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Bringing together senior sales and marketing executives in the home improvement manufacturing industry since 1971.

What is HMC?

The Hardware Marketing Council (HMC) was organized in 1971 by a handful of individuals representing leading manufacturers who were fulfilling the product requirements of home improvement retailers. The organization’s “founding fathers” included senior sales and marketing executives from leading name brand companies.

Today, the organization gathers twice a year to hear industry leaders speak on relevant topics so members keep pace with the rapidly changing trends within the industry. Some of the past speakers include:

  • Darrin Clark, VP of Pro Services, Lowe’s
  • Mark Veeder, VP Online Merchandising, The Home Depot
  • Steve Barbarick, President and CMO, Tractor Supply Company
  • John Hartmann, President and CEO, True Value
  • Mark Herbek, Executive Director and Partner, Cleveland Research
  • Dan Tratensek, Executive VP and Publisher, North American Retail Hardware Association
  • John Surane, VP of Merchandising, Marketing and Sales, Ace Hardware
  • Steve Markley, VP of Merchandising, Do it Best


HMC hosts two annual events giving members insights from notable industry figures, motivational speakers and industry experts on a wide range of topics including management skills, line reviews, team building, leadership and trends affecting the industry.


With more than 100 companies represented, HMC provides members multiple opportunities to connect, share ideas and learn practices at its two annual events, which include cocktail receptions, dinners, golf outings and more.


HMC members are able to build a large network of peers to connect with throughout the year. HMC represents the home improvement industry and its goal is to provide members an outlet to learn from each other and ensure a strong future for the industry.

Who belongs to HMC?

HMC members represent more than 100 companies including large and small manufacturing brands in the home improvement industry. Many of its founding companies are still active today.


HMC is made up of senior sales and marketing executives representing leading manufacturers that serve the material and equipment needs of the home improvement industry. Membership is granted exclusively to individuals who meet the criteria for membership including the individual’s company responsibilities, personal stature within the industry and ability to contribute to group discussion. New members are sponsored by existing members and are accepted into membership by a vote. HMC also employs and supports anti-trust protocol and have counsel in attendance to ensure we protect our members accordingly.

Membership benefits include:

  • an invitation to two annual meetings with an excellent line-up of industry experts and speakers and endless networking opportunities
  • follow leading indicators in the industry
  • identify and quantify customer base
  • monitor distribution trends in the industry
  • analysis of new distribution trends
  • access to a robust member directory of leading manufacturers

Why am I a member?

Hear from a few current members about how HMC has been beneficial for them in their businesses and professional careers.

“HMC has exposed me to on-trend industry information from top retail executives and experts on the state-of-the retail environment. All of the information is relevant and helpful for me and my company to grow our business.”

-Wendy Sender,
Director of Sales, Blue Rhino

“A true bond is formed with this trusted network of industry leaders, many of whom are also willing to support and share their wisdom outside of the meetings. This opportunity wouldn’t be available to many small companies if they hadn’t invested the time to participate. ”

-Dee Willoughby,
President, Fulton Corporation

“Members consist of an exclusive group of industry leaders with the opportunity to network in a small and intimate setting. This is our industry’s best option for networking with fellow vendors and our largest customer’s leaders.”

-Bill Lown, VP Retail Division & Business Development, The Stow Company

Annual Meetings

HMC hosts two annual meetings in the Spring and Winter to bring members together to connect, share ideas and gain insights from industry veterans and experts.

May 28-30, 2019
Spring 2019 Meeting

Washington Duke Inn & Golf Club
Durham, NC

December 3-5, 2019
Winter 2019 Meeting

Saddlebrook Resort
Wesley Chapel, Florida

Upcoming Meeting: December 3-5, 2019

Winter 2019 Meeting

Saddlebrook Resort
Wesley Chapel, FL

Registration Information

The HMC winter meeting is your chance to connect with other sales and marketing professionals, share your ideas and learn about the trends influencing our industry. Registration will open soon.

Winter 2019 Speakers

Information coming soon!

Coming soon!

Saddlebrook Resort

5700 Saddlebrook Way
Wesley Chapel, FL 33543

Past Meeting: May 28-30, 2019

Spring 2019 Meeting

Washington Duke Inn & Golf Club
Durham, NC

Meeting Highlights

Five Board of Directors were elected for a two year term: Anthony Antol, Ryan DeArment, Brian Hippler, Bill Lown and Mark Youngren.
One Board of Directors member was elected for a one year term: Eliot Beal.
A special thanks to the outgoing Board of Directors who are: Matt Hete and Craig Kapp.
Bill Lown will replace Brian Hippler as Program Chair.
Anthony Antol will replace Craig Baker as Membership Chair.
The officers elected for the following year are: Jon Easter-President, Wendy Sender-Vice President, Dave Lewis-Secretary and Craig Baker-Treasurer.
The meeting started off on Tuesday evening with a welcome reception.

Speaker Highlights

MARK HERBEK Partner, Executive Director, Home Improvement of Cleveland Research Company discussed a number of topics including: the threat of a economic slowdown, wages outpacing inflation, what tariffs will mean to our economy, inventories getting back in line, freight costs via train, ship and truck and why The Home Depot is beating Lowes.
STEVE SYNNOTT President & CEO of The Pro Group gave an overview of Pro members and their individual strengths, the overall services they offer and how their meetings and events work for the manufacturers.
MITCH JOLLEY CEO of Lancaster/Merit Distribution Group discussed the roller coaster ride Lancaster has been on for the past ten years, their leadership team and the flooring businesses  they recently added.
DENT JOHNSON Vice President, Merchandising of Do it Best Corp. discussed the history of Do it Best, their philosophy on picking up the pace for change, the concerns and opportunities for the future and how to do business with them going forward.
MATT KING CEO AND DAVE GEREN CMO of SFW-discussed where Craftsman stands today at Lowes, their commitment to growing the brand and comp sales.  They further discussed the Kobalt Brand and where it will be positioned with Lowes in the future.