Real estate pioneer 101-year old Howard W. Hanna, Jr. passes

Hanna started the company in 1957 in a suburb of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Real estate pioneer and founder of Howard Hanna Real Estate Services, Howard W. Hanna, Jr., has passed away at 101 years old. Known as the Howard Hanna Company when founded in 1957 by Hanna and his wife Anne Freyvogel Hanna, the company had one office in the Oakland/Shadyside area of Pittsburgh, two blocks from the family home. 

Since that time, Howard Hanna Real Estate Services has grown into one of the largest independent brokerages in the country. They ranked No. 5 in transaction sides and No. 7 by sales volume in the latest RealTrends 500 ranking of top brokerage firms. The company is now in its third generation of leadership.

“Howard Hanna was a true pioneer but the thing that impressed me the most about him was how even well into his 90s, he would take the time to write personal notes of welcome to new agents and staff of Howard Hanna companies,” said Steve Murray, senior advisor to RealTrends. The company reported that he still came into the corporate office at age 97 to attend grand openings and speak at company event.

“He was a true gentleman. I know he will be missed, not only by members of his family but by all the people who had the pleasure of meeting him over the last many years,” said Murray.

Howard Hanna Jr.

Howard and Anne Freyvogel Hanna had three children; Howard W. “Hoddy” Hanna, III, Chairman of Hanna Holdings; Helen Hanna Casey, President and CEO of Howard Hanna Real Estate Services; and Annie Hanna Cestra, Executive Vice President and COO of Howard Hanna Real Estate Services. Mr. Hanna has 10 grandchildren and 19 great-grandchildren.