Local Builder Wraps Up Term Leading National Association of Home Builders
Tom Woods, founder of Blue Springs-based Woods Custom Homes, was recognized for his service as the 2015 chairman of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) during the association’s International Builders’ Show in Las Vegas on Thursday, January 21, 2016.
Over the past 40 years, Woods Custom Homes has built more than 1,000 homes in the Greater Kansas City area and helped develop dozens of new home communities. As former Mayor of Blue Springs, Missouri, Woods’ leadership of the National Association of Home Builders was a natural blend of his professional expertise and public service background.
“Tom Woods has dedicated most of his adult life to improving communities through new home construction and development. It’s been gratifying to watch Tom in action, working on behalf of homebuilders all over the U.S. to bring about important legislative changes that encourage homeownership and new home construction,” said Brenner Holland, president of the Home Builders Association of Greater Kansas City
A top initiative for Woods during his tenure involved urging Congress to enact housing finance reform ensuring the availability of the 30-year-fixed-rate mortgage as well as working to protect tax code measures that encourage home ownership, such as the mortgage interest deduction and the Low Income Housing Tax Credit. “Our primary focus has been to promote NAHB activities that keep the housing market moving forward and spur job growth,” Woods said. “We also have worked hard to fight unnecessary regulations that hurt home buyers, home builders and remodelers.” Such regulations include the Environmental Protection Agency’s “waters of the United States” rule, which would dramatically extend areas requiring special home building permits. In January, the House of Representatives passed a resolution rescinding the rule, a decision that was hailed by Woods and the NAHB. “The rule would have led to bureaucratic delays, increased project costs and mitigation fees, and would have harmed housing affordability. Two court decisions highlighted serious problems with the rule, and we applaud the House’s action on the issue,” Woods said.
Woods has been active in the NAHB leadership structure at the local, state and national levels throughout his career, serving on NAHB’s Board of Directors since 1983 and as a member of the NAHB Executive Board since 1996. Woods also chaired some of NAHB’s most important and influential committees, subcommittees and task forces, including Federal Government Affairs, State and Local Government Affairs, Education, the Home Builders Institute and BUILD-PAC, NAHB’s political action committee.
Woods was elected president of the Kansas City HBA in 1991 and was selected by his peers as Kansas City’s Builder of the Year in 1995. He received a national achievement award from Professional Builder Magazine in 1999 for his work in education in the home building field while chairing the Home Builders Institute, the workforce development affiliate of NAHB. In addition, Woods served his local community as the mayor of Blue Springs, Mo. from 1978-1981 and was a member of the Blue Springs City Council from 1975-1978. He received a presidential appointment to serve on the Des Moines Federal Home Loan Bank Board from 2002-2005.
Joining Woods in NAHB leadership positions in 2015 were local builders George Schluter, GWS, Inc., chairing the Construction, Codes & Standards committee; Bob Frost, Frost Construction Company, chairman of Association Planning committee and of Region 11; and Mark Hoffman, Hoffman Construction who will chair the Construction Liability, Risk Management and Building Materials committee.