a clear vision of how to improve NAR's service to members and boost the association's public image. Chee, 47, is chief executive officer of Locations, Inc., in Honolulu. The company is Hawaii's top real estate company in terms of sales volume and number of transactions.
 Chee assumed the NAR presidency in November 1992, during the association's annual convention in Honolulu. Although Chee modestly calls his goals "unexciting," he is aiming to "reshape the organization ... to create a culture in which the association can address changes swiftly and intelligently," according to the article.
 Chee mentions buyer brokerage as an example of a change -- a different type of marketing technique -- that merits full support by NAR. "It should be part of our organization's culture to love change so that it doesn't resist such things as buyer brokerage," Chee says. "We have to recognize that we're ruled by members, and members must recognize that they're ruled by consumers. The organization's culture and attitude should be that if that's what consumers want, that's what we should give them."
 Another change Chee feels is necessary is an improvement in the enforcement of NAR's Code of Ethics. He believes that a national appeals process should be created, as an option for people who are dissatisfied with the way their complaint has been handled by the local board of Realtors. This system would allow them to pursue their complaints through the state association, and if necessary, at the national level.
 "If you put an appeals process at the state and national levels, people who sit on hearing panels (provided by local boards) would know that their findings would be tested at higher levels, and that would cause them to make better decisions," Chee says.
 Instituting such a process would help improve the public image of Realtors, he contends.
 Chee, who is of Chinese descent, is the first Asian American to become president of NAR. He would like to see an increase in the association's minority members -- currently they constitute about 5 percent of the total membership. He acknowledges that progress has been made in that area, but feels NAR still has a long way to go. "It takes real persistence. The association has to learn how to reach out and maintain a consistent attitude (on welcoming minorities) all the way through," he says.
 His goal to foster progressiveness within NAR will be accomplished using the same approach he uses to run Locations -- doing what is logical. Chee admits that he has a knack for turning seemingly complex situations into simple ones. "(At Locations), we try to concentrate only on things that matter. All the other rules we get rid of," he says. "The main thing is how you service the client and treat one another."
 He calls himself the "keeper of corporate philosophy" for Locations. "It's my job to first position the company and make sure everybody effectively works toward a common goal. Second, I make sure that the company is run with a certain value system and that we're consistent about that value system." Partnerships in Locations are awarded on the basis of client service and contributions to the company, in addition to sales volume.
 Shortly after he established the company at age 23, Chee set up a research department within Locations. He reasoned that keeping statistics on real estate sales in Hawaii would vastly improve the company's chances for success. Now, Location's data bank has vastly expanded to become the major source of real estate information for consumers and industry professionals such as developers and mortgage lenders, in addition to real estate practitioners.
 Chee is described as a "business genius" by colleague Bruce Yanagihara, a sales manager and partner at Locations. "He has an uncanny way of opening his mind, and he tries to instill in himself and other people the idea of being limitless in your thinking, to try new things," Yanagihara says.
 Chee is intrigued by opportunity. "I think everything is possible, that I can change anything," he says.
 The National Association of Realtors, "The Voice for Real Estate," is the nation's largest trade association, representing nearly 750,000 members involved in all aspects of the real estate industry.
 -0- 1/5/93
 /CONTACT: Trisha Morris, 202-383-7560, Iverson Moore, 202-383-1290, or Liz Duncan, 202-383-1043, all of the National Association of Realtors/


CO: National Association of Realtors ST: District of Columbia IN: SU:

TW -- DC001 -- 1641 01/05/93 10:33 EST
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Date:Jan 5, 1993
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