If you’ve ever met Gary Embler, you’ve been greeted by his smile. It’s warm and genuine. At NCHBA’s annual Installation Ceremony and Hall of Fame Awards in November, Embler’s smile was as wide and bright as ever.
Stepping to the podium inside a ballroom at the Carolina Hotel in Pinehurst, Embler grinned as he recognized the family, friends and colleagues who had helped him get to this point. He called out the executive officer Ann Crenella, whom he worked alongside during his three terms as president of the Cabarrus County BIA (a chapter of the Greater Charlotte HBA). He thanked his mentors, William Niblock and Marc Niblock, whom Embler credits for taking a chance on a young guy just out of college. And he gushed about his family in attendance, including his in-laws, brother, mom and dad, and his wife Kelli and their three daughters Kaelyn, Kelsie and Kristyn.
“And I want to thank all of you,” Embler said nodding to the crowded room. “You’re my extended family.”
The evening felt like a family affair, perhaps intentionally echoing Embler’s theme for 2017: “Welcome Home.” Throughout his career in the home building industry, Embler has never lost sight of the importance of home. It’s a place that grounds you and centers you, and, for every challenge you face, home is a place that gives you strength. Embler says these same characteristics define NCHBA.
“Through our association, members develop valuable relationships,” Embler said. “These relationships help us learn from one another, be there for one another and ultimately build better businesses together.”
Embler points to the past few years spent climbing out of the Great Recession as evidence of the importance of these relationships.
“There have been many times over the last couple of years when I think home builders just being able to get together and talk about what they’re doing in their markets, what’s working and what’s not, gauging what’s coming next –those moments have made all the difference in coming out of the Recession stronger,” Embler said.
And these conversations –building blocks of sorts –start at the grassroots. Embler says this is why it’s critically important to continue to push to increase the visibility of NCHBA senior officers and regional vice presidents at local HBA meetings and events. This is a goal, Embler says, that he will continue to push throughout the year. Hand in hand with this goal, Embler also wants to continue efforts to support EO’s with a focus on educating new EO’s.
Another overarching goal for the coming year is to continue to strengthen NCHBA advocacy and the association’s mission. Embler points to promoting increased financial support for BUILD-PAC, the Home Builders Education Fund, Inc. and the Advocacy Fund as critical ways to build the strength and leverage of NCHBA.
These goals are all tied to Embler’s theme, “Welcome Home.” It’s a theme that he describes with the following motto: “By Mission: We protect the dream of homeownership. By Association: We welcome and provide worth for all of our members. By Growth: We pursue and cultivate both new and former members.”
In addition to the goals related to his motto, Embler has several other initiatives he hopes to focus on this year: increasing support and advocacy for NCHBA’s Construction Careers and Education, deliberating creating a fresh brand and logo for NCHBA, seek commitment from all executive committee members to donate to