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Wednesday, February 18, 2015

A Call for Volunteers

Christine Guernsey, ISA CAPP
By Christine Guernsey, ISA CAPP

I have just reread President Cindy Charleston Rosenberg’s New Year’s Message. If you haven’t read it, click on the above link and prepare to be stunned by how far ISA has come in the last several years in terms of being an industry leader, guiding its members towards compliance with accreditations and industry qualifications, and helping its membership become (and stay) successful in an extremely competitive field. It is abundantly clear why ISA has become the premiere professional personal property appraisal organization of choice!

But just who is “ISA,” and how is it achieving so many amazing advancements for its members? “ISA” is not some omnipresent “wizard behind a curtain” or a large corporation complete with hundreds of individual staffers working 24/7 to make our members rich and successful. ISA is an organizational name. ISA is comprised of 800+ personal property appraisers, primarily throughout the United States and Canada. ISA is you. ISA is me. Together, we make ISA the organization that it is.

So how have all of these amazing accomplishments happened within the last few years? Because of the hundreds of volunteer hours that, currently, a small portion of ISA members have donated to the following projects and programs:
  • Creating new marketing concepts, which are benefiting all of our members.
  • Developing strategic partnerships with industry leading companies regarding the use of appraisal services, as well as who can refer business to our members.
  • Finding and nurturing sponsorship relationships and monies which fund educational programming for members.
  • Creating and teaching methodology and theory courses, pathways to accreditation courses, Requalification and USPAP courses, which members can take on site and online to keep their credentialing current, as required by The Appraisal Foundation. Our courses give members an edge on the competition that we all feel from the many other venues that provide “appraisal services”. Our courses are some of the best in the industry, and they help make our appraisers some of the best in the business.
  • Providing an annual conference every year, which extends an opportunity to members to learn, network, and expand their appraisal opportunities.
Can you imagine how much more ISA could accomplish if all 800+ of our members donated even 10 hours a year?

There are so many opportunities to get involved with ISA and help keep our organization strong, healthy and create better business opportunities for its members. We all have special skills of one kind or another, and we all have at least 10 hours a year that we can give back to an organization that is working hard for each and every member.

Here are just a few opportunities which have an immediate need:

Is increasing membership important to you?

Our Membership Committee needs current members from all across the United States and Canada to help spread the word about ISA. Do you know potential members, individuals thinking about getting into the appraisal business that you can approach with the message of our organization? As a current member, you are the perfect volunteer to reach out and give them the "insider's" view of the advantages of ISA membership. This is a committee worth joining, one that will not occupy a lot of your time but that gives you an additional avenue for networking with like-minded folks.

Some specific areas that need help are reaching out to young auction, art and antique professionals who may be interested in adding appraising to their skill sets. We also need volunteers to work on member satisfaction and benefits.  If you are interested in volunteering to increase membership and member satisfaction, contact Judith Martin directly at or call 630-665-5200.

Going to Assets 2015?

Mo Aubry, BOD Liaison to the Membership Committee, is looking for a few friendly faces to help meet and greet new members and first-timers to conference. Remember your first conference? Remember how nice it was to have someone reach out and make you feel welcome? We have so many new and interesting members from all kinds of venues and backgrounds joining us. Help “meet and greet,” and make some new valued colleagues in the process. Contact Mo Aubry at or call (941) 544-6806.

Know a lot about appraising or have product knowledge to share?

Karen Rabe is looking for mentors to help share their wealth of knowledge with new appraisers looking for advice in developing their appraisal skills. I have personally participated in this program and can say from experience that mentoring someone is extremely rewarding! I have made several new friendships with appraisers from different parts of the country. With all our new appraisers' varied backgrounds, the mentor ends up learning as many new valuable tricks as the appraiser being mentored. Contact Karen Rabe at

How are your marketing skills?

Our Marketing Committee could use some volunteers who are savvy with social media and have good writing skills. We need detail oriented volunteers who can help to prepare, write content, copy-edit and place ISA promotional material (ex. publicizing ISA’s LMS and educational webinars) on social media sites. We want to use as many online avenues as we can to get the word out about the conference, our sponsors, and why ISA is the premiere professional personal property appraisal organization of choice. If you know your way around the Internet, this committee is for you. Contact Todd Sigety at

Are you good at fundraising?

The Resource Development Committee can use a few good "money makers." We have sold out of our sponsorship opportunities for Assets 2015 (amazing!), but we need members with good ideas and relationship skills that can help us maintain our sponsor relationships on a year-long basis. Our sponsors are very important to us. In addition to helping cover the many costs of our annual conference, they also provide monies that help us create new educational opportunities for our members. They work with our members in providing referrals, product knowledge and appraisal related services. Want to join this team as it heads off in exciting new directions? Contact Fred Winer at or call 410-337-0085.

These are just a few of the volunteer opportunities in the immediate future. We would love to have you join the ranks of our valued volunteers. Your participation helps ISA continue to grow and provide valuable member benefits for all.

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