Letter from the President


CREN Members and Guests,

This year, the CREN Board of Directors is working diligently to improve the organization’s ROI to members, guests, and even speakers. While our dues and event fees are already among the lowest of nearly any professional organization around town, we have the responsibility to provide both quality programming and the appropriate settings to turn event participation into meaningful results. Through our events we hear from speakers that inspire, motivate, and educate and we form and grow relationships that develop into valued and trusted business contacts. CREN is a familiar place where we share in each other’s successes and work together on our futures. We hope to thoughtfully grow the organization this year so that we have all the pieces necessary to, not only entertain or educate, but to be the stimulus of deal-making.

Here are some of the changes we’ve begun implementing:

  1. Logo Update – While the anacronym “CREN” remains prominent, we didn’t want the abbreviation to take precedence over the components. With great pride, we are the Commercial Real Estate Network.
  2. Website Update – Keep your contact info up-to-date, sign-up for luncheons, download presentations from past speakers, read articles, advertise your business.
  3. New Venues – We've relocated our Happy Hour venue to Benjy's On Washington and we will be relocating our Luncheon venue to The Briar Club. 
  4. Membership Recognition – CREN members are a diverse group of brokers, owners, investors, developers, analysts, property managers, bankers, lenders, insurers, engineers, architects, lawyers, and other service providers. One doesn’t need to go beyond our group to find a professional that is ready, willing, and able to assist in any aspect of commercial real real estate. It’s important that we highlight how our membership can work together.
  5. Partner Recoginition – A number of familiar faces remain committed to the development of our organization and it’s important that we recognize and celebrate these partnerships. We want to deliver a return to bankers like Fred Hawley of CommunityBank of Texas (our current Treasurer) or Bill Dampier of City Bank (our current Secretary); insurers like Mark Rafail of Rafail Insurance Group (our current Marketing Chair) or Scott Margraves of TDECU Insurance Agency (a CREN Happy Hour sponsor); SBA lender Bruce Hurta of MCCU; surveyor Joe Loverdi of South Texas Surveying; title insurer Rebecca Haass of Old Republic Title (with new company but familiar face); environmental engineering consultants Bryan Gay and Joe Hoelzen of ESE Partners; back-office support specialist Clint Brinkley of Your Business Solutions (created new website and logo); and then the terrific like-kind affiliations with Ginger Wheless of REDNews; Michael Butler and others of KW Commercial Texas Gulf, and Dawn Sabo of Sabo Accounting & Tax Services.

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12 May 2017


By Steven Stone
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