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Bill Watson Named Chairman of Leading Real Estate Companies of the World®

CHICAGO, IL (05/10/11) — William A. Watson, Jr., Chairman and founder of Watson Realty Corp. based in Jacksonville, Florida, has been elected to a two-year term as Chairman of the Board of Leading Real Estate Companies of the World® “LeadingRE” is a global real estate network comprised of 550 of the best-known local and regional real estate firms in the U.S. and 30 countries abroad. The network has 4,600 offices and 140,000 associates who produced $225 billion in annual home sales last year, more than any national franchise brand.

Watson established Watson Realty Corp. with a small office in Jacksonville in 1965. Today, the company is one of the country’s largest and most respected real estate firms, ranked 16th in the nation with over 10,000 transactions in 2010 according to RIS Media’s “Power Broker Report.” Watson Realty’s 1,200 plus sales associates and 450 employees and 39 sales offices serve Northeast and Central Florida as well as South Georgia.

“I welcome the opportunity to serve the outstanding Leading Real Estate Companies of the World® organization as Chairman,” commented Bill Watson. “Despite the economic challenges we continue to face, the desire for housing remains strong, and those who buy a home today will be glad they did in years to come. LeadingRE is committed to providing business resources and international connections to make our market-leading affiliate companies even stronger, all of which contributes to an exceptional real estate experience for our clients across the country and around the world. It is my honor to serve in this new role to succeed my friend and colleague Harold Crye, who made such excellent contributions in this capacity during the past few years.”

Other new officers of Leading Real Estate Companies of the World® include Vice Chairman Robert Sibcy of Sibcy Cline Realtors in Cincinnati; Secretary Pat C. Riley of Allen Tate Companies in Charlotte; and Treasurer Jeffrey S. Detwiler of Long & Foster in the Washington, D.C. area.

Additional board members are immediate past Chairman Harold Crye of Crye-Leike, Nashville; Stephen Baird of Baird & Warner, Chicago; Dan Elsea of Real Estate One, Detroit; Joe Horning of Shorewest Realtors, Milwaukee; Ron Peltier of HomeServices of America, Minneapolis; Michael T. Robinson of Weichert Realtors, Morris Plains, NJ; Michael Saunders of Michael Saunders & Company, Sarasota; and newly elected Director Chris Meyers of Houlihan Lawrence, Inc., Westchester County, NY.

“We are privileged to have such a wealth of talent and leadership on our board of directors.” notes Pam O’Connor, LeadingRE president and CEO.” We know that Bill Watson will do an exceptional job of heading the board based on his strong brokerage track record, insights into the new products and services that will further strengthen our value proposition, and his keen financial mind.”
For more information on Leading Real Estate Companies of the World®, visit www.LeadingRE.com.

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About Leading Real Estate Companies of the World®
Leading Real Estate Companies of the World® (www.LeadingRE.com) is the largest network of top independent local and regional brand-name brokerage firms in the residential sector of real estate. The 550 firms affiliated with Leading Real Estate Companies of the World® are represented by 4,600 offices and 140,000 associates in more than 30 countries worldwide. The organization's leadership is demonstrated by the fact that its affiliates comprise 15 of the top 25 real estate companies in the country. Collectively, LeadingRE affiliates produced nearly 800,000 home sales valued at $225 billion in the U.S. in 2010. In addition, LeadingRE locally-branded affiliates hold the Number One position in sales in 40% of the top 96 markets in the u.S., more than any national franchise organizations.

Leading Real Estate Companies of the World®
161 N. Clark St., Ste. 1250
Chicago, IL 60601

Contact: Kimberly Ecker / Leading Real Estate Companies of the World® / 312.424.0400 x158 / kecker@LeadingRE.com

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