Harlan C. Williams “Harley” passed away peacefully Saturday, December 11, 2021. Harley was the founder of the Harlan C. Williams Company. He was an icon in the real estate profession. The results of his creativity and pro-active thinking can be witnessed throughout Maryland, Pennsylvania, and Delaware. The real estate associates and clientele that he has worked with over the years are deeply saddened by his loss.
Harley's background is what movies are made of........he started life in Port Deposit, Maryland where he attended Jacob Tome Institute for elementary education. From there he transferred to McDonough Military School in Pikesville, Maryland. He left school to join the Marines, serving 1945 through 1946. After his service, he returned to McDonough to receive his degree and go on to attain a B.S. Degree in Agricultural Education from the University of Maryland. In 1951, he took a leap to the Federal Bureau of Investigation where he served as a Special Agent in Washington, D.C., Northeastern Ohio and New York City.
During his service with the FBI, Harley became steadily more infatuated with real estate. In 1954, he left the FBI and became an agent with Emmett S. Hickman Company in Newark, Delaware. From that time on, he made real estate history. He became a broker and opened his own company. Besides being Regional Vice-President of NAR he served on five NAR committees between 1977 and 1985. In 1985, he resigned as NAR Director to run for U.S. Congress in Maryland 1st Congressional District.
His energy seemed to be boundless. While serving on multiple committees at the national level, he was leading the profession on a local level as well: Delaware Association of REALTORS®, President, 1973, Delaware State REALTOR® of the Year, 1973, Delaware State Board of Directors, 1971-1984.
Harley's zest for professionalism led him to connect with several of the most active brokers in Cecil County to create the Cecil County Board of REALTORS®. He was president of the Cecil County Board in 1963, REALTOR ® of the Year, Cecil County BOR in 1964. Throughout the years, Harley remained extremely active with the Board, serving on most major committees.
Harley loved the land. Having been raised helping with the family's summer equestrian camp, he never outgrew his love for horses or his respect for the stewards of the land. In 1967, he initiated and sponsored the Cecil County Farmer of the Year Award through the Cecil County Farm Bureau, which is still presented today.
Harley's influence was far reaching. He will be missed by many segments of the community who have relied on his advice. The Harlan C. Williams Co. name will carry on and we will always feel the loss for the empty seat at our table.