Memories of Our Father, An Interview with Ryan & Chris Raveis

What better way to celebrate Father’s Day then having Ryan and Chris Raveis share their favorite memories of their dad, Founder and CEO of William Raveis Real Estate, Bill Raveis. As all of you are celebrating your fathers today, we reflect on what these great men have taught us! Thank you, Dads!

Bill Sr. & Bill Raveis at his high school graduation

What was your first memory of your father at work?

Ryan: It had to be either a company softball game or a Christmas party.  We have several members of the company who started with Dad nearly 40 years ago who remember me running around the Christmas parties in my diapers!

Chris: He had a very big desk I would hide under.

Ryan Raveis

What is your favorite memory of your Dad at work?

Ryan: I have a lot of memories working with Dad through the years, but by far may favorite is over 30 years ago when I used to visit him at work.  At the time, the Fairfield office was a two-story building with Dad’s office on the second floor a large staircase overlooking the entire first floor.  We would run up the stairs and slide down the railing over and over.

Chris: When we got to visit the construction sites with Dad, and see how the real estate industry worked from the ground up.

Raveis family photos

When did you realize how hard your Dad worked for what he has today?

Ryan: When I was a child, we had a phone our kitchen that was a hot-line where any customer could “Call Bill.”  The number was advertised in newspapers and inevitably it would always ring during dinner but Dad always picked up.  As a child though, this was just the norm for us.

The first time I really saw what Dad did for a living was when I was following him as an intern between semesters in college. We had just acquired two offices in Greenwich and Darien that a large firm in New York City sold to us, and Dad took me to make the announcement to the group of new agents. It always struck me how he rolled up his sleeves that day and wrapped his arms around our new team members. He knew everybody’s name and their personal story by the end of the day. He takes a real interest in people.  To him it’s not work, but something he enjoys doing.

Bill Raveis as a young dad!

What are the qualities your Dad possesses that you admire? Has he passed any on to you?

Ryan: Dad’s ability to see further down the road than most and get there more quickly.  A normal person will go through steps “A”, then “B” then “C” to get to “D”; Dad just goes A to D.  He also gets people and his extremely compassionate.  Whether any of those rub off on me, I hope so, especially the latter, but that’s not for me to say.

Chris: He has always enjoyed spending time with the people in our company.  I believe he passed that along to me because I also enjoy that part of our business.

How has your father shaped the kind of father you have become?

Ryan: “Shape” is a good way to put it.  As a “Papa” when Meghan and my children were babies, Dad let us figure things out, and we were happy for that.  Now, the biggest impact my Dad has on the way I father is through the subtle virtues he’s passed along the way: patience, compassion, and moral guidance.

Chris: He has taught me that the easy road is not usually the best road. I believe it’s important to teach my kids the same value of hard work.

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