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Robert H. Spilman Jr. Receives Distinguished Service Award from AHFA

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The American Home Furnishings Alliance announced that it has named Robert H. Spilman Jr., president and chief executive officer of Bassett Furniture Inds., Bassett, Va., the 2008 recipient of its highest honor, the Distinguished Service Award. The award was presented at a gala awards dinner Nov. 21, as part of the organization’s Annual Meeting in Chicago. Spilman is the fourth generation in one of the South’s original furniture families. He spent the summers of his youth working in furniture factories. After graduating from Vanderbilt University in 1978, Spilman joined Finger Furniture Company in Houston, Texas, where he was exposed to all aspects of furniture retailing – warehousing, credit, store management and buying. In 1984, Spilman moved to Hickory, N.C., and joined Bassett Upholstery Division as national sales manager. Two years later, he was promoted to vice president/general manager of Bassett’s promotional division, Impact. In January 1994, he was named executive vice president of Bassett. He has been president and chief executive officer since 2000, and is a member of the company’s Board of Directors. The AHFA award cited Spilman for being a “leader, visionary, confidant, tireless worker and advocate for effective change in his beloved furniture industry.” “Known as an executive who delegates and empowers his colleagues, he also pays close attention to the details every day,” said Spilman’s uncle, John D. Bassett III, in presenting the award. Bassett is chairman and CEO of Vaughan-Bassett Furniture in Galax, Va. Spilman was a member of AHFA’s Board of Directors from 1999-2005 and served as president in 2004. He also serves on the Board of Directors of First Union National Bank in Henry County, Va. The American Home Furnishings Alliance – located in High Point, N.C., and Washington, D.C. – is the largest association of home furnishings companies in the world and represents more than 240 leading furniture manufacturers and distributors, plus about 200 suppliers to the furniture industry worldwide.

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