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Gary Keller is again CEO of Keller Williams, resuming a role he first held in 1983, when the brand was founded, according to an announcement by the company this week. At the same time, Josh Team, chief innovation officer, has been named president. John Davis, who was appointed CEO in 2017, is exiting the organization.

Keller announced the change in an email to staff on Tuesday, citing the company’s digital-first focus as impetus for the shift. The email, in part, read:

Keller Williams has always been a pioneering company focused on growth, innovation and culture. Nothing has changed. I am as committed as ever to positioning Keller Williams to lead the real estate industry into the future. 

Over the past several months in preparation for this transition, Josh began leading all marketing, training and operational efforts for the company. As president, he will continue to guide the company to deliver the best agent solutions and consumer experiences powered by technology. This includes oversight of Labs and the roll-out of industry-first innovations, including KW Command and Kelle. 

Together through Labs, Josh and I have collaborated with thousands of you—our agents and leaders in the field—to design the real estate operating system of the future, putting your data back in your hands, and empowering you through AI to provide more value to your clients.

Keller also thanked Davis in the note, applauding “his decades-long service and contributions to the company.” Davis logged more than 20 years at the organization, most recently driving record recruitment through the “Growth Initiative,” which he conceived and developed. According to the company, more than 100,000 agents have joined since its launch in 2011.

KW Labs, the hub for innovation at Keller Williams, beat out competitors in a hackathon at the inaugural Innovation, Opportunity and Investment (iOi) Summit, hosted by the National Association of REALTORS® this past summer, while Kelle, Keller Williams’ AI-powered assistant, has been downloaded by more than 135,000 agents, according to the company.

Keller Williams will host its annual conference, Family Reunion, next month.

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Suzanne De Vita is RISMedia’s online news editor. Email her your real estate news ideas at