Walter Seton Schmidt*, MAI, CPM, was official spokesman for real estate during the formative period of federal legislation to stabilize mortgage credit. He wrote the Fletcher Bill for a central mortgage discount bank many of whose principles were incorporated in federal mortgage legislation. He headed the study on building obsolescence, made by the National Association of Real Estate Boards at the request of the Treasury Department. The study formed the basis for income tax deductions.
Following his presidency of the National Association of Real Estate Boards, Schmidt served as the first president of the Society of Industrial REALTORS® and as president of the Urban Land Institute. A member of the War Department’s Advisory Committee on Real Estate, he was a principal advisor in setting up the department’s real estate purchase system for national defense.
Mr. Schmidt was president of the Frederick A. Schmidt Realty Co., Cincinnati, founded by his father 1878. President and founder of Realty Factors of America, Inc., he was also president of the Liebold Farrell Building Company; treasurer of Perkins & Geoghegan, Inc. (insurance), and of George L. Rack, Inc.; president of the Seton Realty Company, the Southwestern Ohio Realty Company, the Leelanau Realty Company, Quality Homes, Inc., and the Thomas B. Punshon Engineering Company; and vice president, John Bunker Inc., Advertising.
Skilled violinist, poet, philanthropist, and trained in the law, Mr. Schmidt was chairman of a Citizen’s Committee on Replanning Cincinnati, director of its Community Chest, trustee of its College of Music, and director of its Street Railway Company. As a member of the Charter Committee, he helped bring the charter system of government to Cincinnati. As chairman of the Public Recreation programs, Xavier University named its library and field in his honor.
Source: Presidents of the National Association of REALTORS®, (Chicago: NAR, 1980).