Executive moves in the world of Big Apple real estate were all the rage last month. Dottie Herman stepped down as head of Douglas Elliman (replaced by long-time Elliman exec Scott Durkin), and real estate industry icon Diane Ramirez was appointed as chief strategy officer for the New York City brokerage operations of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices (BHHS) New England/Westchester/New York Properties. One of the industry’s most prolific and venerated leaders, Ramirez left her post as executive chairman and senior advisor of Brown Harris Stevens (BHS) to join the firm run by Candace Adams. In 2020, BHS acquired Halstead, the firm Ramirez founded in 1984 with Clark Halstead.
In her new role, Ramirez is charged with expanding the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices footprint within New York and throughout surrounding states, and will oversee key initiatives, such as the implementation of technology and services to bolster agents’ business.
“This opportunity is playing to all my creative juices,” said Ramirez. “This is putting me back to what I really love doing—connecting with agents, staff and executives, and really listening and collaborating. This is going to play into my love of thinking forward and being innovative. It’s like a clean canvas.”
Ramirez has been a long-time admirer of Adams, president and CEO of BHHS New England/Westchester/New York Properties, and got to know her over the years at New York real estate board meetings. “I got to see first-hand her vision and her knowledge,” she said. “Now we’re starting to finish each other’s sentences. I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to work with her.”
Adams is equally excited. “Diane is an incredible strategist, and she oozes emotional intelligence,” she explained. “She brings hands-on expertise with her in the New York City market and the industry as a whole. She’s got a tremendous reputation and is incredibly respected by brokers and agents. She knows how to build culture, and that’s what’s most important to me.”
Ramirez’s wide-ranging influence, keen market insight and tireless work ethic have been hallmarks of her decorated real estate career. She broke into the industry as an agent before co-founding Halstead. Terra Holdings purchased Halstead in 2001, and through Ramirez’s leadership, the company grew to more than 30 offices and 1,400 agents across New York City, The Hamptons, Hudson Valley, New Jersey and Fairfield County, Connecticut.
“Diane is a real estate genius,” said Adams. “Her wisdom and grace, coupled with her unparalleled expertise, make this a phenomenal partnership—not only for our New York Properties family, but neighboring markets.”
Ramirez holds equal esteem for the BHHS brand. “Berkshire Hathaway is a brand that I’ve admired for so long, and I’m thrilled to be a part of it,” she said. “Because of the great depth of resources, leadership and knowledge they have, they know what agents need—not what some techie thinks they need.”
The addition of Ramirez will help Adams achieve her goal: “Everyone will always say they want to be No. 1, but we want to be the best.”
For more information, please visitwww.bhhsNEproperties.com, www.bhhsNYproperties.com or www.bhhsWestchester.com.