Robin Wilson is an eco-friendly interior designer and a lifestyle brand with products sold at Bed Bath & Beyond.com and is the first woman with a branded line of custom kitchen & bath cabinetry sold by over 500 dealers nationwide. She is an ambassador to the Asthma & Allergy Foundation of America and author of Kennedy Green House (Greenleaf, 2010). She regularly appears on the speakers circuit, on television and offers commentary in print on wellness, sustainability and allergy & asthma issues.
Norman Coley is President of LEE Industries, a leader in the furniture industry. Norman joined the family owned company in 1987 as a Sales Representative. After seven years of selling innovatively styled, high quality upholstery, he entered the manufacturing side of the business. As Vice-President of Manufacturing, Norman streamlined the manufacturing processes at LEE. In 2000, Norman was appointed to President of LEE Industries. With Norman’s leadership, LEE has maintained its status as a pioneer in producing furniture that is long lasting and contains uncompromised quality.
Amy Smith is Senior Program Officer with World Wildlife Fund’s Global Forest and Trade Network-North America (GFTN-NA) program. She assists companies in understanding the sources of their forest products, implementing responsible sourcing policies, increasing the amount of credibly certified products in their supply chain, and in making market linkages between wood buyers and suppliers that share a commitment to responsible forestry and trade.
Gerry Cooklin founded the Sustainable Furnishings Council to transform the home furnishings industry and to help preserve the world’s forests. He is founder and CEO of South Cone, a FSC certified residential furniture manufacturer, and Peruvian non-profit organization PaTS, which promotes sustainable forestry and encourages community members to become artisans and business people to create a sustainable living for their families.
Jeff is a founding Board Member and past President of the Sustainable Furnishings Council. A published writer on sustainability, he has been keynote speaker for numerous professional and academic organizations including High Point Market, Las Vegas Market, ASID, ADAC, SCAD, and NYSID. Jeff is also a Senior Partner in JB Training Solutions, a leading management skills training company, and sole owner of PROaction Marketing Group, a marketing services company based in Austin, TX working with home furnishings wholesalers and retailers across the country.
In 1989, Mitchell Gold and his business partner, Bob Williams, created a furniture company in Taylorsville, North Carolina (www.mgbwhome.com). Today, Gold and Williams head a nationally recognized company with over 750 employees and a 700,000-sq.-ft. factory with a family friendly-work environment that includes an on-site not-for-profit daycare center (the first of its kind in the residential furniture industry).
Kathryn is Executive Director of Dovetail Partners, a non-profit environmental organization that provides authoritative information about the impacts and trade-offs of environmental decisions, including consumption choices, land use, and policy alternatives. Kathryn has worked on development and forest management issues in a range of roles. Kathryn is also an experienced forest certification lead auditor. Kathryn has been a leader within the forestry community in the Upper Midwest through for many years. She holds a B.S.
Peggy Burns, Queen Bee of Circle Furniture, oversees the buying of all product lines as well as managing the design direction for the company's stores. Known for promoting bold color and rich textures in the store offerings, Peggy has helped to set Circle Furniture apart from its competitors with its strong merchandising of quality furniture and decorative accessories. Peggy serves on numerous boards of directors, regionally and nationally. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in Communications from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
Greg Harden is CEO and President of the Harden Furniture Co., the oldest manufacturer of residential and commercial furnishings in North America. Located in Northern New York State, Harden was at the forefront of environmental conservation long before most of its industry peers. Harden’s manufacturing process begins with sustainable forestry and the company’s procurement operations are certified by the SFI program.
Steve Freeman is Vendor Resource Manager of Room & Board where he has contributed to the environmentally-focused philosophies and practices of the company in his 27-year career. As a lifelong Minnesota resident, he has been inspired to preserve the environment. Freeman enjoys canoeing in Northern Minnesota, showing his Keeshond dogs at AKC shows with his wife, and working on his 5 acres of woodland.