Justin Bailey is new CEO of Realty Executives Associates

Sandra ClarkOn the Grow, Powell

Realty Executives Associates Inc., the largest real estate firm in East Tennessee with over 600 agents and full-time staff, today announced that Justin Bailey has been named chief executive officer effective July 1.


Steve Fogarty, president and CEO for the last 13 years, will continue as president and as principal broker of the Farragut office. “At my core, brokering a real estate office is what I love most,” he said. “Justin and I share in the belief that our executive team should stay connected to the industry by brokering offices and helping agents.”

The two roles will now be split making Bailey the highest-ranking officer in the company along with being principal broker of the Bearden office. He is a fourth generation Realtor and founder of Bailey & Co. with offices in Powell and West Knoxville. He was an agent with Realty Executives for five years before starting his independent firm, growing it from four to 50 agents in less than four years. The Bailey brand became synonymous with professionalism, trust and integrity.

The Bailey & Co. agents and staff will join Justin at REA. Prior to real estate, Justin was a staff associate for Knoxville Young Life. He and wife Kristin have three children.

“Justin is the right leader for us,” said Fogarty. “His extensive real estate background, admiration in the industry and business development skills will help strengthen our community partnerships, develop our agent-training platforms and expand our presence even further in this market.”

Bailey praised the professionalism of Realty Executives agents and the company’s growth under Fogarty’s leadership.

“I am very excited to be joining the Realty Executives leadership team and sincerely humbled by the opportunity to lead such a storied local brokerage,” said Bailey. “Realty Executives has a great business model, technology suite and talented broker team that uniquely positions it to capitalize on the ever-changing real estate industry. REA agents, consistently high-producers, value client relationships over a one-and-done transaction – the basis of long-term success.

“Admittedly, I was hesitant at first. Bailey & Co was like a fourth child to me. I will forever be grateful for the agents who took a chance on me and my vision for that company. They have become some of the dearest people in my life.”

Why the job change?

“Once I saw that Realty Executives did not pass down franchise fees to agents on their commissions and offered a true flat-fee model, I began to consider Steve’s offer. As the industry evolves through restructuring, consolidation and technology migrations, I believe REA is in the best position to provide cost-effective services to help agents efficiently manage the closing process and maximize their budgets. Ultimately, it’s about Realtors helping individuals and families and it’s important that the firm does everything it can to get out of the way and let that happen.”

Bailey was named one of Knoxville’s up and comers as a 40 under 40 honoree by the Knoxville Business Journal; he was named Business Person of the Year in Powell and recently graduated in the 2020 class of Leadership Knoxville. He serves on the Board of Directors for the Knoxville Area Association of Realtors where he received a 2017 Presidential Award and was named the 2019 Managing Broker of the Year. At 38, he will become the youngest CEO in the state to lead a company with over 600 agents and staff.

Bailey holds a bachelor’s degree in counseling psychology from Trinity Christian College and earned a GRI from the National Association of Realtors Graduate Realtors Institute. He completed his executive education at Harvard Business School’s Real Estate Management Program in finance, design and leadership. He is currently in grad school working toward an AMDP in real estate from Harvard where he will graduate with the 2022 class.

About Realty Executives Associates

Realty Executives Associates is the leading real estate firm in Knoxville, founded by Vance Burkey in 1979. It combines a long local history with the resources of a national brand. REA has had the highest transaction volume in the marketplace for over four decades with over $1.8 billion in sales in 2019. In Real Trends 500 market report, Realty Executives Associates was the 62nd largest real estate company in the United States.

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