Editor’s note: As part of our online special Real Estate Quarterly this month, we asked several longtime employees of Ebby Halliday Companies about the late founder of the real estate firm, which is celebrating its 75th anniversary this year.
Kay Weeks works at Ebby’s Little White House, and has been with Ebby Halliday Companies for 28 years. She told us a bit about what it was like to work with Halliday.
PN: How long have you been working for Ebby?
KW: “I have worked for Ebby Halliday, Realtors for 31 years. I have been privileged to work all those years in “Ebby’s Little White House” at the corner of Preston and Northwest Highway. Ebby was omnipresent at that office as she lived in the Federal styled house behind the office facing Preston Road.”
PN: What are a couple of your favorite memories of Ebby Halliday?
KW: “I have several fond memories about Ebby.
Foremost is Ebby’s love for people, relationships and connecting people with others. She was a people person and people connector. She truly cared for people.
She loved to thank people who did a good deed. The consummate thank you note writer, she always reached out with a hand written note to anyone who did something noteworthy. She often sent second thank yous to those who thanked her back!! A favorite memory comes from several years ago when Ebby was in her early nineties. I had a large estate property listed. Ebby would often check on activity and buyer interest with me. The third wife of a notable businessman had been looking at the property. Ebby, who knew all in the community, contacted the husband and worked with him and the seller who she also knew, to broker the sale as a first year anniversary present for his wife. That was a testament to her relationships in the community, her sense of caring for others and her continued quest for getting the deal done for the betterment of all parties.
I also adored the 100th birthday celebration in honor of Ebby held at the Meyerson. It was a grand occasion!”
PN: How has the business changed since you started working for Ebby?
KW: “The real estate business has changed considerably in 30 years!! In the old days we had printed MLS books that were published every 2 weeks. Offers were driven to the other agent, that led to the fax machine, which has moved to email and of course now everything is online and so much more accessible to the consumer. Transactions, offers and it all now can de conducted on a iPhone or other handheld devices. It is truly amazing and exciting!
PN: What do you think Ebby would make of what is going on nowadays – first with the increased use of technology in the real estate world, but also selling homes during a major pandemic?
KW: “I think Ebby would be excited with what is going on today. She was always forward thinking. She was always proud that technology could make things easier for the consumer and agents.
I do not think she would be phased at all with selling property during this pandemic. After all she was a mere 7-year-old living on a farm during the Spanish Flu pandemic in 1918. A few years after that, her family destitute, she as an 12-year-old, sold Cloverine Salve via her pony, Old Deck, To the various neighboring farmers. She was a positive and resilient woman, one that would encourage us all to move forward while staying safe.”