Each year, the Houston Association of REALTORS® (HAR) honors a member that has made an outstanding contribution to the community, primarily outside the scope of the real estate industry. The criteria for the John E. Wolf Community Service Award, which is named after 1938-39 HAR President John E. Wolf, include leadership and service in charitable organizations, service organizations and special service organizations. For 2017, Pamela Hughes, with Heritage Texas Vintage Park, was selected as the HAR member most deserving of this honor.

What was your first reaction when you learned that you were the 2017 honoree?

I was honored to know that I had been nominated, and totally humbled to receive the call that I had been chosen from what I am sure was a great field of nominees.

What does this honor mean to you?

While I don’t do the community work that I do expecting anything but personal satisfaction, this gives me a lift to continue, and maybe even kick it up a notch and do more. I hope to set an example to my fellow REALTORS® to get more involved in the communities from which they make their living. “To whom much is given much is expected.”

What do you find most gratifying about your work as a real estate professional?

We have an awesome responsibility, helping our clients achieve the dream of homeownership. It is deeply gratifying to be charged with assisting folks move from one “house” to their next “home.” Hard work, knowledge and integrity, leading to earning clients’ loyalty, is very gratifying. I recently assisted clients with their seventh transaction over 30 years.

What are some of the ways that you give back to the community – community service/volunteer work – the main reason for the honor?

I am a board member of the Pearl Fincher Museum of Fine arts, serving on the Annual Gala committee since its inception, recently serving as the “auctioneer” at their summer fundraiser; I have served for 10 years on my community Architectural Control Committee; I helped build three Habitat for Humanity homes; I am a founding committee member of The Centrum Performance Hall, which I continue to support financially; I have traveled to Nicaragua with Living Waters International to drill a well to provide fresh water for a small village; I sponsor Veteran’s Day at Yeager Elementary School; I served two terms on the Board of Northwest Assistance Ministries (NAM) and recently co-chaired Jeans & Jewels Luncheon and Style Show, raising money for neighbors in need; each month, as a National Memorial Lady, I serve at Houston National Cemetery comforting families as they bid farewell their beloved veterans [this group was instrumental in building the Fallen Warriors Memorial on Cutten Road to honor those Texas service men and women who gave their lives in Iraq and Afghanistan]; every year, I collect funds for Wreaths Across America to place Christmas wreaths on graves at Houston National Cemetery; I serve on the  Foundation Board of the Houston Northwest Chamber of Commerce, which concentrates on beautification of Cypress Creek Parkway and raises funds to provide scholarships for eligible high school students; I have worked with the Chamber on their “Grow Northwest” campaign to retain and develop business in the Great Northwest; I served as President of Great Northwest HAR Breakfast and currently serves as Inspiration Chair; I have hand-built and donated several dollhouses, and built and donated 40 Adirondack chairs to charity auctions; my husband and I have taught third grade Sunday school for over 40 years and we are both active in our church; we are currently raising our grandson, Peter, who is 14 years old and “keeps us young!”

How can others get involved with community service?

Look around you. Call a local school to see if you can help just by reading to children for an hour a day.  Call a local food pantry. There is always a job sorting food on the shelves. Consider Meals on Wheels delivery.  Homeless shelters. Veterans organizations.

Do you have any other thoughts or comments?

I live by President Ronald Reagan’s statement:  “We make a living by what we get…We make a life by what we give.”

Congratulations, Pamela! You are most deserving of HAR’s 2017 John E. Wolf Community Service Award!