American Supply Association Executive Vice President Inge Calderon commented on a published report that a major change in ASA's structure is forthcoming to make manufacturers “equal partners” with distributors in the association.

“Manufacturers already are equal partners within ASA, and have been ever since our Vendor Division was established in the early 1990s,” said Calderon.

She said that six manufacturers are currently represented on the 24-person ASA Board of Directors, and one on the eight-person Executive Committee.

“I think the misunderstanding has come about because some manufacturers have chosen in recent years to take more of an interest in the association's policies and direction, which is their right,” said Calderon. “This has been an evolutionary process, but there has been no great push to change their status. The manufacturers who are deeply involved with ASA understand that its core purpose is to support the distribution channel, as opposed to representing vendor members per se.”