Featuring a recurring focus on growth, event attendees celebrated a sixth straight year of record sales growth, which was double that of the industry average. Speakers also noted a long list of achievements over the past year including the opening of a fourth regional distribution center in Jacksonville, FL, initiating construction on a fifth such facility in Las Vegas, and the hiring of three newly created regional account managers. Having reached a landmark $1 billion in sales last year, the company has a stated goal of attaining $2 billion in sales by 2010.
Presentations made at the annual meeting included Member awards, Store awards and Vendor awards. The Member of the Year award went to Denver, CO, while the Mentor award recognized Garry Fishman of Johnstone Ventura, CA, for his counsel to new members.
The John M. Shank Award is given to an owner who has been a member for less than five years and best demonstrates the entrepreneurial spirit of cooperative founder John Shank. One of the Cooperative’s most esteemed honors, this years’ Shank Award was presented to Jess Hill, owner of the Springfield, MA, store. Another prestigious and rarely presented honor, Johnstone’s “Leadership Award,” recognized the unselfish dedication, guidance and cooperative service contributions of Larry Wines (St. Louis, MO, group). This award has been presented only eight other times in company history. Supplier awards paid tribute to the vendor partners who play such a vital role in Johnstone’s success. Fujitsu was honored with the “Sales and Marketing Award,” given to the vendor exhibiting superior sales growth and marketing support. Johnstone’s most prestigious vendor honor, the “Supplier of the Year Award,” was presented to President and CEO Chuck Carroll of Goodman Manufacturing. Goodman has doubled its sales to Johnstone over just the last three years.