Harry C. Elmstrom

President of the National Association of REALTORS® - 1977

Harry C. Elmstrom*, a Ballston, N.Y., REALTOR®, forcefully addressed such pressing issues as energy, neighborhood revitalization, rent control and housing affordability during his term.

Under his leadership, the REALTORS® Energy Conservation Committee was formed with Mr.Elmstrom appointing Tom Grant, The Association's first vice president as chairman. The committee produced numerous press releases as well as a 16-page booklet and a sound slide presentation for local REALTORS® to use in educating the public on energy conservation in the home. Mr. Elmstrom supported President Carter's voluntary energy program but vigorously opposed such mandatory measures as legislation which would prohibit the sale of a home that did not meet certain energy standards.

Under Mr. Elmstrom's direction, the Association endorsed two legislative proposals aimed at assisting first-time buyers. One dealt with the expansion of the FHA graduated payment mortgage plan while another called for tax breaks for those savings accounts earmarked for home downpayments.

Also, Mr.Elstrom recognized the need for a concerted, full-time effort in community revitalization and formed a steering committee for the REALTORS® Neighborhood Revitalization Program.

Active at all levels of the REALTOR® organization, Mr. Elmstrom served his local community on the Mayor's Advisory Committee for Park Development, the Chamber of Commerce, the Saratoga County Boy Scout Council and the Ballstrom Spa (NY) Library Committee.

A master sergeant in the Air Force, he served 42 months during World War II. Prompted by a deep interest in the free enterprise system and the intriguing challenge of operating a small business, Mr.Elmstrom decided to enter the real estate field.

Addressing the challenges facing the real estate industry in 1977, Mr. Elmstrom said: "Americans do not want to be victims of their own government . . . we REALTORS® have the obligation not only to protect our interests but to help protect the interests of the nation's homeowners."

Source: Presidents of the National Association of REALTORS®, (Chicago: NAR, 1980).