Posted on June 19, 2015 by Phil Rhees

Editor's note: This column will be published in the upcoming edition of Oklahoma Builder Magazine

I recently had the opportunity to go turkey hunting with my son, Corey, and long-time Tulsa HBA associate member Dub Jester out in Roger Mills County in western Oklahoma. Corey did end up bagging a turkey after much patience and a heckuva shot, but my pride for my son's hunting prowess is beside the point.

When you are turkey hunting, you have quite a bit of time to think about things, and my thoughts turned to Dub and our HBA associate members. As it is with many long-time members of our association, especially our associate members, so many of their contributions and achievements go unrecognized.

Phil Rhees
Phil Rhees

Sure, we honor some with awards, but for most of them, it's not about that. They have a true love for the people of our association and what we stand for. They spend countless hours donating their time at golf tournaments, home and garden shows, parades of homes, and the like, and they convince the companies they represent to sponsor events and contribute to this and that, and also make time to recruit new members.

For those of you who feel unappreciated for the work you do, I believe I speak for all builder members when I tell you how grateful we are for your support and friendship over the years. Our industry and our advocacy for residential construction would fail without your involvement in our many association issues and events.

So, in honor of our many associate and builder members who give so much more than what is asked of them, I am pleased and excited to announce that our OSHBA Board of Directors has voted to create the Oklahoma Housing Hall of Fame.

It is time that we recognize the past and present giants of the housing industry in Oklahoma, and I'm looking forward to getting the ball rolling.

A Board of Governors will eventually be created to administer the program and to select the inductees, and as we plan to honor our first class of Hall of Famers at our annual officer installation and banquet in January. Until then, the OSHBA Executive Committee and Executive Officer will handle the responsibilities until a Board of Governors can be appointed by next year's president and approved by the Board.

We expect to open up the nomination process sometime in June, and all members will be notified at that time. We will offer application forms on the OSHBA web site and also at the OSHBA office.

Any member of our state association can place a name into nomination, but it must be received no later than ten days prior to our Fall Board of Directors meeting later on this year.

Nominees may be persons (living or deceased) who have made significant and lasting contributions to Oklahoma housing and/or to the OSHBA. They can be builder OR associate members, elected or government officials, or industry-allied professionals -- basically anyone who has contributed or supported our industry in a substantial or unique way, even if they live out of state!

So get with your friends and colleagues and start talking about who you would like to nominate! I'm sure all of us know a few members that qualify as "no-brainers" for this honor, and I plan to nominate a few of them myself.

In the meantime, to Dub and all associate members working to create a better Homebuilders Association, once again thank you!

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