The turmoil at the top at the National Association of Realtors (NAR) has continued, with president Tracy Kasper resigning just two months after Chief Executive Officer Bob Goldberg brought forward his retirement.
But while Mr Goldberg retired on the back of controversy surrounding the loss of an anti-trust commissions case, Ms Kasper told NAR’s leadership team she recently received a threat to disclose a past personal, non-financial matter unless she compromised her position at NAR.
She refused to do so and instead reported the threat to law enforcement.
Ms Kasper said in the circumstances, it was best for the organisation that she step down.
“As president and a long-time member of NAR, I have always put the interests of NAR first,” she said.
“As a result of the recent threat and given the significance of this moment for myself, my family and the organisation, it is again time for me to put the interests of NAR first.
“So, it is with a mix of gratitude and a heavy heart that I submit my resignation as your president effective immediately.
“In doing so, it gives our Leadership Team the ability to take the reins and forge forward in effecting the change that we all have worked so hard over the past few months to begin.
“I know I leave our members, our staff and our association in good hands.”
Details of the blackmail, including the perpetrator and specifics of the threat, remain undisclosed.
Kevin Sears, the recently appointed President-Elect, has assumed the role of president in light of Ms Kasper’s resignation.
Adding to the gravity of the situation, NAR’s executive committee adopted a stringent policy in December, which dictates that any elected officer who resigns or is removed from office will be ineligible for any benefits or privileges of their former position, barred from serving as an NAR director, and prohibited from attending NAR meetings and events, unless specifically exempted by the executive committee.
Ms Kasper’s term as president has been tumultuous from the start.
According to Inman, former NAR president Kenny Parcell resigned in August, just two days after sexual harassment allegations against him were published in the New York Times.
In September, some NAR employees called for Chief Executive Officer Bob Goldberg, NAR Chief Legal Officer Katie Johnson, and NAR’s head of human resources, Donna Gland, alleging the executives protected those accused of creating a toxic work environment.
Then in November, Mr Goldberg brought his retirement forward, just two days after NAR lost a class action antitrust case, which could result in damages of up to $5.356 billion.