The Vault: Advocating for the Industry: Baird & Warner Early Supporter of Real Estate Board

In 1883, a new code of professionalism in the real estate industry emerged from the ashes of the Great Chicago Fire.

As Chicago successfully rebuilt from the Great Chicago Fire, real estate leaders formed the Chicago Real Estate Board (known today as the Chicago Association of Realtors). The Chicago Real Estate Board was formed to encourage professionalism and ethics to support the city’s burgeoning real estate industry.

And Baird & Warner was right there on the front lines. Since the group’s founding, four officers of Baird & Warner have served as president: Lyman Baird; George L. Warner; Wyllys Baird; and Warner G. Baird.

“To secure more system and uniformity in the renting, care, and management of real estate in the city of Chicago; to better protect and promote the interests of those entrusting property to their care; to protect themselves and their clients against dishonest and immoral tenants; and to generally correct existing abuses and to prevent their future occurrence,” the group said at its founding.

In 1885, Lyman Baird was the second president of the board and received a clock as a gift. Today, the clock is featured in Baird & Warner’s Family Room at its Loop office.

The group took up a number of historic policy issues — some of which Baird & Warner leadership supported and some of which they opposed. In 1886, the board claimed opposition to the increase of assessments in Cook County. In 1965, past Baird & Warner President John Baird resigned his post on the board in opposition to the group’s stance against fair housing, and became an outspoken supporter of making sure housing was open to all.

Baird & Warner celebrated its 166th birthday this year, and doing things the right way continues to be its mantra.

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