Julia Lashay Israel
Head of Inclusion and Belonging
Keller Williams Realty International
The terms “discrimination” and “racial bias” evoke mixed emotions in the real estate industry—depending on whom you’re talking to. However, in the Black community, they represent a longstanding history of challenges turning the American Dream of homeownership into a reality. On the latest episode of RISMedia’s RealEdge Podcast, Julia Lashay Israel discusses improving Black representation in the real estate industry and how that correlates to improvements in service and successfully boosting homeownership in the Black community. Drawing from her work at Keller Williams, she details the strategies that she herself is implementing to improve the overall sense of belonging and inclusion among agents in addition to offering her insight as far as how viewers can do the same in their respective firms by creating a space for different groups to have the tools and resources they need.
On this week’s episode, you’ll learn:
1:01 – Understanding Julia’s role at KW
3:01 – How to create a space for different groups to receive the assistance they need
5:36 – Why representation matters at every level of the industry and brokerage
7:05 – How Black representation in real estate impacts Black homeownership for the better
9:36 – Acknowledging that there is discrimination in real estate
12:11 – Why it’s important to report instances of bias and discrimination in the industry
15:25 – How KW is boosting its pool of Black real estate agents
20:14 – Ways to counter unconscious and conscious bias? Talk it out
21:38 – Building an understanding of and utilizing different perspectives
23:08 – What is required to move the needle forward?
25:40 – Parting words from Julia
As head of Inclusion and Belonging, Julia Lashay Israel advises, trains and coaches leaders, team members and agents to recognize and address diversity, equity and inclusion opportunities and challenges across the organization.
Over the past 20 years, Israel has trained and coached thousands of real estate professionals. A community leader and homeownership advocate, Israel has instructed continuing education courses on diversity, career development and homeownership.
Israel is co-founder and owner of Refocus University, a real estate training firm that’s focused on career development and diversity. She also serves as a managing partner of The Signature Group at Keller Williams Realty Integrity Lakes in Minneapolis.
In 2022, Israel led the launch of Keller Williams’ diversity certification Agent of Distinction, a five-module, professional education offering that provides the training, resources and tools needed to grow a real estate business with a broader customer base.
During the NAR NXT conference this past November, Israel taught the Color of Real Estate (CORE) course, offering an overview of Fair Housing policy and the historic practices contributing to the homeownership gap across the U.S. population.
Links and Resources