Walt McDonald*, a REALTOR® from Riverside, CA, was the 2004 President of the National Association of REALTORS®.
Born in Oklahoma, McDonald relocated to California in 1954 after graduating from high school. He served two years of active duty in the U. S. Marine Corps and four in the Reserves. Self-taught in the business of real estate, McDonald sold a house his first day on the job. He was a self-described “small-town REALTOR®”, and held the GRI designation and the AHWD certification.
McDonald, a REALTOR® since 1964, was the broker-owner of Walt McDonald Real Estate. Opened in 1969, McDonald’s single-office, independent firm grew to 17 sales associates, specializing in property sales, leasing, and lending.
On the state and local levels, McDonald served as president of the California Association of REALTORS® in 1993, and sat on its Board of Directors from 1971. He was made an honorary director for life. In 1973, McDonald served as president of the Riverside/Moreno Valley Association of REALTORS® (now Inland Valleys Association of REALTORS®).
On the national level, McDonald served as the NAR President-elect in 2003, and as First Vice President and a Director in 2002. He served on NAR’s Executive Committee from 1996, and was a Regional Vice President in 1998.
With McDonald serving as President in 2004, NAR became the first trade association to exceed one million members. Also, the NAR-backed American Dream Downpayment Initiative was implemented, the association successfully defended its right to the REALTOR® trademark, and NAR helped pass multiyear reauthorization of the flood insurance program.
McDonald’s other honors and activities included serving on the advisory board of the local Habitat for Humanity chapter, serving on the advisory board for the Riverside National Bank from 1989, serving on the advisory board for Fannie Mae in 2002 and 2003, Chair of the board of Real Estate Business Services, Inc., President of the Riverside County Real Estate Council, and he also served on the California Department of Real Estate’s Advisory Commission through 1998.
He passed away in February 2021.
Source: National Association of REALTORS® Archives
Learn more about Walt McDonald:
Walt McDonald, 2004 President and Bridge Builder, (REALTOR® Magazine, Jan. 2004)
A Word of Thanks, (REALTOR® Magazine, Nov. 2004)