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December 8, 2014

The “Lumberyard of the Future” panel discussion during the 2014 ProDealer Industry Summit in San Diego, California brought together three lumberyard executives to look ahead to the year 2025. 

Participants were: 

• Randy Aardema, US LBM, Executive VP supply chain
• Sam Collins, S.W. Collins Company, President; and
• Joel Russell, Millard Lumber, VP and COO

 [On the physical makeup of the Lumberyard of the Year 2025.]

November 21, 2014

3M has made some adjustments to its leadership team in the form of a new SVP supply chain.

Effecitve immediately, previous managing director 3M United Kingdom-Ireland Region Paul Keel will fill the role in lieu of Christopher Holmes, who is retiring.

“Paul is an accomplished leader whose strategic thinking skills, international experience and demonstrated record of success make him uniquely qualified for this role,” said Inge Thulin, 3M chairman, president and CEO.

November 21, 2014

The National Retail Federation is calling for comprehensive immigration reform more comprehensive than that being offered by President Obama.

November 21, 2014

Event organizers selected a new backdrop for the 11th consecutive Distribution America/PRO Group 2015 Executive Planning Conference -- the towering Santa Rosa Mountains of California. But the focus was the same: business, buying and networking for the two-step distribution channel.

And during the Nov. 18-20 event held in Palm Desert, nine items earned the title "Best New Product Award" winner, ranging from a digital shower head to bacon jerky to a battery-powered reciprocating saw.

November 19, 2014

Highlights of the Home Depot fourth-quarter merchandise lineup include a remote-controlled, pre-lit Christmas tree that shines in 56 light and color options. The season will also bring stocking stuffers like carbide-tipped reciprocal saw blades from Diablo and 21 new Kohler SKUs.

"We look forward to driving excitement this holiday season," said Ted Decker, executive VP merchandising, during the Atlanta-based retailer's third-quarter earnings call.

November 4, 2014

Style Crest, a distributor and manufacturer of specialty building products based in Fremont, Ohio, has reorganized its leadership team.

Under the new executive structure, former CEO Tom Kern will stay on-board as chairman, Bryan Kern will fill his shoes as CEO, and Bill Vogel will serve as EVP sales.

In his new role, Bryan Kern will lead the company together with CFO Ty Frantz. He has been working for the company since 2005, serving in roles such as engineering manager, plant manager and VP operations (his most recent role).

November 3, 2014

From the home improvement industry to the halls of power in Washington, D.C., former Home Depot and Scotts executive Mark Baker was cited as a “top lobbyist” for his work as CEO of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association.

The Hill newspaper, in its listing of top lobbyists, described Baker, a 36-year flight verteran, as the "drumbeat” behind the general aviation industry.

October 31, 2014

San Diego -- Scheduling business consultant Ken Wilbanks for the early morning slot was a strategic move at the 2014 Pro Dealer Industry Summit. His presentation served to rouse and inspire a room full of lumbermen -- or "woodpeckers," as he referred to them -- with notions of a tightly run ship.

October 31, 2014

San Diego -- The National Lumber and Building Material Dealers Association's board of directors appointed Jonathan Paine as the new president and CEO of the organization at its annual meeting on Oct. 28 at the ProDealer Industry Summit here.

Paine has been serving as the association's executive VP since 2012 and replaces outgoing president Michael O'Brien, who is assuming other responsibilities with NLBMDA's management firm, SmithBucklin.

October 21, 2014

CalStar Products' new CFO is Jack Barry, an experienced C-level executive with a wealth of experience in LEAN manufacturing principles.

“Jack’s diversity of experience, across a variety of categories and company sizes, brings key knowledge as CalStar continues its growth trajectory from startup to leading building products company,” said CalStar CEO Joel Rood. “In particular, his knowledge of LEAN principles and ability to maximize internal efficiencies will help CalStar maximize its high-volume manufacturing capabilities.”

October 20, 2014

Illinois-based The Vendor Center will be attending the 2015 Executive Planning Conference hosted by Distribution America. 

The new business-to-business secure website will be presented to Distribution America member distributors and vendors.

“We are thrilled and look forward to demonstrating what a powerful tool The Vendor Center can be for Distribution America Member Distributors and Vendors,” said Darrell Wabschall, president of The Vendor Center.

October 15, 2014

Ronald D. Boire is moving from Sears Holdings in the United States to the top spot at Sears Canada.

Boire will be acting president and CEO of Sears Canada, effective immediately. He was most recently executive VP, chief merchandising officer and president, Sears and Kmart Formats. 

