RISMEDIA, July 21, 2008-Zillow.com announced the formation of a Broker Advisory Board to provide counsel on existing Zillow services for the real estate industry, and evaluate ideas for future products and services. According to the company, Zillow® has quickly grown its number of real estate industry partners since the launch of its listings feed program in November 2007, with nearly 3 million for-sale listings today, and hundreds of prominent listings partners. More than five million unique users visit Zillow every month, with 90% owning a home, and two-thirds buying or selling now, or in the next one to two years.
The members of Zillow’s Broker Advisory Board are 10 influential leaders in the real estate industry who are actively involved in running their respective companies: Steve Baird, president/CEO of Baird & Warner; Ken Baris, president of Jordan Baris; Bob Blount, CEO of RE/MAX Allegiance; Sherry Chris, president and CEO of Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate, LLC; Craig Cuyar, SVP & chief information officer for the Realogy Franchise Group; Dan Elsea, president of Real Estate One; Pat Lashinsky, CEO and president of ZipRealty; Mike Montsko, president of Weichert Lead Network; Harley Rouda, Jr., CEO of Real Living; and Mark Woodroof, managing partner for Prudential Gary Greene.
“In selecting our Broker Advisory Board, we wanted a range of different types of companies represented — both franchise and independent, large and small, national and regional,” said Jorrit Van der Meulen, Zillow’s vice president of partner relations. “We asked people whom we know to be leaders in the industry, and we believe this Board will help us in planning and building our products and services in a way that serves the real estate community to our full potential.”
The Zillow Broker Advisory Board members will meet with Van der Meulen and Zillow’s partner relations team multiple times each year, both at Zillow’s headquarters in Seattle and elsewhere.
About the Board Members
Steve Baird: Stephen W. Baird is the president and chief executive officer of Baird & Warner. Established in 1855, the firm is the oldest residential real estate brokerage in the United States and currently ranks among the nation’s top 12 with an annual sales volume of approximately $5 billion. Under Baird’s leadership, the firm has grown dramatically — currently with a sales force of approximately 1,700 sales associates, who operate from 30 strategically located offices throughout Chicago and its suburbs.
Ken Baris: Ken Baris is the president of Jordan Baris. At the age of 22, Ken was the youngest CRS in the nation and later earned the CRB designation. An industry leader, Baris with a partner developed and license to Top Producer Systems, Top Presenter — an interactive multimedia listing presentation that was the awarded the best new software product of the year by the NAR when it was launched. In the media, Baris has been heard on radio and seen on CNBC and NBC National Nightly News as a real estate expert. Frequently in the press he has been quoted in editorial sections of USA Today, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Real Estate News, Real Estate Business and the Star Ledger. As an author Baris has been published in The Real Estate Professional Magazine, Real Estate Business, Real Estate Today and various industry newsletters. As a speaker Baris has addressed professionals at numerous national conferences on topics such as Practical Technology, Selling on the First Day Out and Unlocking the Power of the Web for Brokers. Established in 1952, Jordan Baris Inc. is one of the premier full-service real estate brokerages in New Jersey and the New York metropolitan area and has a team of over 200.
Bob Blount: Bob Blount is CEO of RE/MAX Allegiance with 35 offices, 1150 agents in Maryland, Virginia, and Washington DC. He is a Director for NAR, MRIS, REIN MLS, and REBR. He serves on several VAR committees and work groups and was on the NAR Gateway PAG. He is recognized as an expert in integrated brokerage business systems. Blount is a former RE/MAX International Broker/Owner of the Year and resides in Virginia Beach, VA.
Sherry Chris: Sherry Chris was appointed President and CEO of Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate LLC in October of 2007. Better Homes and Gardens(R) Real Estate, which is the 5th residential brand for Realogy, will officially launch in July of 2008. Chris was most recently Chief Operating Officer for Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. Overall, Chris has more than 27 years of real estate experience, including, significant senior management positions in the areas of sales and marketing and new technologies, and franchise management. A native Canadian, she began her real estate career in Canada and held increasingly senior positions with Royal LePage for 16 years before taking on executive roles with Real Living (Ohio) and Prudential CA/NV/TX Realty. She joined Realogy in 2006. Well known within the real estate industry, Chris is a frequent speaker at real estate and technology conferences.
Craig Cuyar: Dr. Craig Cuyar is Senior Vice President and CIO for the Realogy Franchise Group. Realogy is a franchisor of six of the most recognized brands in the real estate industry: Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate, CENTURY 21(R), Coldwell Banker(R), Coldwell Banker Commercial(R), ERA(R), and Sotheby’s International Realty(R) Realogy franchises its leading brands to residential and commercial real estate brokerages throughout the United States and around the world. Cuyar is a regular speaker on the Business Value of IT and serves on a number of advisory boards in both the technology and professional services industries. Dr. Cuyar is also an Executive Board Member and President of the New Jersey Chapter of the Society for Information Management.
Dan Elsea: Dan Elsea is the president of brokerage services for the Real Estate One Family of Companies. Elsea has been in the real estate business for over 25 years in a number of capacities within the company from commercial and residential sales to branch and division management. He and his brother Stuart share the leadership of the company and its affiliates. The company is in its third generation in Michigan, having begun as Elsea Realty in 1929 under Staunton Elsea, Elsea and Stuart’s grandfather. Real Estate One brings in $2.4 billion annually, and is the 13th largest brokerage in the nation, employing 1500 agents.
Pat Lashinsky: As the Chief Executive Officer and President of ZipRealty, Pat Lashinsky serves on the Board of Directors and is responsible for the company vision, planning, and overall strategy in addition to day to day oversight of the company’s overall operations and its growth and innovation initiatives. Lashinsky has previously served as President, Executive Vice President of Product Strategy and Development, Vice President of Marketing and Business Development, and as Vice President of Sales at ZipRealty.
Mike Montsko: As President of the Weichert Lead Network, Montsko oversees Weichert, Realtors’ state-of-the-art customer contact center. Prior to his promotion he spearheaded the huge technological initiative that created Weichert’s industry-leading contact center. The only one of its kind in the industry, the Weichert customer contact center uses sophisticated technology to deliver responsive personal service to online and 800-number customers seven days a week.
Harley Rouda, Jr.: Harley Rouda is chief executive officer of Real Living, Inc. Rouda spearheaded the creation of Real Living in February 2002 by acquiring several regional real estate firms to create an agent-centric company that would lead the industry in marketing, technology and professional development. In 2006, REALTOR(R) Magazine named Rouda one of Real Estate’s Top 25 Most Influential Thought Leaders. He earned the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year award in June 2002, in recognition of his industry leadership, innovation and entrepreneurial spirit. In April 2007, he was selected as the vice chair of The National Association of Realtors’ Real Estate Services Advisory Board.
Mark Woodroof: Mark Woodroof is managing partner for Prudential Gary Greene, and has been active in the Residential Real Estate brokerage business for nearly 24 years. In March 2000 Mark became a principal at Prudential Gary Greene, Realtors. This new entity was formed with partner Marilyn Eiland by acquiring the residential assets of Gary Greene, Realtors Better Homes and Gardens and four Prudential affiliates, ultimately creating a market-leading force of over 1100 associates in 18 owned and 9 affiliated offices throughout the greater Houston area. Mark and Marilyn are actively involved in the leadership and daily operations of the company. Mark has been involved with the Houston Association of Realtors since 1991 serving as its chairman in 1999. He has also been active with both the state and national associations serving on numerous committees and is a past director of the Texas Association and current director of the National Association of Realtors as a large broker representative.
For more information, visit www.Zillow.com.