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Real Estate Academy of Leadership

Real Estate Academy of Leadership

What is REAL?

Founded in 1995 by the MIBOR REALTOR® Association, the Real Estate Academy of Leadership (REAL) is a proactive effort to identify individuals from the association's membership who have leadership interest and potential.

MIBOR's goal is to help prepare candidates to be successful leaders in the real estate profession and in the central Indiana community. REAL is a dynamic experience designed to expose participants to the principles of leadership as well as issues and trends in the community.

Goals and Objectives

As a participant in the Real Estate Academy of Leadership, you will be expected to attend all class sessions in order to obtain graduate status. The class will meet once per month for the majority of the day—please be aware that this is a considerable time commitment. At the end of this course, you will have a greater understanding of how REALTORS® impact the community in a leadership capacity. MIBOR REALTOR® Association is invested in many parts of the local economy, ranging from government affairs and regulations to crime and education.

As a participant in the program, you will learn tools for successful leadership in your community. At the end of the course, it will be your responsibility to collaborate with others in this program to establish recommendations to MIBOR’s Board of Directors on issues revolving around the topics we will discuss. It will be extremely important for you to take notes, ask questions and remain active and engaged throughout the course.

incoming 2022 REAL Class

Being accepted into REAL is an exciting achievement that opens the door to the next phase of your career as a professional, and as a leader.

Annette Anderson, Laura Booram, Cameron Buening, Nick Claghorn, Patrick Cline, Danielle Coleman, Kristin Dixon, Donald Harrington, Stephanie Henry, Katie Hintz, John Karamanski, Sarah Kimball, Philip Kirk, Robert Lather, Marcy Renken, Jahanah Strawther, Megan Sullivan, Cody Studebaker, Angela Oakes, Sarah Whitely

2021 - 2022 Class Schedule

REAL is a 10 month dedicated program. All applicants are expected to commit to the dates listed below upon application. 

August 18, 2021 - Learn Your Strengths & Skills

MEETING LOCATION: District Tap, 3720 E. 82nd St., Indianapolis, IN 46240 & Sahm Park, 6801 E 91st St. Indianapolis, IN 46250

DISCUSSION POINTS: Personality traits, teamwork, strengths and opportunities, leading through collaboration


September 23, 2021 - REALTOR® Leadership and Association Governance

MEETING LOCATION: MIBOR REALTOR® Association, 1912 N. Meridian St.Indianapolis, IN 46202

DISCUSSION POINTS: The structure of the Association, how different departments work and collaborate, understanding the Local, State and National structure, leadership positions and opportunities within MIBOR, IAR and NAR


October 20, 2021 - Economic and Community Development


DISCUSSION POINTS: Quality of life initiatives, local and regional economic development efforts in central Indiana, statewide demographic trends, leadership opportunities in this area


November 17, 2021 - Effective Communication as an Industry Leader

MEETING LOCATION: MIBOR REALTOR® Association, 1912 N. Meridian St.Indianapolis, IN 46202

DISCUSSION POINTS: Public speaking skills, learning how to navigate difficult topics, being a leadership ‘voice’ in the community, best social media practices


December 8, 2021 - government affairs


DISCUSSION POINTS: Past and current advocacy efforts, understanding governmental structure in Indiana, assessing the tax structure and learning about where revenue goes and why that impacts real estate


January 12, 2022 - Professionalism in our Industry

MEETING LOCATION: Skyline Club, One America Square, Floor 36 Indianapolis, IN 46282

DISCUSSION POINTS: Indiana licensing laws, professional standards within MIBOR, the impact of professionalism and unprofessionalism in our industry, understanding the grievance process, learning your role in promoting professionalism


February 9, 2022 - The Impact of Technology


DISCUSSION POINTS: New technology tools available, assessing new trends, how technology is shaping the community and the industry, being a leader through technology


March 9, 2022 - Diversity and Cultural Inclusion

MEETING LOCATION: Eiteljorg Museum, 500 W. Washington Street, Indianapolis, IN 46204

