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For those of you that read my blog regularly, let me first say, thank you. The overwhelming comments I get from my blog are very positive and supportive. However, some of them make me feel like I have to periodically clarify what I do. As the CEO of NAHREP, I lead the largest Latino business organization in the country. I love my job and if I do it well, the business environment required to advance Latino homeownership in America will get stronger each year. That’s my job…to protect and improve the business environment…Now, let’s dig into this a bit. At NAHREP, we accomplish this by 1) Educating and empowering the real estate professionals that serve Hispanic homebuyers 2) Advocating for public policy that supports our mission, 3) Facilitating relationships between industry stakeholders to improve collaboration and best business practices, and 4) Disseminating data and information that builds an accurate narrative about the Latinos in America. Before I explain this more, let me also tell you what I am not. I am not a business or life coach like Tony Robbins, Dan Peña, or Mike Ferry, and my job is not to promote a political ideology other than those that align with issues that I believe advance our mission. This isn’t always easy. In this polarized political environment, literally any policy I support will be in conflict with half of the population – especially those that get their talking points from partisan media. Two weeks ago, I wrote about closing the Latino wealth gap where I advocated for teaching financial education in our public schools, and I got emails from people who thought that teaching financial literacy is the job of parents not public-school teachers. Well, okay…how well has that worked out so far? The week before that, I explained how immigration reform can suppress inflation and help our economy grow – using Ronald Reagan as an example…and of course, I got emails asking me to stop spreading a socialist agenda. Haha…I guess, to some people, even Ronald Reagan is a socialist. However, the most exasperating comments I get are from the “bootstraps people” who love to tell me how they were able to make it in business without any help at all, so the best thing NAHREP should do is tell our members to get up off their asses and get to work. None of this really bothers me, but it does show a lack of understanding about my job and the appropriate roles for people like me.
In my own household, my wife and I do our best to teach work ethic, grit, and the importance of overcoming adversity. We want our kids to be ready for the challenges in life and have a mindset that is grateful but never entitled. If you have never heard Dan Peña talk, you should. His sarcasm and delivery are entertaining and profound at the same time. I could never do what he does, but I think if more people had his mindset, they may not be the happiest people in the world, but they will, no doubt, be more successful. But here is the thing, and I think it’s pretty simple, if Latinos, as a rule, have more obstacles to overcome than other Americans, fewer of them will become successful and have a higher quality of life than those who on average have fewer or smaller obstacles to overcome. Plain and simple…Yes, there will be exceptions. There will be an occasional Jennifer Lopez, Sol Trujillo, or Emilio Estefan, but NAHREP shouldn’t base its policies and activities on the success of a few outliers. Tony Robbins isn’t held to the same standard as me. His content isn’t designed to advance a large public purpose, it’s designed to give a mental boost to the consumers of his books and seminars, and to make himself wealthy. If Robbins’ stated goal was instead to increase America’s overall prosperity, he may do some of the same things, but I’m confident he would spend more of his time focused on policies that enhance the economic playing field for the majority of Americans. For me, it’s all about advancing homeownership and prosperity for the Latino community. Last year at our national convention, we had Deepak Chopra and Gary Vaynerchuk as keynote speakers. As far as I am concerned these guys are better at mindset training than anyone out there and I’m pretty sure we were the first organization in our industry to have either of them at an event…BTW- I’d love to have Dan Peña one day. My job isn’t to do what they do, it’s to work on the macro, the big picture, to help build a more level playing field for Latinos and other underserved Americans. It’s a challenging job, but as I said above, I love what I do.
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In this episode of Govies, Plutes, and Gangsters, Gary Acosta gives Armando Tam the behind-the-scenes details on his historic interview with President Obama at NAHREP at L'ATTITUDE 2022.