A Gold Star for Laureen Young, CMCA, AMS - Get to Know Her!

Jul 23, 2015

Q&A Interview with: 
Laureen Young,  CMCA, AMS
Community ManagerAssocia Mid-Atlantic
Gold Star Committee, Chairperson

Q:     How long have you been involved with CAI and what other roles have you held other than the Chairperson of the Gold Star Committee?
A: I have been a member of CAI since I started in this business (17 years) and I have been on the Gold Star Committee for 5 years now.  This is my 2nd year as Chairperson.

Q:    As the Chairperson of the Gold Star Committee, what do you feel are some of the reasons that are important for Communities to seek Gold Star recognition?
A:    When homeowners see that their community has been selected to be a Gold Star Community, they know that their community is following the best practices for operating a community association.  They will know that their community is financially sound, with properly funded reserves.  This is also important for any resales in the community, because when a realtor or buyer sees that a community has a Gold Star designation, they know they are buying into a community that is operating properly with community governance practices (including rules enforcement, architectural control, and homeowner communication), financial management practices, and also that the community has special events or services that it provides to the residents.  The special events or services offered to the residents may be events such as holiday gatherings, safety seminars, or fundraisers for the local area, all of which provide a sense of community.  When a community has a Gold Star designation, it encourages the community to keep up their current practices, as the Gold Star has to be renewed every three years, and a new application has to be submitted for review before any renewal can take place.

Any community that currently has a Gold Star designation is listed on the CAI webpage (under the Education and Events tab) as well as in the CAI Community Assets magazine, so the community name is listed for all to see.  In addition, the certificates for new and renewing communities are given out twice a year, at the CAI Annual Conference and Expo in the spring and at the CAI Holiday Party in the winter.  This gives the communities a chance to be recognized in public and accept their certificates and Gold Stars in front of an audience, where the community can be proud of their achievement. 

If you are reading this and thinking your community should apply for a Gold Star designation, you are in luck, as there are two application periods a year.  The next application period is from August 1st to October 1st, and communities that are awarded the Gold Star during this period will be recognized at the CAI Holiday Party in the winter.  Visit www.cai-padelval.org/goldstar to download an application!

Q:     Being a Community Manager is very challenging.  What advice do you have with regards to working with your Board members and homeowners to make your job a little easier?
A:     Communication with the Board and homeowners seems to be one of the keys to helping everything run more smoothly.  When everyone is aware that an issue is being worked on, they don’t feel like they are being left in the dark.  It also helps to remember that sometimes people might be reacting in a way where it seems like they are attacking you, but really they are just upset about the issue at hand, so try I try not to take things too personally.  In addition, make sure that you listen to what is being said, and ask questions for clarification if needed! This is something that holds true in all professions.

Q:     Tell us a little about yourself.  Where did you grow up? What do you like to do in your spare time? (And yes of course tell us about your cats!)
A:     I grew up outside of Harrisburg and moved to this area after college.  I am a ‘cat mom’ to three cats and love all animals.  I enjoy traveling and wish I was able to travel more!  Day trips to New York City are something that we can do without too much expense and a lot of activities can be packed into one trip.  As much as I enjoy traveling, I also enjoy being able to relax and read a good book or watch a movie.

Q:     Tell us a little something that we would be surprised to know about you.
A:     Although I grew up outside of Harrisburg for most of my life, I was actually born in Georgia and also lived outside of Chicago for six years.

Q:     If you could be anything else besides a Community Manager, what would you be?
A:     Good question!  I think it would be interesting to work with animals, although not in a vet’s office, but in some other capacity.

Visit www.cai-padelval.org/goldstar to learn more about CAI's Gold Star Award and to download an application!

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