Top 10 Takeaways from the Counselors of Real Estate 2018 Annual Convention
Charleston, South Carolina
By: Robert J Pliska, CRE

The Counselors of Real Estate of the National Association of Realtors held their 2018 Annual Convention from October 21 to October 24, 2018 at the Francis Marion Hotel in Charleston, South Carolina. Speakers included Mayor of Charleston, John Tecklenburg; KC Conway, Director of Research & Corporate Engagement, Alabama Center for Real Estate; Robert Hitt III, Secretary of Commerce, South Carolina Department of Commerce;  Geoffrey Kasselman, Industrial Specialist, Managing Director, Newmark Knight Frank; Hugh Kelly, PhD, Fordham University; Joe Riley, Former Mayor of Charleston (1975-2016); Dan Battista, SVP, Lowe; and many others.

1. Charleston and South Carolina are thriving. They lead in international investment. They are a top exporter in the U.S.
2. Many major companies have transformed South Carolina – Boeing, BMW, Volvo, Michelin, Samsung, etc This is repositioning the state from textiles and tobacco which has declined.
3. Charleston is a #1 rated tourist city per Conde Nast. It has a unique success of tourism, hospitality, food and entertainment.
4. South Carolina has a team-first approach to economic development. It mobilizes the state’s many partners and allies, empowering them to assist in a variety of efforts – building and site certification, infrastructure improvement, international trade growth, supplier development, workforce educational development and statewide brand establishment.
5. Blockchain is transforming industries. It is now being used across dozens of different industries – from technology to healthcare to real estate. Blockchain is making various industries more modern and efficient.
6. Blockchain will be bigger than the internet. In commercial real estate, it will allow for fewer payment disputes, provide real time updates, share data bases, provide faster due diligence, reduce fraud, allow faster liquidation of assets and substantially decrease the process of recording and transferring title.
7. Joe Riley, the mayor of Charleston for 40 years, was successful via several approaches – providing a sense of pride for his city, continually striving for achieving excellence, adhering to core values and proving a vibrant downtown.
8. Boeing has had a huge impact for South Carolina. It is the number one exporter in the U.S. – a position it has held for over a decade. $19 billion is the total economic impact of aerospace. 100,000 jobs are supported by the aerospace industry in South Carolina.
9. Boeing is producing the 787 in Charleston. This is a $300 to $400 million airplane with high technology. There is a 7 year back log.
10. Welcome to the many new Counselors of Real Estate invitees! Congratulation to the 2019 Leadership Team – Julie Melander, Chair of the Board; Michel Couillard, First Vice Chair, Marilee Utter, Second Vice Chair; Mary Bujold, Liaison Vice Chair; Donald Guarino, Liaison Vice Chair; Casey Pipes, Liaison Vice Chair. Thank you and very honored for my election, Robert J. Pliska, to the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors.