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AHFA presents awards for environmental excellence

 Barry BranscomeBarry Branscome
 Mike ZimmermanMike Zimmerman
 Barbara NucklesBarbara Nuckles

HIGH POINT — Vaughan-Bassett's Barry Branscome and Sauder Woodworking's Mike Zimmerman have won the American Home Furnishings Alliance's Environmental Leadership Award.

The AHFA presented its 2011 awards, recognizing contributions to environmental and safety in the furniture industry, last month at its Sustainability Summit in Raleigh, N.C.

Branscome, vice president and director of engineering and environmental compliance at Vaughan-Bassett, and Zimmerman, innovation and sustainability scientist at Sauder, joined AHFA officials on trips to Washington, D.C., to meet legislators and regulators, an AHFA release said.

In addition, Branscome serves on the Board of Examiners for AHFA's Enhancing Furniture's Environmental Culture, or EFEC, and Sustainable by Design, or SBD, programs. Both foster continuing environmental improvement.

"AHFA presents these awards because we know we could not effectively advocate for our industry if we didn't have individuals to provide ‘the face' of home furnishings manufacturing to legislators and regulators," said AHFA CEO Andy Counts.

Century Furniture received the Environmental Excellence Award, recognizing exemplary environmental management and stewardship.

All three of Century's domestic manufacturing facilities were registered in the EFEC program in 2009. The company completed SBD registration in 2010, extending sustainable practices to its supply chain.

Roger Jones, Century's vice president of global logistics, also participated on a committee that helped develop and review AHFA's new Responsible Sourcing Manual.

Barbara Nuckles, director of regulatory affairs for Ashley Furniture, received the 2011 Product Safety Leadership Award, a new recognition for leadership in product safety issues.

Bill Perdue, AHFA vice president of regulatory affairs, commended Nuckles for work "above and beyond the normal call of duty," including meetings with officials from the Environmental Protection Agency, Consumer Product Safety Commission and California Air Resources Board.

Assured Products Group was recognized as environmental Supplier of the Year. Its CEO, Jim Chester, was a frequent AHFA webinar presenter in 2011, lending expertise on meeting the challenges of environmental and product safety compliance.

Last year, the AHFA partnered with APG on developing industry-specific compliance advisor software to help companies maintain chain of custody, general conformance and Lacey Act compliance documentation.

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