Denver (August 10, 2015) – Successfully running a hardware store is no easy task. However, a few independent retailers who have proven they have what it takes to achieve retail success are now being honored by the Denver-based PRO Group with its annual Paul L. Cosgrave Memorial and PRO Hardware Retailer of the Year awards.
This year, PRO Group recognized Nunda PRO Lumber & Hardware as the 2015 Paul L. Cosgrave Memorial Award winner and Juniata PRO Lumber & Supply as the Cosgrave Award finalist. The company also honored Welches Mountain Building Supply & PRO Hardware as a 2014 PRO Retailer of the Year.
Named after the PRO Group founder, the Cosgrave Award is presented annually to the top PRO Hardware retailer nationwide that is fully committed to the principles and effective hardware merchandising that PRO Hardware founder Paul L. Cosgrave developed over 60 years ago.
“These annual awards are presented to retailers that are among the best of PRO dealers,” says Shari Kalbach, managing director for PRO Group. “These independent retailers are at the top based on sales, merchandising, inventory management, PRO identification and much more. We’re so proud to be associated with all of these businesses.”
Paul L. Cosgrave Memorial Award Winner
Nunda PRO Lumber & Hardware
Nunda, New York
Every day, dozens of customers circulate through Nunda PRO Lumber & Hardware. However, the store is much more than a busy home town retailer. As the heart of the Nunda, New York community, owner Dana Russell and vice president Larry Mallaber uphold the store as the town’s solution center.
Maintaining an intensive customer-first philosophy, Nunda PRO keeps a fresh product assortment catered to customer needs and requests. Working toward the goal of being on the leading edge of product selection, Mallaber regularly reviews his mix of goods and often adds new and innovative items.
“They don’t sit on their laurels; they’re always looking for new products,” says Kirk Komendat, regional manager for The Bostwick-Braun Company, Nunda’s PRO distributor. “Their dedication to PRO drives their sales. Larry challenges me all the time and he’s not afraid to try new products and look for different niches.”
“Every day the store evolves,” Russell says. “We always try to be at the forefront because that’s what customers want to see.”
The store also offers “Community Corner,” a special section set aside to sell locally made products such as honey and syrup from local farms and nut butters from a local company. Above all else, the staff at Nunda PRO Lumber & Hardware focuses on helping customers inside the store and out in the community.
Nunda PRO helped build the town’s new 9,000 square foot volunteer fire station, donating discounted building materials to the project. The company has also made a huge impact through its support of and donations to a local school’s alternative education program that teaches carpentry and masonry skills to students at risk of dropping out of school. The program has lowered the dropout rate dramatically. Nunda PRO also sponsors many area sports leagues and community organizations.
Paul L. Cosgrave Memorial Award Finalist
Juniata PRO Lumber & Supply
New Bloomfield, Pennsylvania
Motivated by the success of the company’s main store location, owners of Juniata PRO Lumber & Supply set a goal to grow their second location in New Bloomfield, Pennsylvania. A few years later, a redesign and updated product assortment have paved the road for great accomplishments for the business.
With a new layout facilitating consumer self-shopping at the New Bloomfield location, management at Juniata PRO is growing do-it-yourself sales. They are also dedicated to contractor business and maintaining the best assortment of lumber and building supplies in the area. The 3,000 square foot store offers all of the core departments of interest to customers. It also includes the “Today’s Design House” retail concept, which shows design items such as lighting, faucets, locksets and hardware in matching finishes in one place so they’re easy to match.
The store has a dependable and accurate staff with an overarching goal to “do it right the first time”.
“Juniata PRO Lumber & Supply works to satisfy customer needs regardless of what is required,” says Richard Snowden, senior vice president of marketing for Wallace Hardware, Juniata’s PRO distributor. “They have been part of the PRO Program for 20 plus years and maintain assortments that satisfy customers’ needs and are willing to add items to their inventory to accomplish it.”
Juniata PRO is a successful business thanks to its staff’s hard work and dedication to customer service. That success would not have been possible without the support of PRO Hardware and Wallace Hardware. The store’s owners selected PRO Hardware to assist the company in store design, layout and product selection for both stores. When Wallace Hardware purchased Juniata’s original PRO distributor, Wallace was able to assist in making continual improvements to the store.
“Wallace was very involved with the remodel of the New Bloomfield store and the place is really looking good thanks to their help,” says Joe Rhine, general manager of Juniata PRO Lumber & Supply. “The people at Wallace are nice and fun to work with and they’re friends as well as business partners. It feels wonderful to have been chosen by them as the PRO retailer of the year. It’s really an honor.”
PRO Hardware Retailer of the Year
Welches Mountain Building Supply & PRO Hardware
Welches Mountain Building Supply & PRO Hardware in Welches, Oregon, is the 2014 PRO Hardware Retailer of the Year for Horizon Distribution, Inc. Selected due to the store’s outstanding level of customer service and commitment to PRO Programs, the store is described by Horizon Distribution regional sales manager, Paul Needham, as “a perfect example of a well-run small town hardware store.” Owners Bill and Rochelle Simmonds apply the golden rule to their business, listening closely to the customer and always putting their needs first.
“What separates them from the rest of the pack is the fact that they treat customers so well,” says Mike Dawson, Horizon Distribution’s retail division manager. “I remember a few years ago; a customer who’d had a disaster in her home came in needing a pair of boots and one of the employees gave the customer the boots off of her own feet to make sure she was taken care of. That’s the spirit of the store.”
“We try to go above and beyond with customer service and we make it a point to try to wow our customers,” Rochelle Simmonds says. “It’s really nice to be recognized and feels good to know that we’re doing something right.”
PRO Group, Inc. (www.pro-group.com) is a multidivisional international merchandising and marketing organization with corporate headquarters in Denver. Its operating units include PRO Hardware, GardenMaster, FARM MART and GOLDEN-LINK. The company’s purchasing power exceeds $3 billion through its member distributors.
For More Information Contact:
Shari Kalbach, PRO Group, Inc.
Note to media: Digital photographs available upon request. Contact:
Heather Carroll, PRO Group, Inc.