REALTORS® arrive at Capitol Hill

© National Association of REALTORS®

2019 NAR Immediate Past President Elizabeth Mendenhall arrives at the Capitol Building with other REALTORS® from her state of Missouri to speak with their Congressional representatives Wednesday.

How a REALTOR® Touched a Congressman’s Heart

May 16, 2019

REALTORS® Legislative Meetings & Trade Expo

When Nykea Pippion McGriff, ABR, GRI, a broker with Dream Town Realty in Chicago, headed for Capitol Hill on Wednesday to speak with her congressional representatives about legislative issues most pressing for homeowners, the real estate industry, and the broader economy, her visit with Rep. Bobby Rush (D-Ill.) was more like a homecoming.

REALTORS® around the country this week are meeting with their senators and representatives in Washington, D.C., to share their stories, talk housing policy, and communicate the value they bring to their communities. Matt Difanis, immediate past president of Illinois REALTORS®, who joined McGriff and other Illinois members on their Hill visit, shared an anecdote on Facebook that reveals the powerful depth of the relationships between REALTORS® and federal lawmakers.

Illinois REALTOR® Nykea Pippion McGriff meets with Rep. Bobby Rush (D-Ill.) on Capitol Hill on Wednesday.

© Matt Difanis

Illinois REALTOR® Nykea Pippion McGriff meets with Rep. Bobby Rush (D-Ill.) Wednesday on Capitol Hill.

Since 2015, McGriff has been the federal political coordinator for Chicago’s 1st Congressional District, which Rush represents. But McGriff didn’t have an easy time at the start. “Nykea worked diligently to build a relationship virtually from scratch,” Difanis wrote on Facebook. “When her early contact efforts failed, she started visiting the district office regularly, eventually building friendships and trust among the staff, which eventually led to building an extraordinary relationship with the congressman.”

Difanis continued: “Nykea has built such a close relationship with Congressman Rush that he spoke about her son’s murder in 2017 on the House floor, which was broadcast on C-SPAN. He also appeared in person and spoke at the memorial service in Chicago in June 2017. His D.C.-based chief of staff flew to Chicago to volunteer for a Crime Stoppers neighborhood canvass in an effort to solve her son’s still-unsolved murder case.”