A Top 20 Producer for Jameson Sotheby’s International Realty, Top Producer for Chicago Association of REALTORS®, and named as a Crain’s Chicago Business “Most Influential” Realtor, Judy Gibbons of Barrington has been shattering glass ceilings for more than a decade. One of her recent accomplishments was being named the 2018 President of the Women’s Council of Realtors Chicago—an 80-year-old organization dedicated to advancing women as leaders in the real estate industry. We sat down with our red-headed dynamo recently to learn more about that role and what else is on the horizon. For more information, visit judygibbonsproperties.com.
You recently became president of the Women’s Council of REALTORS® Chicago (NAR). Why is this organization still important to women in the industry?
Believe it or not, men still comprise the top positions at real estate companies, even though more than 58 percent of the Realtors are women. 2018 marks only the sixth time a woman has been the President of NAR. The Women’s Council has long been an advocate for equal pay and opportunities for women in the real estate industry. Unlike many occupations, including those in the Hollywood industry, female brokers in real estate earn the same commission as their male counterparts. The Women’s Council takes pride in being in the forefront of grooming top leadership within the real estate industry. More women should be owners managing brokers and CEO’s of real estate firms. I truly believe we have a place at the table! It’s time for us.
How has the real estate industry changed since you started?
It’s only been 13 years for me, yet so much has changed. Online shopping for homes is one the biggest changes. I actually just sold a house to a buyer that they saw online and had never been inside. It’s closing next week! We can “office” anywhere with our phone and truly can be paperless. Using drones and videos of homes on the market are key to marketing properties today. This augmented reality is now available from Sotheby’s allowing potential buyers to view vacant properties with “virtual” furniture in place to get an idea of what the home can look like furnished. At the end of the day, though, it is still a relationship business and that is still what I love most about real estate!
You recently traveled to Washington, D.C. to fight for home ownership. Tell us more about your efforts to go above and beyond for your clients?
As President for Women’s Council and a major Investor for the REALTORS® Political Action Committee (RPAC) I help defend homeowner’s rights. There is no other group that does this. I am proud to visit and meet with congressmen and senators to explain the issues that affect homeowners and investors. We want less legislation, not more. Women’s Council plans mid-year business meetings and speakers to keep us informed and educated within the real estate community. I also go to Springfield where we help to educate our leaders on a host of issues and bills that come across their desks, which can be detrimental to homeownership and investors in Illinois. We support leaders that support the real estate community regardless of party. The National Association of REALTORS® is the largest association in the country.