My fellow Home Builders,

Happy Holidays or as we say at our house Hoppe Holidays.

If you missed the holiday party, you missed a good one. Eddie Brown and 402 rocked on. Julie and I and Staff and spouses pretty much were the last ones to leave. And we had fun.

This is my last president’s message; next month I pass the gavel to Lori Wellman. Thanks to Michaela, Jennie and Laure I’m turning over presidency of a strong association. Our finances are good. We made money and kept on budget in 2022 in spite of the headwinds for housing. We have good reserves to carry us into the new year. Our Home and Garden Show beat every expectation. As the year started and Covid lingered, we worried how it would go, and it went off without a hitch. The Car Show was new and was a success. It is on the repeat calendar. Family Night was another big success. However, we missed doing an in person Santa Cop – one of my favorite things as a young HBAL member. My hope for Lori is that we, all of us home builders, can get together more often in 2023.

Thanks again are truly in order for Michaela, Jennie and Laure. When we did the budget a year ago, we had no idea what the future would hold for associations as well for us homebuilders. Michaela committed to run the association with just the three staff members and we hardly missed a beat.

Rest in peace Duane Larson, past president of HBAL, at age 97. He was a builder and developer and an awful lot of east Lincolnites live in a Larson home. Duane shared in his autobiography, Story of My Life, “I think I developed the first lots in Lincoln after the war [WW II]. I went to the city Mayor. He was part time Mayor Marti. He had the city engineer there. I explained I wanted to develop a piece of ground on 70th Street into 12 lots. He asked the engineer what he thought, and he said you are the mayor. The mayor said, go ahead. That was the only city approval we needed. We put in sewerage, water and paving.” As homebuilders, Duane was our legacy along with some of the other greats like Strauss Brothers, Peterson Construction, et. al.

Times have changed. Next year I become HOMEPAC chairman for HBAL. With City Council and Mayor elections, it will be a busy job. We have a good council for housing, and we need to keep it that way. When I call, send HOMEPAC a check.

Thanks for the opportunity to be your President. I wish you all a happy new year. Let’s work 2023 toward a goal of every Lincolnite in a safe, secure, affordable home.