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David Bowers is Honored for His Legacy of Community Involvement

Galveston Realtor honored for his contributions in historical preservation.

David Bowers (Photography by Alex Rosa for Outsmart)

David Bowers has lived in Galveston for 35 years. During that time, the renowned Realtor has become a staple in the island community, and he’s now been named “Realtor of the Month” by the Galveston Association of Realtors.

The Galveston Association of Realtors polls its membership to recognize outstanding members who contribute to the local community. Bowers says this recognition means a lot, and it is a testament to his love for Galveston.

“From the history to the architecture, Galveston has it all. the beaches, fishing, sailing, and all the ghost stories attract lots of tourists, and there is a vibrant art community! History is alive every day in Galveston.“ —David Bowers

“From the history to the architecture, Galveston has it all,” he says. “The beaches, fishing, sailing, and all the ghost stories attract lots of tourists. There is a vibrant art community, and it is all very close together! History is alive every day in Galveston. It’s a beautiful place.”

Bowers, who has been in the real-estate industry since his second year of law school, moved to Galveston in the ’80s and was quickly taken with the beach town.

“I was in the title-insurance industry and in 1989 moved to Galveston to live in an old house in a neighborhood of old houses—specifically, lots of 19th-century houses,” he says. “I had bought an 1899 Victorian on 25th Street in 1984 and was being drawn to a very fascinating community steeped in history and 19th-century architecture. My existing job at that time in Houston did not exist in Galveston. There were not a lot of Realtors in Galveston that liked old houses, and I thought it was a wonderful opportunity to sell the ‘old house’ enthusiasm to other people that shared my same thought process.”

Bowers says the most rewarding part of being a Realtor is the ability to help people find their dream home. It’s the fixer-up houses, however, that are his favorite listings.

“I recently sold the famed ‘Mardi Gras House.’ This 1899 Victorian was owned by the estate of Robert Mainor, the past owner of Lafitte’s, the oldest gay bar in Texas. It was in very rough shape and needed everything. My cup of tea! It had been a neighborhood eyesore, but its potential and location were awesome. In the worst real-estate market since 1989 (and in the first spring market where there was no spring market), I was able to sell this property within a month of listing it. Great people bought it and it is going to look very nice when renovated!

“When you’re working and living in an area as rich as Galveston, you find yourself immersed in the history and the legacy of the area,” Bowers says. “I sold one particular house twice on Market Street,” he recalls. “Built in 1859, it was hit by a cannonball in the January 1863 Battle of Galveston. I have sold a house on Postoffice Street three times, and it, too, had been hit in the same battle. I dug up a cannonball at another listing on Postoffice when my Realtor sign kept hitting something in the ground. That cannonball now sits on my bed stand.”

The community is what has made Galveston a destination spot for more than 100 years, Bowers says, and it makes his job all the more satisfying.

“Recently at 23rd Street Station, I was at a fundraiser for an LGBTQ+ youth group for a local Methodist Church. I bought a nude painting at a silent auction. Two days later, while at the local recycling center, a gentleman came up to me to tell me he had seen on Facebook that I had bought the painting and that he had posed for that painting. Stories like this add to the appeal of the island.”

For anyone thinking about buying a piece of property on the island or in the Galveston County area, Bowers says almost all buyers are willing to negotiate. If you find the right home, you should go for it.

“Buy it and negotiate the price,” he says. “I have seen some savvy Realtors write offers with a seller’s contribution going to buy down the interest rate of the buyer’s loan. Research those condo fees and check the financial well-being of the homeowners association. Lots of vacation rentals are coming on the market, and those types of sellers are eager.”

Bowers sees a bright, exciting future for the home market in Galveston, and he believes the island will only continue to evolve as a hotspot for food, entertainment, history, and relaxation.

“There is a lot of infill building on empty lots in the Galveston midtown area,” he says. “City services seem much better than they were 30 years ago. Ball High is now a great school again. The port is much more vibrant than 30 years ago. More jobs make home ownership more prevalent. I think prices will come down. Large second homes can be too expensive to maintain but, like I tell people, five years after buying your second home you will become a permanent resident. It happened to me!”


Favorite brunch spot? The Grand Galvez on Sundays, but that is a big commitment. During the week, I like Nick’s, which is part of Gaido’s at 39th and Seawall.

Best hidden secret in town? Garden Thai at 216 23rd Street

Your go-to spot for self care? Grand Galvez

Best place to celebrate a birthday? For my 70th, I skydived on the West Beach at 11 Mile Road. Galveston Parachute is the only place on the whole Gulf coast that will drop you on the beach. Otherwise, the best Italian food is at Trattoria La Vigna.

Best place to satisfy a sweet tooth? Hey Mikey’s Ice Cream at 2120 Postoffice

Favorite place to work out? I’m a walker. I walk the beach early in the morning between 16th and 45th Streets.

Favorite local business to support? I like supporting specific bartenders!  Jaclyn at Alibi on Tuesdays, Louie and Rex at Lafitte’s and Pier Club and, of course, Cowboy Tom at Lafitte’s.

For more info, visit tinyurl.com/David-Bowers

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Connor Behrens

Connor Behrens is a communications graduate from the University of Houston. He has written for the Washington Post, Community Impact Newspaper and the Galveston County Daily News (the oldest newspaper in Texas). When he's not writing stories, he is likely watching the latest new release at the movie theater.
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