Furniture First adds 3 new board members

MIDDLETOWN, Pa. — Matt Huber of Belfort Furniture in Dulles, Virginia; John Lott of Lott’s Furniture in Waycross, Georgia; and Michael Fiacco of Old Brick Furniture in Albany, New York, will join the board of directors of Furniture First in the second quarter of this year.

The terms will officially begin at the general membership meeting that will be held in conjunction with the national buying group’s annual symposium in Arlington, Texas, May 13-15. The three will be assuming the positions of three term-limited board members: Mike Albert of Pilgrim Furniture City in Southington, Connecticut, Lisa Hawkins of Room to Room Furniture in Tupelo, Mississippi, and Matt Meusey of Wagner’s Home Furnishings in Missoula, Montana.

Chris Cooley remains on the board of directors. Mike Albert will be rotating off the board of directors.

John Lott said of his election to the board, “I am thankful for the opportunity and looking forward to serving on the board of directors for Furniture First. There are talented leaders within Furniture First, and I feel honored to serve with fellow board members.”

“Our newest board members really reflect the diverse models of our membership,” said Andrew Kauffman, chief executive officer of Furniture First. “We have members with high-volume single-store operations, retailers with multi-unit chains over large territories, and multi-generation store owners focused on their communities. When they work together for the good of all, they have a greater impact for each approach.”

The announcement comes after Furniture First’s fourth owners’ performance group completed their first meeting. The inaugural meeting was hosted by member Marty Rae’s of Lexington located in Lexington, South Carolina. Other stores that presently make up the Delta Group include Esprit Décor Home Furnishings, Lake Country Furniture, Vinson Fine Furniture and Wendell’s Furniture.

Attendee Phil Vinson, of Vinson Fine Furniture in Columbus, Ohio, said of the experience, “We gained more insight for our furniture store in this one meeting than we ever imagined. Not only was our facilitator helpful in guiding us, but he also brought a lot of experience to the table with his years of store ownership. I look forward to our monthly Zoom meetings and our next in-person meeting. Our staff is excited with all the improvements we are already discussing to put into place.”

Furniture First’s owners’ performance groups meet in-person three times a year. Key functions of the group are to share best ideas and practices, financial results and strategic planning, all done with a high level of trust and accountability. Weekly performance comparisons and monthly follow-ups allow members to make timely decisions. Forty-two Furniture First members belong to one of the buying group’s owners’ performance group.

“The furniture industry is becoming more challenging daily, and group membership is more important now than ever. Only another owner can appreciate the challenges you face each day and provide insights on ways to help achieve the goals of being a more successful business,” said Mike Kordik, Furniture First’s director of member engagement and the facilitator of the owners’ groups. 

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