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Furniture/Today Leadership Conference draws record attendance

350 attend last week's event in Naples, Fla.
 Furniture/Today’s Ray Allegrezza, left, and Dwayne Welch, right, of Hickory Springs Mfg. present the Retailer of the Year award to the management team of Atlanta-based Havertys. Havertys President and CEO Clarence Smith was unable to attend.Furniture/Today’s Ray Allegrezza, left, and Dwayne Welch, right, of Hickory Springs Mfg. present the Retailer of the Year award to the management team of Atlanta-based Havertys. Havertys President and CEO Clarence Smith was unable to attend.
 Furniture/Today’s Ray Allegrezza, left, and Dwayne Welch of awards and dinner sponsor Hickory Springs Mfg., present the Supplier of the Year award to Ron and Todd Wanek of Ashley Furniture Inds.Furniture/Today’s Ray Allegrezza, left, and Dwayne Welch of awards and dinner sponsor Hickory Springs Mfg., present the Supplier of the Year award to Ron and Todd Wanek of Ashley Furniture Inds.
 Attendees listen to presentations at the Furniture/Today Leadership Conference. A record crowd of 350 attended the event.Attendees listen to presentations at the Furniture/Today Leadership Conference. A record crowd of 350 attended the event.

NAPLES, Fla. — A record crowd of 350 industry executives attended the 14th annual Furniture/Today Leadership Conference here last week, watching and taking part in a series of presentations around the theme, "Game Changer: Are You in the Game?"

Attendees also saluted the newspaper's Supplier of the Year, Ashley Furniture Inds., and Retailer of the Year, Atlanta-based Havertys. Leaders of both companies were honored at the annual Awards Dinner.

The event, held at the Ritz-Carlton Beach Resort here, opened with optional golf and a store tour of the new Clive Daniel Home in Naples, operated by Clive and Dan Lubner in a former Robb & Stucky location.

Ray Allegrezza, Furniture/Today editor in chief, welcomed the conference audience at the kickoff of a series of presentations, including panel discussions featuring several innovative retailers who have successfully managed their companies through the economic downturn.

"The fact that this year's conference attracted 350 industry leaders, including close to 100 leading retailers, confirmed that this year's theme was on target to our attendees," Allegrezza said.

Complete coverage of the conference will appear in the Dec. 12 print issue of Furniture/Today. We'll also be posting some video interviews from the event on our website at www.furnituretoday.com.

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