He died of complications from a stroke that he suffered two weeks ago. He was 83 years old.
Dick was born in Detroit in 1929 to Staunton and Marjorie Elsea. He was raised in Southwest Detroit and the Downriver area. He graduated from Lincoln Park High and then received a degree in business and economics from Michigan State University. After his graduation, he served in the U.S. Air Force. He then became a sales associate at Elsea Realty and Investment Co., which was founded by his father in 1929. Dick became a branch manager of Detroit-based Elsea Realty in 1959. Once he earned the title of President in 1970, Dick negotiated a merger with three other Metro Detroit real estate firms and renamed the company “Real Estate One.”
In 1999, Richard Elsea’s sons, Dan and Stuart, gained positions as co-presidents of Real Estate One. Richard then served as Chief Executive Officer and board chairman.
Together, Richard, Dan and Stuart went on to acquire Johnstone & Johnstone Realtors in 1995 and Max Broock Realtors in 2002. On Tuesday, Dan and Stuart announced Real Estate One’s newest acquisition of The Charles Reinhart Company, expanding their footprint in the greater Ann Arbor and Washtenaw County area.