Home » Bluegrass group honors Realtor of Year, Good Neighbor, President’s Awards

Bluegrass group honors Realtor of Year, Good Neighbor, President’s Awards

Rusty Underwood

LEXINGTON, Ky. — Bluegrass Realtors presented its highest awards for 2023 at the recent Installation Luncheon and Member Recognition Meeting – Realtor of the Year and Good Neighbor – honoring outstanding members within the Association. Additionally, two individuals were recognized with the President’s Award.

Rusty Underwood was named the 2023 Realtor of the Year, the highest recognition the association can bestow on a Realtor member based on their association activity, community activity, and business activity. A Realtor® since 2012, Underwood is the CEO/owner of Christie’s International Real Estate Bluegrass. Underwood has served the Association in many leadership positions including president in 2022, treasurer in 2020, and numerous Association committee roles over the past decade. He has also served the state and national associations as a delegate to Kentucky Realtors (KYR) and a director for the National Association of Realtors (NAR).

John Groft

He is a champion of the Realtor Community Housing Foundation (RCHF) serving as president for several years. Additionally, Underwood is a past recipient of the NAR 30 under 30 class, a national honor recognizing rising stars in the industry, and was given the Good Neighbor Award by Bluegrass Realtors in 2015 and by KYR in 2016. He is currently serving as the Imagine MLS chair and is a member of the Top Producers Club.

The Good Neighbor Award was presented to John Groft, an agent with RE/MAX Creative Realty and member of Bluegrass Realtors for over 20 years.

Groft has shown his true character through his volunteer role with the Children’s Miracle Network, specifically at Kentucky Children’s Hospital. The Children’s Miracle Network provides critical life-saving treatments and healthcare services, innovation research, financial assistance for children and their families. For over 17 years, Groft has sponsored and volunteered for the annual Halloween party by turning the event into an evening of giving by sharing gifts, radiant smiles, and costumes with the patients and families.

Paula Elder

Additionally, he supports the organization through band-aid drives, volunteer opportunities and fundraising events. He is also heavily involved in his neighborhood by investing time planning events and sponsoring activities that cultivate community and a sense of belonging for his fellow neighbors.

For the Association, Groft has served in numerous leadership roles over the past two decades including president in 2018, numerous committees including technology, executive and finance, and was re-elected to the board of directors in 2024.

Shelly Safran

The President’s Award, an honor bestowed by the Association’s president, was given to Paula Elder, an agent with The Brokerage, and Shelly Saffran, Vice President of Operations and Agent Success for the Central Kentucky offices of Coldwell Banker McMahan, for their dedicated service to Bluegrass Realtors and the industry over the past year.

As the region’s leading advocate for homeownership, Bluegrass Realtors understands the value and joy of owning a home. The Association represents more than 4,000 Realtors located in 30 counties: Anderson, Bath, Bell, Bourbon, Clark, Clay, Elliott, Estill, Fayette, Franklin, Harrison, Jackson, Jessamine, Knox, Laurel, Lee, Madison, McCreary, Menifee, Montgomery, Nicholas, Owsley, Powell, Pulaski, Rowan, Russell, Scott, Wayne, Whitley and Woodford counties. Visit www.bluegrassrealtors.com for up to the minute real estate listings and buying and selling resources.

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