I hope you will join us for a celebration of diversity and fair housing on April 19 in the auditorium at SAR. This month’s newsletter theme is “Focus on Diversity.” Our past president, Doug Covill, left a legacy of cultural diversity. My focus is on integration, assimilation, and collaboration. The many differences we embody don’t separate us from one another. They are exciting! I may be the first Asian-American president of SAR, but I want you all to remember that we are one “REALTOR® family” working together, to better our Association and our clients. One way we focus on diversity is by working with different organizations. SAR has good working relationships with the Asian Real Estate Association of America (AREAA); the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals (NAHREP); the Realtists and Women’s Council of REALTORS® (WCR). We also support the Sacramento Asian Pacific Chamber of Commerce, the Sacramento Black Chamber of Commerce and the Sacramento Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. On April 19, many of these organizations, plus the Greater Sacramento Vietnamese Chamber of Commerce, the Rainbow Chamber of Commerce and the Slavic-American Chamber of Commerce will gather at SAR for our Multi-Chamber Mixer. April is Fair Housing Month, and I am very pleased that the Sacramento Human Rights/Fair Housing Commission is also partnering with us at the mixer to promote fair housing. REALTORS® who represent or reach out to diverse constituencies have created more opportunities for themselves and their firms, brought new perspectives to their associations and demonstrated the positive role that REALTORS® can play in communities. Today’s real estate markets are changing rapidly, and to prosper, REALTORS® continue to need new skills for handling transactions that involve buyers or sellers from many cultural backgrounds. Coming to the April 19 mixer will give you a chance to meet new people from diverse communities and support our Affiliates who are participating in the mixer. To emphasize the importance of developing new relationships across cultural lines, I would like to quote a Beverly Hills REALTOR®, Carmela Ma, who is a recognized authority on international real estate transactions. She has said, “A common misconception is that the antidote for prejudice is diversity. Pursued as an end in itself, diversity can at best only lessen the appearance of prejudice, while stoking the resentment of prejudiced people. The true antidote to prejudice is something that requires real patience and conviction. By advancing the cause of equality – special treatment for none and respect for all – the real estate profession will do much to overcome the reality, not just the appearance, of unfairness.” I look forward to seeing you at SAR on April 19!