LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance Addresses Missoula, MT Discrimination

November 17, 2021

Honorable President Leslie Rouda Smith
National Association of REALTORS®
500 New Jersey Avenue, NW
Washington DC 20001-2020

CC:
Bob Goldberg, Chief Executive Officer, National Association of Realtors®
Shannon McGhan, Chief Advocacy Officer, National Association of Realtors®
Katie Johnson, General Counsel & Chief Member Experience Officer, National Association of Realtors®
Bryan Greene, Vice President, Policy Advocacy, National Association of Realtors®
Leigh Brown, Vice President of Advocacy, National Association of Realtors®
Charlie Dawson, Vice President of Engagement, National Association of Realtors®
Ryan Davis, Director, Engagement, Diversity & Inclusion, National Association of Realtors®
Kaaren Winkler, Chief Executive Officer, Montana Association of Realtors®
Jim Bachand, Chief Executive Officer, Missoula Organization of Realtors®
Geoff Wood, Chief Executive Officer, Windermere Services Company
Joni Madison, Interim President, Human Rights Campaign
JoDee Winterhof, Sr. VP of Policy & Political Affairs, Human Rights Campaign
Congressman David Cicilline, Chair, Congressional LGBTQ+ Equality Caucus
Shawn Gaylord, Executive Director, Congressional LGBTQ+ Equality Caucus
Lisa Rice, CEO, National Fair Housing Alliance
Karen Lowey, Sr. Counsel, Lambda Legal
Demetria McCain, Principal Dept. Asst. Secretary for Fair Housing & Equal Opportunity, HUD

Dear President Smith,

We are writing today to share our concerns regarding the discriminatory behavior of Mr. Brandon Huber, a member of National Association of REALTORS® (NAR), the Montana Association of Realtors®, and the Missoula Organization of Realtors®, and ask that all respective organizations disassociate themselves from him in an expedient manner. We are also encouraging Windermere Service Company Chief Executive Officer Geoff Wood to immediately end its affiliation with Mr. Huber.

Almost simultaneously as your daughter shared her story as a member of the LGBTQ+ community from the stage at your Inaugural Ball, including the love and support you have shown her, news was breaking about Mr. Huber’s discriminatory actions. There is absolutely no doubt that Mr. Huber violated Article 10 of the Realtors® Code of Ethics which was amended in January 2014 to read:

REALTORS® shall not deny equal professional services to any person for reasons of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, national origin, sexual orientation, or gender identity. REALTORS® shall not be parties to any plan or agreement to discriminate against a person or persons on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, national origin, sexual orientation, or gender identity.

There is also no doubt that Mr. Huber also violated the 2020 amendment to Article 10 that reads in part:

REALTORS® must not use harassing speech, hate speech, epithets, or slurs” against members of those protected classes.

While LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance greatly appreciates the ongoing support from NAR, numerous state, regional and local Realtor® associations and the industry’s increasing work to welcome diversity, equity and inclusion, moments like these demand action. The LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance and our nearly 1,800 members, have an obligation to ensure that our community is protected from any forms of discrimination committed within the housing industry.

It is our belief that Mr. Huber’s behavior, along with the comments from his attorney Matthew Monforton, should not be treated lightly. They are unacceptable and warrant immediate removal as a Realtor® and member of any all related Realtor® groups.

We have also shared a copy of this letter with leadership at the Human Rights Campaign, National Fair Housing Alliance, U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development, Lambda Legal, and the Congressional LGBTQ Equality Caucus.

Sincerely,

Ryan A. H. Weyandt
Chief Executive Officer
LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance
www.realestatealliance.org
Pronouns: He/Him/His

Co-Signers:

John Thorpe – 2021 National President & Chairman, LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance – Ft. Lauderdale, FL
Sean Frank – Director, LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance – Orlando, FL
Jackie Garber – Director, LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance – Baltimore, MD
Austin Rowe – Director, LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance – Memphis, TN
Val Scinto – Director, LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance – Miami, FL
Monty Smith – Director, LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance – Seattle, WA
Octavius Smiley-Humphries – Director, LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance – Raleigh, NC
Feroza Syed – Director, LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance – Atlanta, GA
Kenya Burrell-VanWormer – Director, LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance – Houston, TX
Tim Garvey – Director, LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance – Boston, MA
Alex Cruz – 2021 National Vice President, LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance – Cleveland, OH
Patrick Ruble – 2021 National Secretary, LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance – St. Paul, MN
Scott Armstrong – 2021 National Treasurer, LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance – Tampa, FL
Dave Gervase – 2022 National President, LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance – Ft. Lauderdale, FL
Anita Blue – 2022 National Vice President – Houston, TX
Tommie Wehrle – 2022 National Secretary – Milford, CT
Rodney Mason – 2022 National Treasurer – Atlanta, GA
Erin Morrison – 2022 President-Elect – Austin, TX

3 thoughts on “LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance Addresses Missoula, MT Discrimination

  • John Kerstein

    Since the day I became a licensed Realtor 10 years ago, I have never been as proud to be a member of any organization as I am now, to be a member of this group.

    • Martha Saly

      Ditto! This is a great letter and I am optimistic that it will result in the outcome requested! Unfortunately, it will do nothing to change the ideology of people like Mr. Huber.

  • Caroline Carhart Amory

    Here is the real absurdity: “The realtors’ hate-speech rule is intended to purge Christians from the real-estate business. If you are a Christian who believes the way that tens of millions of American Christians do that homosexuality is wrong, there is simply no way that you can participate as a realtor, with the kind of hate-speech prohibition that exists.”

    Need we say more!!

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