Veteran broker Stewart joins Keller Williams

Veteran Wichita commercial real estate broker Rod Stewart has joined Keller Williams Signature Partners.

Stewart, 65, becomes one of the firm's cornerstone commercial brokers as KW Signature Partners increases its footprint in the Wichita market, said KW partner Penny Johnson. Stewart's office is at the company headquarters at 1635 N. Waterfront Parkway, Suite 150.

"The word 'veteran' is a big part of it," said Johnson, who is a managing partner in the east-side firm with Bud Cortner.

"Rod is very well respected in the community. He's knowledgeable; he's been extremely involved in our community; he's active in the local CCIM chapter. He's a rock star in the commercial industry in Wichita."

Stewart will become a managing director in KW's growing commercial operation, joining former colleagues such as Jad Wolf and Duane Wadley.

"We think we've built a great foundation to grow this side of the business," Johnson said. "Those guys will attract people from the industry who are already established and like-minded with the values and ethics we have here."

Stewart, a member of the Society of Exchange Counselors, has been marketing chairman of the Kansas chapter of the Certified Commercial Investment Member group since 1994.

He is a graduate of Wichita State University and has been active in a broad range of community affairs, including the Wichita Crime Commission, the Wichita Convention and Visitors Bureau, the Sports Commission Task Force, the Urban Renewal Agency and the Wichita/Sedgwick County Economic Development Commission.

Stewart said the opportunity to get in on the ground floor of a growing commercial operation — and to affiliate again after a dozen years as an independent broker — made the decision easy.

"There's an opportunity here to be part of a major national company that's very rapidly growing," he said. "They have a wonderful philosophy of God, family and business, and they have their priorities completely correct."

Stewart said it was time to affiliate with a national brand again.

"For the past 12 years, I've been an independent practitioner all by myself," he said. "It's hard to brainstorm with yourself. You get to taking the counsel of your own fears, thinking the same thoughts day in and day out, and unless you're careful, you can become stilted in your thinking.

"And I think that the day of the independent maverick real estate practitioner is on the wane in the current environment."

Stewart's job as a director will include associate agent recruitment, Johnson said, in specialties such as industrial, farm and ranch, and retail.

"I'm going to lean a lot on our directors on how they'd like to see it go," she said. "They're the ones who've worked in the commercial industry all these years. They know what they need and how they'd like to set things up."