Embattled National Association of Realtors Chief Executive Officer Bob Goldberg has brought forward his retirement.
The announcement comes just days after a US federal jury ruled the National Association of Realtors and two major real estate companies had conspired to inflate buyers’ agent commissions.
Originally, Mr Goldberg had been due to retire at the end of 2024, as announced in June this year.
“After announcing my decision to retire earlier this year, and as I reflected on my 30 years at NAR, I determined last month that now is the right time for this extraordinary organisation to look to the future,” he said.
Mr Goldberg, who has given more than 30 years of service to the association, also expressed his confidence in the appointment of Nykia Wright as interim CEO.
“Nykia’s strategic expertise and forward-looking perspective are exactly what NAR needs to continue advancing its mission in an ever-changing world,” he said.
“I am grateful for the privilege of leading NAR and confident that the association will continue delivering incredible value to its members for generations to come.”
Mr Goldberg’s decision comes after a federal jury last week ruled unanimously against NAR, Keller Williams and HomeServices of America and its subsidiaries HSF Affiliates and BHH Affiliates.
The eight-person jury, after 2.5 hours of deliberation, delivered a verdict in the Missouri antitrust class action lawsuit that could result in damages of up to $5.356 billion.
Immediately following that case, the plaintiffs attorney, Michael Ketchmark, filed another class-action lawsuit against NAR and new residential brokerages, Douglas Elliman, ExP, Redfin, Weichert Realtors, United Real Estate and Howard Hanna Real Estate Services.
The suit is much like the Sitzer/Burnett case filed against NAR, and alleges the agencies conspired to make sellers pay buyers’ agents and increased those commissions.
The complaint alleges the brokerages did so by following NAR’s rule requiring sellers to “make a blanket, unilateral and effectively non-negotiable offer.”
The plaintiffs say that violates federal antitrust laws.
Interim NAR CEO Nykia Wright, is known for her robust leadership at the Chicago Sun-Times and instrumental role in its digital overhaul.
She will assume the interim CEO position on November 20, 2023.
With a background in financial services and as a strategy consultant, Ms Wright also co-founded SonicMESSENGER and has held board positions at several notable organizations.
Tracy Kasper, NAR President, highlighted Ms Wright’s track record, noting that her “deep experience driving organizational transformation” is pivotal for NAR’s strategic, vision, and culture initiatives.
Ms Kasper also commended Goldberg’s significant contributions, describing his tenure as a period of expansion and strength for the association, and celebrating his “well-deserved retirement.”
Ms Wright expressed her commitment to the NAR’s cause, stating, “I am honoured to join the organisation at this important moment, when the opportunity to make a difference in the evolving real estate landscape has never been greater.”
NAR is conducting a comprehensive search to find a permanent successor, as the organisation continues to represent more than 1.5 million members in the residential and commercial real estate sectors, advocating for homeownership and empowering real estate professionals.
Ms Wright’s interim leadership marks a strategic move for the association as it navigates through transformation and change.