To mark the 50th anniversary of the Fair Housing Act, Texas REALTORS® yesterday hosted events at its headquarters, the Lyndon Baines Johnson Presidential Library, and the Thompson Conference Center at the University of Texas at Austin. The federal act and its state counterpart, the Texas Fair Housing Act, prohibit discrimination in housing based on disability, race, color, religion, national origin, sex, and familial status.

Here are some highlights from speakers at the celebration:

  • Keynote speaker state Rep. Nicole Collier (pictured), said that everyone must be mindful of the potential for discrimination. “We’re all in agreement about fair housing and equality, but we disagree on how to get there,” she said. “I rely on you, the experts, to educate us on what works and what doesn’t work.”
  • State Rep. Eddie Rodriguez thanked attendees for their work on fair housing issues and said he hopes more progress is made to turn the promise of laws into reality. 
  • Fred Underwood, director of diversity & community outreach programs at the National Association of REALTORS®, discussed the history of housing segregation and the events that led to the passage of civil rights legislation and the federal Fair Housing Act. 
  • Kaki Lybbert, 2018 chairman of the Texas REALTORS®, addressed the organization’s commitment to quality education and understanding about fair housing for all Texas REALTORS®.
  • Courtney Johnson Rose, 2018 president of the Texas Association of Real Estate Brokers, spoke about her organization’s fair housing civil rights advocacy for Texas homeowners, and said that TAREB still exists because there is a long way to go on fair housing issues. 
  • Steve Crorey, 2018 president of the Austin Board of REALTORS®, discussed the future of fair housing in Austin through CodeNEXT, the city’s efforts to rewrite its building codes.

Look for more fair housing resources—including a handout for consumers (PDF)—in the April Texas REALTOR® magazine.