Excitement was in the air at the National Association of Home Builders’ (NAHB) annual International Building Show in Las Vegas last week. The show brought together more than 1,500 manufacturers, suppliers, and home building industry experts from around the world to network, showcase new products and services, learn new skills, and install new leadership.
Nowhere was the excitement higher than at the NAHB Professional Women in Building Awards where Betsy Sheppard, founder and president of Gilbert & Sheppard, a division of Immersion Active, was about to be sworn in as the National Board Chair for Professional Women in Building (PWB) for 2020-2021.
Betsy took the stage to thunderous applause. As a 35-year marketing veteran, she has worked tirelessly to increase the visibility of women in the industry. Based in the greater Atlanta area, Betsy launched Gilbert & Sheppard Group with Kerrie Gilbert to focus on marketing home builders and new home communities, with a special emphasis on the 55+ market and active adult communities. The company, which merged with Immersion Active in 2019, specializes in strategic planning, creative development, interactive e-marketing programs, business consulting, public relations and social media. Clients include large, medium, and small home builders, real estate developers, real estate brokers, senior living communities, and other companies focused on the housing industry.
Betsy has long advocated for women in the home building industry. She is a founding member and past Chair of PBW’s Atlanta chapter and has served as a Regional Trustee and Vice Chair of the national PWB Board of Directors. The organization honored her in 2019 by naming her Professional Woman of the Year. NAHB Professional Women in Building represents over 2,000 women in the home building industry nationwide. Members work in all aspects of the building industry, including serving as business owners, marketing experts, interior designers, mortgage brokers and more. They participate in over 50 local and state chapters across the U.S.
In addition to her leadership roles with PWB, Betsy has served on the Board of Trustees of the NAHB 55+ Industry Housing Council. She was the 2018 Membership Chair of NAHB’s 55+ Industry Council, and also served the NAHB’s Atlanta Chapter as a Board Trustee and former Council Chair.
As Betsy assumes her new role in the organization, together with her new Vice Chair Karen Schroeder, vice president of Mayberry Homes in Lansing, MI, we say congratulations to them both. With priorities that include establishing pathways for members who wish to deepen their involvement as leaders and growing the local PWB Council Model, we know it will be a great year for the PWB with Betsy at the helm.