Each year, the Woodworking Machinery Industry Association recognizes extraordinary companies and individuals with its Wooden Globe awards. They were presented to educator Joe Davis, cabinet manufacturer Dura Supreme, and closet cabinet manufacturer Lazy Lee USA at the Wood Industry Conference in May.
“WMIA’s annual Wooden Globe Awards are one of the association’s most important programs,” says WMIA president and CEO Larry Hoffer. “The winners of the Commitment to Excellence through Technology and Innovator of the Year Awards are strong testaments to the sheer value of investing in new equipment and new technology, and partnering with WMIA members to identify new solutions, can bring to a company’s bottom line.
“Equally as important, the Educator of the Year hails the often-unsung heroes helping to bring a whole new generation into the industry, which is vital at a time when skilled workers are so needed.”
Dura Supreme, based in Howard Lake, Minn., has invested heavily in new equipment and technology, while managing to maintain profitability through the Great Recession, according to the WMIA.
“With Dura being privately held and managed, the company was able to stay profitable throughout the downturn, and with no debt service, found itself in a unique situation. They had capital to spend. They began to upgrade their equipment at a capital level that no one in our industry was doing at the time and they are continuing this level of investment to this date. Dura wasn’t buying its first CNC or optimizer; it has made a policy of replacing good machinery with the newest, most efficient models on the market, year after year,” the WMIA said in a statement.
Innovator of the Year
Lazy Lee of Cedar City, Utah, has developed a rotating storage unit that can be shipped flat packed and assembled on site by two people without screws or glue. The units use Lockdowel fasteners and are more than 7’ tall.
“The company’s patent-pending Rota bearing system enables storage units to rotate smoothly, quietly and safely with a load-bearing capacity of over 8,000 pounds. The patent-pending Lazy Lee H-on-a-Circle design needs no central pivot point, and when fastened to the floor, Lazy Lee units don’t even need a stabilizing pin. Designed with Lockdowel fastening, each Lazy Lee creation can be snapped and locked together without screws, without glue and without extra hardware. Lazy Lee’s are assembled where they will be used and a 7.8’ by 3.5’ completed spinning cabinet can be assembled in about an hour,” according to the WMIA.
Educator of the Year
Davis is a high school woodworking teacher at the Dale Jackson Career Center in Lewisville, Texas.
“Davis holds a lifetime Texas Education Agency Career and Technology Education Teacher certification. He is a three-time recipient of the school’s Teacher of the Year award and a WoodLinks’ National Teacher of the Year,” the WMIA reports. “He has been on the National Education Team for 14 years and currently serves as chairman for the national cabinetmaking contests for the student leadership organization SkillsUSA. Davis is one of only two WoodLinks teachers in the state of Texas that can certify students with a national woodworking certification.”
For more, visit www.wmia.org.
This article originally appeared in the July 2018 issue.