Julio S. Laguarta*, the 1982 president of the National Association of REALTORS®, took office when the housing industry was in its most depressed state in 40 years and forecasts for its recovery were no better.
To remedy the situation, Laguarta and other Association leaders took political action by establishing a congressional contact network comprising REALTORS® across the country. They deluged congressmen with letters, telegrams and phone calls, urging the government to lower interest rates. The efforts of the network were targeted at what came to be known as “Paralysis in Government” and included the voice of homeowners and the general public.
As first vice president, Laguarta traveled more than 60,000 miles expressing concern over the nation’s economy and its effect on the housing market. Besides working to have the proceeds on the new All Savers Certificate tied to mortgage money, he also urged passage of the 1981 tax reform bill, which included accelerated depreciation of all structures, residential as well as commercial.
Laguarta has taken a long and active role in Association matters, serving as president of the CCIM Institute in 1973, trustee and national director of the REALTORS® Political Action Committee (RPAC), and chairman of the Political Affairs and REALTORS® Legislative committees, among other national leadership positions.
On the state and local levels, Laguarta became a charter member of the Commercial Multiple Listing Service Million Dollar Club in 1968 and was 1970 president of the Gulf Coast Society of Industrial REALTORS®. He served as president of the Houston Association of REALTORS® in 1967 and the Texas Association of REALTORS® in 1975. He was also a key figure in the founding of the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University in 1971.
A native Houstonian, Laguarta was president of Laguarta & Co., a full-service real estate company with multiple offices. He attended the University of Texas, graduating with a bachelor’s degree in business administration.
Source: National Association of REALTORS® Archives