DISCUSSION POINTS: Issues of diversity and their impact on the community and industry, seeing real estate and the economy from the lens of various minorities, asking difficult questions about diversity or the lack thereof


April 6, 2022 - Putting it all Together: Strategic Planning for the Future

MEETING LOCATION: The Neidhammer, 2104 E. Washington St Indianapolis, Indiana 46201

DISCUSSION POINTS: Using all we’ve learned to plan out strategies for the Association to utilize, collaborate with groups to craft proposals to the Board of Directors



MEETING LOCATION: MIBOR REALTOR® Association, 1912 N. Meridian St.


may 4, 2022 - REAL GRADUATION celebration


Join us!

The Real Estate Academy of Leadership will provide you the tools to improve your leadership skills, create opportunities for yourself, make lasting relationships, all while understanding how things like economic development and community involvement effects what you do every day. You will spend each month mastering different topics such as: Quality of Life, Government, Economic Development, Media Relations, Technology, Diversity, Professionalism, and many more.


The 2021-2022 REAL Program application window has closed. If you have any questions you may contact Aisha Kishta at (317) 956-5258 |


The first "REAL" class graduated in 1996 and over 450 REALTOR® and Affiliate members have completed the program since its inception and became "Fellows of REAL".

Most recent graduates

Class of 2020

Jeff Achenbach, Angie Baker, Beau Benjamin, Elizabeth Cave, Michelle Hammes, Brad Harper, Tim Houterloot, Erin Hundley, Eric Johnson, Nicole Johnson, Robert Killmer, Andrea Lacy, Amanda Malone, Jill Martin, Larry Nutt, Chris Pagano, Megan Peyton, Jennifer Puterbaugh, Kristin Rafferty-Burdine, Drew Schroeder, Frances Williams

Class of 2019

Jaime Barb, Natalie Clayton, Michael Chappell, Jason Engle, Angela Garard, Traci Garontakos, Alex Hnatusko, Laurie McQueen, Penny Tracey, Courtney Kraft, Shannon Plumer, Rochelle Perkins, Jacqueline Flowers, Crystal White, Sara Guest, Dawn Barringer, Tyler Hankins, Morgan Lathery, Angela Turley, Teri Apple

Class of 2018

Shell Barger, Wendy Buckler, Teresa Conley, Mike Ernest, John Flatt, Desiree Harrison, Christie Haines Kuehl, Jackie Lovell, Katie Malott, Katie Mellen, Zachary Miller, Jordan Moody, Lynn Murray, Kellie Nierzwicki, Tracey Nix, Kristen Olsen, Lisa Orecchio, Alyce Penry, Kate Rossman, Christopher Sanders, Connor Simonson, Shelley Specchio, Ruth Tesky, Stephen Turchyn, Shelly Walters


Still not convinced? See what others have to say about the program!

“REAL made me fall in love with real estate all over again.”  — Lee Ann Balta, Carpenter REALTORS

“REAL was a wonderful experience that I will not soon forget. The learning opportunities this program provides, along with the connections I’ve made throughout the Real Estate Industry will serve me well in the years to come. Thank you for the opportunity to be part of such a special group - it is an honor to be a graduate and fellow of REAL and I thank you so much for this incredible experience.” — Dustin Sickinger, Keller Williams Indy Metro N

“The REAL program has provided me with a new understanding of industry issues and how they affect each of the players in the real estate field – agents, lenders, appraisers, etc. This has lead me to have a greater respect for all of these individuals, which has fostered healthier relationships and ultimately, more effective transactions. " — April Lewis, Chase Bank

 “REAL has been an amazing experience that, if given the opportunity, I would take full advantage of again! The class provided access to many leaders throughout the city, allowing us an opportunity to speak to them in a personal setting. We learned much about Indianapolis and the vast resources available. Finally, we made friendships with individuals in our industry that started as strangers. It’s a unique opportunity that I am fortunate to have participated in!” — Lindsay McAteer, Encore Sotheby's Realty