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Recognition System

The REALTOR of the Year Award began to be given out regularly in the 1980s. The first recipient of the award in 1960 was George Grover. George was best known for his efforts to promote education within the industry. The George W. T. Grover Awards of Excellence in Real Estate Studies were established to encourage students to pursue further real estate training at the University of Alberta, Faculty of Extension. In recognition of these contributions he was made a Life Member of the EREB.

Life memberships were awarded to the EREB members judged to have contributed the most to the advancement of organized real estate, who had sustained public confidence in and respect for real estate agents, or who had promoted good relations both within and outside the profession.

George was the first and only recipient of the award until 1981. The Public Affairs Committee suggested re-establishing it. The criteria for achieving the award have remained the same. In addition to those mentioned previously, Brian Macdonald, Taras Chmil, Al Dredge, and Les Philips are other REAL TORS whose efforts have earned them this award.

The 1995 REALTOR of the Year recipient was Alec Fedynak. Alec came to Edmonton in 1958 from the Coal Branch area of Alberta. Upon his arrival in Edmonton he obtained a job with Imperial Real Estate. Later he worked for Buxton Real Estate, Weber Brothers, and most recently, A. E. LePage. Between 1975 and 1980 he operated his own company in partnership with Jim Baker.

Alec has been an enthusiastic supporter of the Board. He has served as a director and various committees, the most current being the Political Action Committee. He has served as a governor of the Charitable Foundation and was elected to the office of president in 1995. He received a Life Membership in 1987.

The Board commemorated its own success when it celebrated its 60th anniversary in 1987. The celebrations included a banquet and ball, which featured the then-Deputy Prime Minister Don Mazankowski as guest speaker.

Another milestone celebrated by the Board was the burning of the mortgage for the new building. A laser courtesy of the Laser Institute of the University of Alberta was used to burn the mortgage certificate. The ceremony was held on September 11, 1990, in the auditorium as part of an open house that included tours of the building. Bob Buttar was president of the EREB at the time. Bob followed in his father's footsteps, who was president of the Board in 1962. Bob Buttar joined Haida Realty in 1978 and has remained with them ever since, contributing professional real estate services to the community of Leduc. He has received a Life Membership from the EREB.

This article is extracted from John Gilpin, Responsible Enterprise: A History of Edmonton Real Estate & the Edmonton Real Estate Board. (Edmonton: Edmonton Real Estate Board, 1997). The Heritage Community Foundation and the Alberta Real Estate Foundation would like to thank John Gilpin and the REALTORS® Association of Edmonton for permission to reproduce this material.

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