UPSTAR Names Kim Ward as 2017 REALTOR® of the Year

December 19, 2017

The Upstate Alliance of REALTORS® (UPSTAR), Allen County’s oldest trade association representing 1,400 REALTORS in the Northeastern Indiana counties of Allen, Adams, Huntington, Jay, Wells and Whitley, has named Kim Ward, North Eastern Group Realty, as the 2017 REALTOR® of the Year.

The REALTOR® of the Year recipient exemplifies the highest level of professional conduct in serving the needs of the public, and displays exceptional commitment, service and dedication to the ideals of the association, fellow REALTORS® and the community over the course of the year. Ward has served many years on the UPSTAR Board of Directors and most recently as the 2017 President, where she focused on streamlining organizational structure. Additionally, Ward participated on a wide variety of UPSTAR committees and was engaged in the government affairs initiatives of the association.

“Kim Ward is a driven and determined leader,” said Phil Stinson, a member of the 2017 Service Awards Selection Committee. “Despite being the Managing Broker and Director of Marketing for her firm, she welcomed the opportunity to serve on the Board of Directors and various committees at UPSTAR. Kim believes in giving back to the industry in which you earn a living and exemplifying the old adage, ‘If you want something done, give it to a busy person.”

The award was presented on Dec. 6 during the UPSTAR General Membership Meeting and Holiday Luncheon at the Parkview Mirro Center. The event included the installation of the 2018 UPSTAR Board of Directors.

Additional awards presented at the meeting were:

  • Hall of Fame Award—Al Snyder, Coldwell Banker Roth Wehrly Graber. The Hall of Fame Award is one of the highest honors bestowed on a member. It is given for exceptional and outstanding service to the community and the real estate profession over a lifetime. Snyder’s career is characterized by 30 years of leadership and service. He was the 2008 REALTOR of the Year and has served multiple terms on the UPSTAR Board of Directors, including the office of President. Additionally, he served on the Indiana Association of REALTORS Board of Directors.
  • Affiliate of the Year—Rick Neff, Diamond Residential Mortgage, for exceptional service and dedication in support of association programs.
  • Outstanding Service Award—Jackie McBride, Perfect Pad Realty, for dedication and commitment in representing UPSTAR on the Indiana Regional MLS Board of Directors.
  • President’s Award—Jeff Vaughan, Coldwell Banker Roth Wehrly Graber. This award was given to Jeff Vaughan by the 2017 President Kim Ward for exemplifying servant leadership and being “invaluable to the success of my term as UPSTAR President.”

About the Upstate Alliance of REALTORS®
UPSTAR, established in 1913, is the oldest trade association in Allen County. The association is dedicated to serving the professional needs of over 1,600 REALTOR® and affiliate members and to promote and protect homeownership and private property rights. For more information about UPSTAR, visit, or call 260.426.4700.

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