This week, New Jersey Realtors® recognized three dedicated volunteers with 2020 Good Neighbor Awards at the New Jersey Realtors® Virtual Conference during its annual awards ceremony.
“The Good Neighbor Awards celebrate Realtors®’ dedication to bettering their communities,” said 2021 NJ Realtors® President Jeff Jones. “This year’s winners deserve an extra round of applause for continuing their efforts during times of uncertainty. They saw community members in need and jumped at the opportunity to help.”
The award recognizes Realtors® who have made an extraordinary commitment to community service on the local, national and/or global level. Candidates are judged based on their contribution, the impact of their work, and their leadership skills. Winners receive a grant of $2,500 for first place, $1,500 for second place, and $1,000 for third place for a charity organization in their name.
First Place: Jeanette Schlapfer
Schlapfer is a Realtor® with Crossroads Realty in Toms River. In response to community members suffering from food insecurity due to COVID-19, the Toms River Police EMS Local 4846 started a food distribution program to fulfill the community’s needs. Schlapfer joined the efforts and has been volunteering over six hours a week, distributing food and soliciting and securing donations of produce and non-perishables. She also shares the work of the organization through Facebook live. Her social media presence has helped get other organizations involved and grow awareness of food insecurity in the community.
Second Place: Christopher Monihan
Christopher was born and raised in Ocean County and is a Realtor® with Ocean City’s longest family-owned and operated real estate firm, Monihan Realty. During the pandemic, Monihan and his neighbors started a healthcare heroes lawn sign fundraiser in support of Shore Medical Center, who were in need of donations to purchase personal protective equipment. The lawn signs feature artwork from his daughter and symbolize appreciation for essential workers. Monihan paid out of pocket for the production of the signs and all donations went directly to the hospital. The project has raised close to $15,000.
Third Place: Glen Thomas
Glen is a Realtor® with Keller Williams Elite in Metuchen. During a visit to the Philippines, he witnessed first-hand how schools struggle with having inadequate school supplies and educational materials for the students. His experience inspired him to co-found Develop Philippines, Inc., a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that collects and ships books and school supplies to schools and libraries in the Philippines.