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IHFRA To Hold Presidential Gala and Awards Ceremony In High Point on Saturday, April 5, 2008.

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The International Home Furnishings Representatives Association announced that it will hold its 74th annual Presidential Gala and Awards Ceremony at the IHFC Club on Saturday, April 5, 2008. Highlighting the evening will be the installation of the 2008 – 2009 IHFRA officers. Jim Craven CHR will be installed as the 70th IHFRA President. Jim is currently President of the Tennessee Furniture Travelers and has been a member of this club since 1991. Craven is joined on the IHFRA Executive Committee by 1st Vice President Ed Myers of Tri-State Home Furnishings Association, 2nd Vice President Sandy Dant CHR of Home Furnishings Representatives Guild of Southern California, Secretary/Treasurer Mark Scharff CHR of Metropolitan Furniture Association of New Jersey and Chairman of the Board Richard Gillispie CHR of the Virginia/Carolinas Home Furnishings Representatives Association. In addition to the installation of officers, the Rudy Steltemeier Award for 2008 will be presented to Paula Shoemaker CHR of the SouthWest Ohio Home Furnishings Representatives Association. This award is presented to an IHFRA member in good standing who has demonstrated the qualities of outstanding service to fellow representatives as exemplified by Rudy Steltemeier. Shoemaker joined the Columbus (Ohio) Chapter of IHFRA in 1981 and completed IHFRA’s education program to become a CHR (Certified Home furnishings Representative) in 1989. She has been active in the SouthWest Ohio Home Furnishings Representatives Association holding every office possible including President in 1992-1993. Paula was co-chair of the IHFRA Conference held in Cincinnati in 1993. Becoming more involved with IHFRA on a national level, Shoemaker “went through the chairs” and become IHFRA’s first female President in 2002. She has participated in all of IHFRA’s lobbying efforts in Washington, worked on membership recruitment and most recently served as Chairman of the Nominating Committee for two consecutive years. Paula serves on the City of Hope Furniture Board and the High Point Market Authority Advisory Committee and is a member of WithIt. Chapter of the Year Award will be presented to the Midwest Furniture Club (formerly Greater Midwest Home Furnishings Association). Membership is the core ingredient in keeping IHFRA and its chapters thriving. The Midwest Furniture Club continually searches for new ways to gain prospective members. In August of 2007 the MFC sponsored a local furniture show to reach out to their small retailers in the area. The retail community was extremely supportive of the event and plans are already underway for another show in the summer of 2008. The Midwest Furniture Club also sponsors the annual Bill Krause Golf Outing in honor of the Century furniture representative in the Chicago area who was killed in an automobile accident a few years ago. The golf outing raises money for a small Chicago school called Alternatives in Education for the Hearing Impaired which Bill’s daughter attended. The Charles B. Costar Dean of IHFRA Award recognizes quality of service and dedication to IHFRA and individual Chapters that has set an outstanding example for others to follow. The Dean of IHFRA Award changed to the Charles B. Costar Dean of IHFRA Award in 2007 to honor Costar, a longtime member and officer of IHFRA for his dedicated service and loyalty to the group. Recipients of this award for 2008 are: - Scott Barten of Florida Home Furnishings Association - Ted Beaver of Virginia/Carolinas Home Furnishings Representatives Association - Peter Erwin of Cleveland Home Furnishings Representatives Association - R. C. Farmer of West Virginia Home Furnishings Representatives Association - Robin Getzoff CHR of Tri-State Home Furnishings Association - Scott Goldberg of SouthWest Ohio Home Furnishings Representatives Association - Lenny Kharitonov CHR of Greater New York Home Furnishings Association - Geoffrey Weed of the Midwest Furniture Club The Presidential Gala and Awards Ceremony will be held April 5, 2008 at the IHFC Club, 11th Floor Green Wing. Cocktail hour begins at 6 p.m. sponsored by the Furniture Transport Group, with dinner beginning at 7 p.m. Contact the IHFRA Office at 336-889-3920 or ihfra@ihfra.org for tickets.

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