For nearly 100 years, the Association of Woodworking & Furnishings Suppliers (AWFS) has been supporting the woodworking community. During that time, the association has witnessed the most profound boom-and-bust cycles in our country’s history. But through it all, our mission has remained unchanged: We are a nonprofit organization dedicated to securing and strengthening the future of our industry.
For 50 years, the biennial AWFS fair has provided a valuable service by bringing the woodworking industry together in one location. In addition to the countless connections made between suppliers and woodworking professionals, participants benefit through the unparalleled education program. This event is a launching ground for the latest trends, technologies, resources and information to help woodworking businesses improve efficiency, increase profitably and ensure their long-term success.
This year’s event will feature the strongest educational program in our history, with an emphasis on sustainability and multiple strategies for competing in a challenging economy. Participants will also find this to be the most cost-effective show in years, due to lower gas prices, airfares and hotel rates.
While we believe that there are better times ahead, our message is clear and precise. AWFS and its members, exhibitors and sponsors remain dedicated to serving and supporting the woodworking community. This dedication and commitment has been at the very heart of our mission for nearly a century and will not waver, regardless of economic circumstances.
Additionally, as a nonprofit organization, proceeds from the AWFS fair are reinvested back into our industry through legislative and education initiatives. AWFS serves as a voice in Sacramento, Calif., to oppose unfair legislation and influence the enforcement of laws affecting woodworking businesses in California and, potentially, the nation. AWFS also provides scholarships to students involved in woodworking programs in community colleges and universities across the country and has been the single largest contributor to WoodLINKS, a program that is reviving and updating wood technology training in the United States. Through various AWFS initiatives, today’s youth have access to the knowledge and opportunities they need to become tomorrow’s industry leaders and entrepreneurs.
We look forward to seeing you at AWFS Vegas July 15-18 and thank you in advance for your participation. Your support will not only benefit your organization, but will help secure our industry’s future.
AWFS board of directors
This article originally appeared in the March 2009 issue.