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April 2007
Capturing 50 Years of Economic Growth

This March I was privileged to attend a celebration of Allen Tate and Allen Tate Realtors for 50 years of service and leadership in real estate and in the Charlotte regional economy. Ever since Allen Tate left his hometown of Gaffney, South Carolina, in 1957 headed for Charlotte, he has been a leader encouraging the economic growth of Charlotte and ushering new residents into this community. Now, at age 75, Allen has not slowed down except to celebrate this milestone.
    
Notably, Allen Tate Realtors reported a total residential sales volume of $6.78 billion in 2006. That volume was up from $5.95 billion in 2005. In terms of transactions, those sales were the result of 17,144 listings, 28,554 sales transactions, and 24,446 closed transactions.
    
Over the years, Allen Tate and his management team including Pat Riley and Gary Scott have launched several other enterprises under the Allen Tate name in addition to Allen Tate Realtors, including Allen Tate Insurance, Builder Services, Inc., Allen Tate Mortgage, Allen Tate Home Services, and the Allen Tate School of Real Estate.
    
Allen Tate and Pat Riley do not see 2007 as the zenith year for their company. They see it as just another step in their expansion as they spread their business leadership and activity to Winston-Salem, Greensboro and the Research Triangle. They are even looking into other metropolitan areas of North Carolina and South Carolina. Allen Tate Realtors certainly is well-positioned to continue to expand its impact on the Charlotte region and beyond.
    
With 50 solid years of experience, there are few persons so well situated as Allen Tate to recall the important changes that have occurred in the Charlotte region over that period of time. It would be extremely valuable to capture Allen Tate’s memories and recall the challenges and changes that have occurred over the last half century. In fact, why not gather and collect the input of all those important leaders who are still alive and can contribute from their own personal experiences to an accurate history of the plans, debates, decisions and activities that have culminated in the economic boom that Charlotte is currently experiencing.
    
Contributing to that endeavor, WTVI, Charlotte’s community television, has created a valuable series entitled, Legacy, the Making of a Great City. Running from April through December 2007, WTVI will present interviews with 20 remarkable civic leaders to learn about their insights into Charlotte and the changes they have witnessed over time. This series is expected to continue into 2008 as well.

     With over 80,000 new residents moving to Charlotte every year, it would be immensely helpful to provide an accurate and comprehensive history of the last 50 in Charlotte’s development.

     People want to know how Charlotte got to where it is today. Charlotte’s growth is the result of courageous and thoughtful leaders who have contributed their time and energies to continue to improve and build upon the foundation of this city before them.

     From the building of the Charlotte Douglas Airport, to the growth of Duke Energy and the creation of Lake Norman and Lake Wylie, to the Charlotte Motor Speedway, to the building of Bank of America and Wachovia, to the construction of the convention center, to efforts to bring the NFL to the Carolinas, to the struggle over the Bobcats and Bobcats Arena, and even to the campaign to bring the NASCAR Hall of Fame to Charlotte, this city has an incredibly important economic history.

     It is high time that this history is collected and the stories are told so that future families and generations will have a clear understanding and appreciation of the dynamics that created this marvelous region. We are anxious to contribute to the publication of this history.

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