The 2014 Annual Conference is moving fast upon us and I am well aware that my tenure as HARDI president will end on Dec. 10. I would like to thank all HARDI members for allowing me to serve as a HARDI officer. This has been an eye-opening year for me and I have learned so much from talking with our members from all corners of North America.

For those who have not registered for HARDI’s 2013 Annual Conference, I strongly encourage you to take part in this event. While many folks may not pay too much attention to the themes of our annual meetings and conferences, I ask that you stop for a moment and think about the theme of HARDI’s 2013 Annual Conference. We believe that distributors can be a driver of demand throughout the supply chain, adding value to partnerships with suppliers and customers. This year is the first year ever that a landmark research project is going to reveal the results of an in-depth analysis on distributors’ roles in demand creation. This insight may transform the course of your business and will undoubtedly provide value to you and the industry as a whole.

Further, I certainly do not think that success happens by coincidence. In our industry, especially in the economic climate and uncertainty that we have endured over the last few years, those who continue to succeed do so as a result of hard work and strategic decisions made with careful consideration.

For G.W. Berkheimer, one of those strategic decisions has been our engagement with HARDI. We have found great value in our ability to utilize HARDI to help gauge our performance and operations with other HARDI members throughout North America. More specifically, we view HARDI’s Annual Conference as an opportunity for our team to learn, share, and develop ideas that will be a driver of success in years to come. By attending this year’s Annual Conference and taking advantage of all of the opportunities that are available to you over four days in Phoenix, I believe you will be making a proactive decision to improve yourself, your business, and our industry.

The HARDI leadership has taken the theme of this conference very seriously and has worked extremely diligently to develop programs and agendas which will give attendees a significant advantage over competitors. In fact, I believe that the speakers and programming for this conference are the finest that I can recall and I know that you will find value in each session.

I want to thank and recognize the HARDI staff, board of directors, and our committee and council leaders for all of the hard work that they have undertaken to ensure that this year’s meeting will be a success, and I would like to thank you again for allowing me to serve as HARDI president.

I look forward to seeing you in Phoenix,

 Brian Cobble