KW, Rocket and Anywhere all landed spots on Forbes’ latest list of best employers for diversity. The news comes amid an ongoing push for greater diversity in real estate.

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As the real estate industry continues to grapple with how to become more diverse, several prominent firms just managed to be named on Forbes’ list of best employers for diversity.

The 500-company list, out this week, is in its sixth year and is the product of a survey that gathered responses from more than 45,000 Americans working at large companies. Rocket Companies was the highest-ranked firm in the housing sector, scoring the 45th spot on the list.

Anywhere was the second-highest ranked real estate company — and the highest ranked among firms operating in the traditional residential brokerage and franchising space — and landed in 160th place.

Keller Williams was not far behind at 171st.

In a statement, Gary Keller — Keller Williams’ cofounder and executive chairman — said “we celebrate our differences.”

Gary Keller

“And, we strive to be the empowering community where everyone belongs and anyone can thrive,” Keller added.

Finally, Freddie Mac scored spot No. 373 on the list.

The rankings span numerous industries. Insurance provider Progressive scored the top spot on the list, followed by TD Bank, TIAA, Air Products and Chemicals, and Clorox.

Though the list includes companies across various industries, real estate in particular has struggled in recent years with improving diversity. The conversation intensified in 2019 after an investigation found widespread discrimination among agents working on New York’s Long Island.

Later reports similarly found instances of discrimination in the housing business.

Since then, numerous companies have embarked on initiatives meant to curb housing discrimination. Those efforts have included all of the major real estate portals excluding crime statistics from listings, as well as the hiring of leaders meant to improve diversity within various real estate organizations.

Keller Williams also touted its own efforts, noting it has rolled out a variety of diversity-focused training programs, as well as a diversity certification, the company said in the statement. Julia Lashay Israel, Keller Williams’ head of inclusion and belonging, also said in the statement that “it’s more important than ever to meet the changing needs of our increasingly diverse consumers.”

“By prioritizing diversity, equity, and inclusion best practices within our agents’ businesses,” she concluded, “we’re empowering and serving our communities best.”

Email Jim Dalrymple II

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