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2024 Young Retailers

NHPA Recognizes Outstanding Young Retailers in 2024

The North American Hardware and Paint Association (NHPA) has announced its 2024 Young Retailer of the Year honorees, recognizing seven retailers from around North America. 

The Young Retailer of the Year program, now in its 28th year, identifies and promotes the next generation of aspiring independent home improvement, paint and decorating retailers. It recognizes individual achievement by industry retailers age 35 and younger throughout the U.S. and Canada. Honorees are chosen based on a number of criteria, including professional milestones, community engagement, continuing hardware industry education and extracurricular activities.

Sponsors of the 2024 Young Retailer of the Year program include: American Hardware and Lumber Insurance (AHLI), Arrow Fastener, Intertape Polymer Group (IPG), Midwest Fastener, Pony Jorgensen, PPG and The Wooster Brush Company.

“The Young Retailer of the Year program highlights the bright future of the independent channel,” says Scott Wright, executive director of advanced retail education programs for NHPA. “It is a privilege to recognize these outstanding young retailers who are making positive impacts in their operations and communities.”

This year’s honorees are:

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Jared Brown
Director of Business Intelligence, The Aubuchon Company

In the last decade, Jared has dedicated his career to The Aubuchon Company’s growth, which has grown nearly 69% in sales. He’s not only made a major impact on the growth of The Aubuchon Company, his exceptional contributions have set new standards in inventory and replenishment management, retail price optimization and margin management, addressing critical concerns facing many other organizations today.

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Tyler Garrett
President and CEO and Co-Owner, Moscow & Pullman Building Supply

Tyler is a third-generation owner of Moscow and Pullman Building Supply, and joined the company full time in 2010. In 2018, Pat started the ownership transition process with Tyler and his sister Katie, the company’s CFO. In 2019, Tyler became the majority owner. As a testament to Tyler’s management skills and the respect he had earned from the staff, everyone on the team stayed on when Tyler took over.

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Lee Heinrich
Owner, H&R Hardware and Lumber

With an independent spirit and the determination to revitalize a local hardware store, Lee purchased H&R Hardware in Hohenwald, Tennessee, in 2017. Under Heinrich’s leadership, the store experienced a surge in sales, with a 50% increase in the first 18 months and a remarkable 72% growth in 2022. All of the changes Lee implemented in the 8,100-square-foot store had the goal of increasing customer service.

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Jonathan Jasik
General Manager, Sarasota Paint

Born into the paint business, Jonathan grew up in his grandfather’s paint store, and at 17, he became the companywide substitute store manager, where he developed his approach to management. When a position for outside sales became available, Jonathan jumped at the chance to go outside his comfort zone. Continuing with diligence and persistence, he was able to increase territory sales, plan and execute several contractor buying events and plan several product-based sales events.

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Joel Pletch
Store Manager, Walkerton Home Hardware

At just 23 years old, Joel is in the process of purchasing Walkerton Home Hardware. Joel has served as store manager of the business for the last five years, and throughout that time, he has committed to growing the business across departments and in unique ways. With a salesfloor of just 3,300 square feet, Joel has worked diligently over the last five years to grow overall sales and margin by focusing on specific departments and paying attention to the details.

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Isaac Weber
Owner and President, Lugbill Supply Center 

While his path into the home improvement industry didn’t follow a straight path, Isaac has always been focused on growth and achieving his goals. As soon as he bought Lugbill Supply Center, Isaac undertook an ambitious remodel inside and out that would modernize not only Lugbill’s looks but also its product offering, doubling the amount of product Lugbill offered and ensuring he was well-stocked with the right quantities of key categories so he could properly service his pro customers.

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Alexander Ziegenbein
Owner, Gretna Ace Hardware

With a willingness to take risks and a grace-filled heart, at the age of 24 Alex left his role as a salesman for a farm machinery magazine and embarked on his career in home improvement. In January 2014, Alex and his wife Ashley opened Gretna Ace Hardware, and in 2018, they opened up a 12,000-square-foot ground-up store in Springfield, Nebraska. By year three, both stores had reached the ten-year goal, and in 2023, both stores combined had sales of $6.1 million.

About Lindsey Thompson

Lindsey joined the NHPA staff in 2021 as an associate editor for Hardware Retailing magazine. A native of Ohio, Lindsey earned a B.S. in journalism and minors in business and sociology from Ohio University. She loves spending time with her husband, two kids, two cats and one dog, as well as doing DIY projects around the house, going to concerts, boating and cheering on the Cleveland Indians.

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