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Celebrating 15 years of Women of Influence: Insights from 2023 honorees

The HousingWire award spotlight series highlights the individuals and organizations that have been recognized through our Editors’ Choice Awards. Nominations for HousingWire’s 2024 Women of Influence award are open now through May 31st, 2024. Click here to nominate someone.

For the past 15 years, the HousingWire Women of Influence award has celebrated the exceptional contributions of women leaders in the housing industry. This prestigious recognition honors those leaders who have made a significant impact on their organizations and the industry at large through their leadership, innovation and dedication.

In honor of the 2024 Women of Influence nomination period, we’re taking a look back at previous year’s winners. We reached out 2023 honorees to learn the most valuable lessons they’ve learned throughout their careers. Take a look below to see what they said.

Throughout my career, I’ve really seen that helping others isn’t just nice, it’s crucial. When you’re just zeroed in on your own stuff, it’s easy to lose touch with what’s happening around you. But when you help someone else up, you end up getting new perspectives and ideas that can push your own boundaries. It’s all about making sure we’re not climbing alone. And another lesson, though it might sound cliché, is that the biggest insights often come from making mistakes, particularly when taking chances. Each time I’ve stepped out of my comfort zone, whether things turned out well or not, I’ve gained invaluable skills. These experiences teach resilience, adaptability, and often point you towards your best next move.Ines Hegedus-Garcia, Executive Vice President at Avanti Way Realty

One of the most transformative lessons I’ve embraced is the art of becoming a ‘collector’ of remarkable people. I don’t just meet individuals; we forge deep connections, cherishing the relationships that form the very fabric of our shared journey.  When these remarkable individuals cross my path, I embrace and hold on to the unique value they bring. These aren’t just fleeting interactions but deep, enduring bonds that have stood the test of time—5, 10, even 25 years. They’re fundamental in every aspect, offering more than mere professional collaboration; they are the bedrock of personal growth, support, and the very essence of heartfelt connection. In times of adversity, the power of these connections becomes unmistakably clear. The voices of encouragement and truth from these cherished relationships are priceless, offering not just advice but profound, meaningful engagement that has deeply influenced my path. These are not just relationships; they are the pillars that support and enrich our lives continuously, essential for nurturing resilience and well-being. — Sarah Middleton, Chief Growth Officer at Movement Mortgage

My advice is to dedicate yourself to continuous learning. Whether through formal education, on-the-job-training, industry conferences, or self-study, staying informed is essential in navigating the ever-evolving landscape of the housing market.Odeta Kushi, VP, Deputy Chief Economist at First American Financial Corporation.

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