Long Island Board of REALTORS® Honors Winter REALTORS® Spirit Award Recipients

December 20, 2012 - West Babylon, NY - The Long Island Board of REALTORS® Inc. (LIBOR) is pleased to announce the fifth and sixth recipients of this year’s REALTOR® Spirit Award, Laura Prince Vomvos of Meg Smith & Associates in Bay Shore and Franklin D. Butz of South Fork Realty in Hampton Bays, in recognition of their work with Tidings for Tweens and Teens and the Hampton Bays Lions Club respectively.
The REALTOR® Spirit Awards program has been revamped this year, to showcase all the good that REALTORS® are doing throughout the year. Six REALTORS® have been selected bimonthly to receive a $500 donation to the charity/organization of their choice. The Spirit Award recognizes REALTORS ®, individually, as an office or team, who have made a difference and have had a positive impact in their local community through their volunteer work, charitable efforts, youth related or other activities that demonstrate outstanding commitment to community service.

Laura Prince Vomvos, Associate Broker of Meg Smith and Associates Real Estate, has been tirelessly and admirably serving her local community for over fifteen years. She is also the proud mother of four children and three stepchildren. Laura feels that as a Realtor®, by profession your career enables you to welcome so many new families to our communities each year.  Along with this, you also have the ability to tour our schools, educate our community, and be of help to those in need.

This is the precise reason that getting involved in our local communities and helping those in need is so important to Laura, especially during the holidays. It is with this goal in mind that she created the Tidings for Teens and Tweens outreach program, four years ago.  Having seven children of her own, she felt that so often we donate to the little ones, either through the Toys for Tots program or other outreach programs, but beyond Fisher Price, we have our school aged children, our tweens and our teens, that are doing without this holiday season.  In a cooperate effort with her local neighboring school districts, YMCA, Family Service League and Churches, Tidings for Tweens and Teens has been a success in reaching out to families in need and providing holiday gifts for the older children that seem forgotten in our giving plans during the holidays.  Last year alone, they helped over 80 children.  This year in the wake of the storm, the need is even greater.   If you would like to donate to a gift for the holidays or for more information please call Laura at Meg Smith and Associates, 631-647-7013.

Franklin Butz became a licensed real estate salesperson in 1972 and a licensed real estate broker in 1974; he is the owner and principal broker of South Fork Realty. Franklin has been a dedicated member of the Hampton Bays Lions Club for 30 years, serving as President, Vice President, Treasurer and Secretary throughout the years.

Being an avid runner/jogger who has participated in the Long Island Half Marathon, Shelter Island 10K and many other running events, he saw how popular these events were becoming. With this knowledge he proposed and completely organized a fundraising event for the Hampton Bays Lions Club in 2011, called “Over the Bridge” (Ponquogue Bridge), a 10K Run and 5K Run/Walk along the Ocean and Shinnecock Bay. The first year of the event was a huge success with 400 participants, and earning over $20,000 for the HB Lion’s Club. The second year of the event far surpassed that with 550 participants, and over $35,000 earned.

With the funds raised in 2011, the Hampton Bays Lions Club was able to supply four seeing eye dogs through the Smithtown Guide Dog Foundation to people in need, as well as make additional donations to the Hampton Bays Library, Churches, Boy and Girl Scouts, Booster club, little league baseball, the Dominican Sisters and local scholarships. The Hampton Bays Lions Club, established in 1948 has continuously helped people in need in the Hampton Bays and East Quogue community.

Four additional exemplary REALTOR® Spirit Award recipients were chosen throughout 2012: Seth and Louise Pitlake for their work with the Katz Institute for Women's Health and  Katz Women's Hospital, Tony Smith for his work with the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Janis Palermo for her work with the Cooley’s Anemia Foundation and Elisa Eletto for her work with the Fay J. Lindner Center for Autism and Developmental Disabilities. Congratulations to all the recipients for their outstanding work and dedication to their community.

The REALTOR® Spirit Award program is sponsored by the Long Island Board of REALTORS® “We’re More Than REALTORS®…” initiative, which supports numerous programs and charitable community organizations.  The “We’re More Than REALTORS® campaign was created by the LIBOR Public Relations Committee.  The campaign raises the public’s awareness about REALTORS® and their philanthropic efforts within their communities.

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Press Release Contact:
Christina DeFalco Romano
Public Relations and Communication Programs Manager
(631) 661-4800 Ext. 358

The Long Island Board of REALTORS®, Inc. (also known as LIBOR) is a 27,000-member, not-for-profit trade association that serves real estate professionals throughout Nassau, Suffolk and Queens counties. Founded over 100 years ago, LIBOR is the fourth-largest local REALTOR® board in the United States.