November 8, 2017 – LAGUNA BEACH, CA – Robert J. Maricich, CEO of International Market Centers, received the American Home Furnishings Alliance’s highest honor, the Distinguished Service Award, on Friday, November 3, during an awards dinner at the organization’s Annual Meeting here.
The award is conferred annually to an industry executive selected for his or her contributions to the home furnishings industry, to the AHFA and to their local community. Maricich is the 51st recipient of the honor.
Maricich served many years on AHFA’s Board of Directors during his 11-year tenure as president and CEO of Hickory, N.C.-based Century Furniture Industries. He was elected chairman of the AHFA Board in 2006. He remained involved in the Alliance as a supplier member when he became president and CEO of World Market Center Las Vegas in January 2008. He oversaw the trade complex’s expansion as the premier home furnishings market in the western United States.
Maricich was instrumental in envisioning and developing the strategy for the creation of International Market Centers, L.P., and for raising over $1 billion to fund the purchase in May 2011 of the International Home Furnishings Center, Showplace and the Market Square properties in High Point and merging them with World Market Center Las Vegas to form the world’s largest operator of showroom space for the furnishings, home décor and gift industries. IMC now encompasses over 11.7 million square feet of exhibition space.
Prior to joining Century, Maricich was president and CEO of American Drew and American of Martinsville, at that time both divisions of LADD Furniture, and before that was an executive with Flexsteel Industries where he founded the contract division. Maricich now serves on Flexsteel’s Board of Directors.
In presenting the Distinguished Service Award, Ethan Allen Chairman, CEO and President Farooq Kathwari noted Maricich’s “inimitable ability to communicate his vision and ideas in a way that people around him believe in his strategy and want to be a part of the team that makes a difference.” This leadership has resulted in an established record of building companies into internationally respected brands.
“A highly regarded leader, he is respected for making the good better and the best exceptional,” said Kathwari.
While Maricich is widely respected for his innovative leadership and exceptional business acumen, he also is dedicated to giving back to the industry and to the wider community.
In 2000, he was appointed by the Governor of North Carolina to be chairman of North Carolina Furniture Export Council, a position he held until 2004. Maricich currently sits on the executive committee for the City of Hope’s Home Furnishings Group, and on the board of directors for Opportunity Village, a Las Vegas-based charity dedicated to serving the disabled. He was honored in 2013 by the Tri-State Home Furnishings Association as their Man of the Year and was recently honored with the American Heritage Award by the Anti-Defamation League.
Kathwari commended Maricich for his ability to balance hard work with devotion to his family and his lifelong passion for fly-fishing. He and his wife, Andrea, have three grown sons.