Kuiken Brothers named 2017 ProDealer of the Year
New York – HBSDealer, the building products and home improvement retailing magazine of Lebhar-Friedman Inc., selected Fair Lawn, New Jersey-based Kuiken Brothers Company as the 2017 Pro Dealer of the Year.
The annual award, selected by editors of HBSDealer in concert with the National Lumber and Building Material Dealers Association, is designed to recognize a high-performance company with a commitment to best practices and the best values of the lumber and building material industry.
Kuiken Brothers is a Garden State institution that has specialized in residential and commercial building materials since 1912. Today the company has eight locations, over 285 employees and provides a range of products and services for building professionals and their homeowner clients, including cabinetry and millwork showrooms, a fleet of over 85 vehicles which include boom and forklift delivery capabilities and on-line tools to simplify business management.
“Kuiken Brothers exemplifies the gold standard for the retail lumber industry,” said Rita Ferris, president of the Northeaster Retail Lumber Association. “From their state-of-the-art technology, cooperative business approach, to their innovative promotions, they are the company to turn to when you are looking for industry best practices.”
The company has played an active role in the NRLA executive committee, as well as the New Jersey Building Material Dealers Association board of directors. They are also a member of Lumbermen’s Merchandising Corporation (LMC).
President Doug Kuiken credits the hard work of the company’s 285 employees for its continued success. He also credits the company’s adherence to its slogan: “Get it right.”
“It’s an honor to be selected for this recognition, and we’re proud of the work of our team,” Kuiken said. “We appreciate it, and at the same time we will continue to dig in and try to get it right every day.”
Fourth generation Kuiken family members are taking on expanded roles at the pro dealer. And the company itself is expanding. Late last year it purchased a 10-acre facility in Newark, N.J., placing the company’s ninth location in a strategically desirable location with rail service, directly on the deepwater port on Newark Bay and a short distance from the Port of Newark and major highways.
Kuiken Brothers will accept the award during the 2017 Pro Dealer Industry Summit, sponsored by the National Lumber and Building Material Dealers Association and HBSDealer. The event is slated for Phoenix, Arizona, Oct. 17-19.
New leadership for LAT
The Lumbermen’s Association of Texas and Louisiana (LAT), announced today that it has selected Mireya Zapata to lead the organization. The LAT advocates for lumber and building material dealers.
Zapata succeeds Barbara Douglas, who in June retired from LAT after 30 years at the helm of the organization.
"Mireya has already, in her short time as director, made huge strides in connecting LAT with current dealers and prospective members in the Texas market,” said Chris Miller, president of the LAT board of directors and VP of operations South & West for U.S. LBM Holdings, LLC. “We are so excited to have such a professional and hardworking director leading the charge for independent lumber dealers."
“LAT has been so key to McCoy’s keeping up with our industry and the special people in the business,” said Brian McCoy, LAT director and president and CEO of McCoy’s Building Supply. “I’m excited for our association to have Mireya’s leadership to guide our future.”
Miller and McCoy, as members of LAT’s executive committee, led the search process. Zapata was most recently with the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, a health care non-profit and the world’s largest funder of MS research, where she served as executive VP. During her 6-year tenure she led the organization’s government affairs, marketing and volunteer engagement functions in a 5-state region. She has 18 years of government affairs experience that includes passing legislation in Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas, representing interest groups in the U.S. Congress and 8 years as Chief of Staff for a member of the Texas House of Representatives.
“I’m very pleased to have this opportunity to lead LAT in building a stronger network of dealers and to move forward our mission of advancing an economy where lumber dealers and builders thrive,” said Zapata, who takes on the title of executive VP for the Austin, Texas-based association. “LAT is also well-positioned to support and connect the next generation of industry leaders.”
Drexel’s expanding culture of happiness
With a mission of simply supplying happiness — “Supply. Happiness.” is the actual slogan — Drexel Building Supply is expanding to Columbus, Wisconsin, where it will soon break ground on its seventh location.
The company plans to open the facility in the spring of 2018, supplying building materials and home design services which include lumber, trusses, cabinets, windows, doors, millwork, decking, roofing, & siding. It will serve the Greater Madison region, and operate with a 60-mile delivery radius.
Drexel was awarded the Milwaukee Journal Top Work Places Award seven years in a row 2011-17, and is known for their unique culture, and for their focus on family approach when it comes to their team.
Drexel owner Joel Fleischman states, “building a new home, or tackling a remodeling project is an important time, for some it’s a once in a lifetime investment, it’s Drexel’s mission to supply happiness throughout each project making it a unique, enjoyable, and exciting experience for our clients.”
Based in Campbellsport, Wisconsin, Drexel serves builders and remodelers, as well as homeowners and DIYers.
The Drexel team is rooted in their team culture, which revolves around their mission to supply happiness and 10 Core Values: Ethics, Respect, Balance, Winning Attitude, Communication, Development, Team Work, Change, Have Fun, and Accountability.
The Columbus location will be led by Team Leader Keith Batenhorst. “We strive to have fun every day, work very hard, and take care of our clients,” he said. “We pride ourselves on our relationships and the happiness we supply to contractors and homeowners.”