October 13, 2014

Plano, Texas-based Rent-A-Center Inc. appointed Anurag Gupta to VP, enterprise project management office (EPMO).

Reporting to Doug Guziec, senior VP and chief strategy officer, Gupta is charged with broad oversight of Rent-A-Center’s portfolio of business initiatives. His responsibilities include the establishment of processes and controls designed to manage all phases of these initiatives. He's also tasked with the strategic evaluation of prospective business initiatives with an eye for determining which are green-lighted and when they are to be initiated.

October 13, 2014

Home Depot’s Marvin Ellison will leave the world’s largest home improvement retailer to take the top spot at Plano, Texas-based J.C. Penney. 

Ellison is currently executive VP stores at The Home Depot. 

October 12, 2014

Denver -- The General Session at the 2014 True Value Fall Reunion in Denver opened with a few words of inspiration from chairman of the board Brent Burger.

"As you can see from the agenda card, we have a very full program this afternoon and I promise you that it will be one of most exciting General Sessions we have ever had," said Burger, the owner of five Campbell's True Value locations in Maine.

October 9, 2014

True Value has hired Jean Niemi, a former Home Depot communications executive, as the Chicago-based co-op’s new senior director, corporate communications. 

A veteran communications executive with more than 15 years of experience at Fortune 500 corporations and leading public relations agencies, Niemi will lead and oversee all media relations, executive engagements, employee and retailer communications, and manage the corporate communications team.

September 12, 2014

Indianapolis-based hhgregg Inc. has brought on Robert Riesbeck as CFO, effective Sept. 15.

August 27, 2014

Armstrong World Industries has reshuffled its management structure, appointing Donald Maier to the post of EVP and CEO, Armstrong Flooring Products, in order to fill the vacancy left by Thomas Mangas.

Previously, Maier was serving as SVP global operations excellence. He has been with the company since 2010, during which time he played a pivotal role in the company's Lean transformation and established a new project management process and safety program.

He has also worked for TPG Capital Advisors and as VP and general manager of Hill-Rom's North American business.

August 27, 2014

Among the cadre of keynote speakers presenting at this year's Pro Dealer Industry Summit is Ken Wilbanks, a business consultant to the lumber, building materials and home center industry.

Wilbanks cut his teeth working for Home Depot, Lowe's, Ernst Home and Nursery, EBS Building Supply and other industry organizations, ranging from entry-level to executive roles. 

As a consultant, Wilbanks provides educational programs, financial and business process analysis, leadership development and executive coaching.

August 26, 2014

Mineola, New York-based MAX USA, manufacturer of pneumatic nailing tools, named Jerry Gibson as the company’s new Northwest regional sales executive. 

Gibson’s career includes 30 years of experience selling building products through wholesale distribution. He has 17 years of experience of product management for Spenard Builders Supply and 13 years travelling Alaska for Huttig Building Products as a territory manager.

August 6, 2014

Austin, Texas-based Epicor Software Corporation, a global leader in business software solutions for manufacturing, distribution, retail and services organizations, today unveiled the Epicor Eagle N Series.

The solution is described as next-generation retail management software for independent retail businesses. Part of the improvement is a simplified user interface, the company said. 

August 4, 2014

Fort Wayne, Indiana-based Do it Best Corp. announced the retirement of one of its senior leaders while also transitioning another proven executive into a new position.   

Effective Oct. 24, Do it Best VP of Lumber and Building Materials Quent Ondricek will retire his position, while Gary Nackers, currently director of program development for LBM, will move into that role, effective Sept. 15. 

August 1, 2014

Retail and consumer products veteran Brian Cornell was named chairman and CEO at Target to fill two of the three roles previously held by the company’s former top executive Gregg Steinhafel.

July 23, 2014

Exterior building products manufacturer Ply Gem appointed Eric Spence senior VP sales and marketing for the Ply Gem Windows group.

In this newly created role, Spence is responsible for expanding Ply Gem Windows’ sales and marketing efforts, aligning the two functions under one common structure. He reports to Ply Gem Windows president Art Steinhafel, and is located at the Ply Gem corporate and windows group headquarters in Cary, North Carolina. 

July 18, 2014

Michael H. McGarry, currently executive VP of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania-based PPG Industries, has been appointed to the post of chief operating officer.

McGarry will have executive oversight responsibility for all of PPGs strategic business units and operating regions and for the information technology (IT), environment, health and safety (EH&S), and purchasing functions. He will remain based at PPGs global headquarters in Pittsburgh and will continue to report to Chairman and CEO Charles E. Bunch.