Charlotte welcomes Wood Pro Expo in February 2018
November 15, 2017 | 2:44 pm CST

Charlotte -- The Woodworking Network is bringing its Wood Pro Expo to Charlotte, North Carolina as part of a further expansion of the Wood Pro Expo regional series. Registration is now open for the event, which will be held at the Charlotte Convention Center February 14-16.

"Wood Pro Expo is a regional show for woodworking businesses bringing suppliers and experts together for a localized presentation of equipment and supply solutions," said Tim Fixmer, president/CEO of the Woodworking Network, which owns and operates the events.  "In each city where it takes place, it includes a strong educational program on best practices for shop production, and as well as an expo oriented to equipment and supplies geared to small and medium-size shops, including CNC basics, employee recruitment, finishing, lean manufacturing, business management, software, and shop safety."
Launched in 2014 in Baltimore, the show moved in October 2017 to Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and now moves to Charlotte on February 14-16, 2018. Wood Pro Expo will also return to Lancaster, Pennsylvania in October 2018.
 A dozen conference sessions are planned, forming a core part of the appeal for Wood Pro Expo Charlotte. Industry personalities keynoting the show include FDMC editor Will Sampson; manufacturing integration expert Georg Frey, head of Lignum Consulting; and Gene Wengert, aka "The Wood Dr." along with technical experts drawn from the bountiful resources of the regional suppliers around in the great Charlotte manufacturing hub.
Woodworkers are also encouraged to bring their real live shop production questions and challenges for the experts on hand. 
A morning session on February 14 will be devoted to lean manufacturing.  Mike Roth will present “Jump Starting Your Lean Journey,” a talk that unpacks the 8 steps of value stream management and includes success stories.  Roth is the president, Go-Lean-Six, Training & Consulting Services.  Roth is a Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt with a Lean Manufacturing Certification from the University of Michigan.  Roth provides strategic leadership and "on-site" mentoring for the Go-Lean-Six deployment team.
Roth says his talk will be relevant to woodworking businesses big or small, no matter where they are on their lean journey.  He has over twenty years of experience in the process improvement field with organizations such as Harley-Davidson, Johnson Controls, Mack Trucks, BAE Systems and Volvo.
Another highlight of the conference portion of Wood Pro Expo Charlotte will be a tour of Blum, Inc. in Stanley, N.C.  Tour attendees will learn about the company’s award-winning apprenticeship program as well as Blum’s $16 million expansion that includes $7 million for equipment upgrades for its fully automated warehouse as well as $6 million for new manufacturing technology.
Registration for the Wood Pro Expo Charlotte exhibition is $20 Early Bird Rate ($25 after), including admission to keynote presentations on February 15 and February 16.  Wood Pro Expo February 14 Full Conference Pass is $125 Early Bird Rate ($150 after); $175 for Full Conference Pass + Plant Tours ($200 after); and $75 for Plant Tours only. 
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About the author
Harry Urban

Harry Urban is the retired publisher of the Woodworking Network. Urban spent more than 30 years working in business-to-business publishing, trade shows, and conferences. He has travelled extensively throughout North America and overseas visiting and reporting on major manufacturing facilities and trade shows. In retirement, he's still following the woodworking industry, but he plans to do a lot more fishing.