The contest to recognize Realtors who serve their communities selects 5 Realtors each year. In 2021, Christina Sauger was honored for her work feeding those in need.
CLEARWATER, Fla. – For 22 years, the National Association of Realtors®’ (NAR) Good Neighbor Awards has recognized Realtors® who make an extraordinary impact on their communities through volunteer work.
One of the five Realtors named this year for a top award hails from Florida: Christina Sauger with Charles Rutenberg Realty Inc. in Clearwater, Fla.
“Once again, we have a remarkable class of winners from across the nation,” says NAR President Charlie Oppler. “As these Realtors demonstrate every day, one individual can make a tremendous, positive impact on a community by volunteering. I am so proud to honor this year’s Good Neighbor Award winners for making a difference in so many lives.”
Sauger founded The Harbor Dish, a nonprofit organization that provides healthy meals and emotional support to anyone in her community, regardless of their ability to pay. The mobile program facilitates large-scale community dinners held on a pay-what-you-can model. It also, delivers hot meals to senior and homebound residents, foster children, domestic violence survivors and others in need.
A decade ago, Sauger owned a big house and opened her door to anyone for a cup of coffee, a sympathetic ear or a bed to sleep in. On Sundays, she invited friends and strangers to enjoy a home-cooked meal and a few hours of camaraderie. Leftovers were boxed up for sick neighbors.
“It wasn’t just about food; it was about making connections and building community with one another,” says Sauger, a longtime resident of Safety Harbor, Fla.
Inspired by the concept of nourishing body and soul, she created the nonprofit Harbor Dish in 2013 and has served as its unpaid executive director since then. Harbor Dish is a mobile operation with multipronged programming. Volunteers, including professional chefs, cook and deliver hundreds of healthful, microwavable meals to residential facilities for foster children and domestic violence survivors, homes of seniors and ESL classrooms. They also host large-scale outdoor dinners for the public and pop-up events throughout the city.
NAR’s 2021 Good Neighbor Award winners
- Bob Bell, Mile Hi Property, Denver, Colo., for Food for Thought Denver
- Sydney Ealy, Brooks & Davis Real Estate, Houston, Texas, for TWST4Girls
- Brent Gieseke, Exit Realty Professionals, Kansas City, Mo., for Agape Pamoja Inc.
- Kibe Lucas, KW The Kibe Lucas Team, Wasilla, Alaska, for The Children’s Place
- Christina Sauger, Charles Rutenberg Realty Inc., Clearwater, Fla., for The Harbor Dish
Each of NAR’s five winners – selected by a multistage, criteria-based judging process – will receive a $10,000 grant for their charity and be featured in the Fall 2021 issue of Realtor Magazine. They will also be presented with crystal trophies on Saturday, Nov. 13, during the 2021 Realtors Conference & Expo in San Diego.
In addition to the winners, five Realtors have been recognized as Good Neighbor Award honorable mentions and will each receive $2,500 grants:
- Dawn M. Adams, The Palmetto Real Estate Company, Aiken, S.C., for Abolish Slavery Coalition
- Sharon Chambers-Gordon, Windermere Professional Partners, Tacoma, Wash., for Raising Girls
- Chris Cockerham, F.C. Tucker/Bloomington Realtor, Bloomington, Ind., for New Hope for Families
- Denny and Linda Ellsworth-Moore, Coldwell Banker Hubbell BriarWood-Delta, Lansing, Mich., for Child and Family Charities
- Raymond Siddell, Keller Williams Legacy Group, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, for Together We Achieve
NAR also hosts an online-voting contest so Realtors can vote for their favorite Good Neighbor out of the 10 finalists. For 2021, the following received the most votes:
- Brent Gieseke, will receive an additional $2,500 bonus donation for Agape Pamoja
- Raymond Siddell, will receive an additional $1,250 for Together We Achieve
- Denny Moore & Linda Ellsworth-Moore, will receive an additional $1,250 for Child and Family Charities
NAR’s Good Neighbor Awards program is supported by primary sponsor realtor.com, along with Chase and the Center for Realtor Development.
© 2021 Florida Realtors®