Slideshow: Meet the 2022 Wood Industry 40 Under 40
Click on the image to open

This year marks the seventh annual awarding of the 40 Under 40, which celebrates the next generation of industry professionals. Those selected have been recognized for their achievements and innovations in the categories of: productivity, profitability, social good, ingenuity, peer inspiration, product development, and organizational leadership.

Selected from more than 160 submissions, Woodworking Network's 40 Under 40 class includes wood products manufacturers, suppliers, developers, designers, educators, and consultants, from all facets of the woodworking industry, including: cabinetry, furniture, architectural woodwork, closets, retail fixtures, and wood components. The 2022 40 Under 40 is sponsored by PaintLine.

Click on the image to open

The director of Development at Bucci Developments, Troy MacBeth Abromaitis “is committed to taking care of the environment through sustainable community building.” Abromaitis sits on the board of the Canadian Home Builders Association of BC‚ Fraser Valley Home Builders, Home Builders Association of Vancouver, and the National Indigenous Affordable Housing Corp., and is a former director with Built Green Canada. “Troy is a champion of sustainable design and construction practices,” says his nominator.

At the Vancouver, BC-based Bucci, Abromaitis has overseen 34 multi-family development projects totaling $1.6 billion. “Troy believes in building a better world for future generations. He is a natural leader, bringing poise, determination and passion to his endeavors.”

A member of Lytton, one of the communities of the Nlaka'pamux Nation and with deep ties to the Secwepemc and Stó:lō Nations, Abromaitis was the first Indigenous president of the REIBC and is a founding member of the National Indigenous Affordable Housing Corp. Recognized by the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development with the Native American Top 40 under 40 award, he works to “inspire the next generation of Indigenous leaders” and to also “help prepare First Nations to utilize their territories to the benefit their communities and members.”

Outside the industry, 38-year-old Abromaitis is president of a local Rotary Club and on the boards of the West Point Grey Community Association and Stó:lō Business Association; he is also involved with All Nations Outreach, an organization dedicated to helping those with addictions.

Click on the image to open

The manager of Stiles University, Thomas Allott “is motivated by the idea of building up the next generation of woodworkers,” says his nominator. “With the current shortage of skilled labor that has overcome the industry over the last decade, Thomas is driven to build solutions and establish relationships with other resources to make lasting change that results in the strengthening and growth of the next generation of skilled laborers.”

At the accredited university, Allott oversees a team of instructors as well as the development of new and relevant industry curriculums to meet the needs of manufacturing professionals across North America. “Thomas is dedicated to educating our industry and developing the next generation of woodworkers,” adds his nominator. The 30-year-old Allott also sits on the board of directors for The MiLL national training center in Colorado Springs, Colorado, as well as Pittsburgh State University in Kansas, “where he advises on industry trends and technologies to help advance these programs and their students.”

In his six-plus years as manager, “Thomas has impacted thousands of individuals in their journey toward workforce development. Whether through Stiles University or his efforts to support other educational organizations, Thomas is one of the most dedicated individuals in the industry when it comes to supporting the development of manufacturing professionals,” he adds.

Headquartered in Grand Rapids, Michigan, Stiles University is part of Stiles Machinery, a leading provider of wood manufacturing solutions.

Click on the image to open

Aimee Barnett is the owner/operator of Barnett Cabinet Painting, where she also holds the title of lead finisher, while husband Jake handles the refacing jobs. Although the Maple Grove, Minnesota-based cabinetry painting and refacing company has been in business for just a few years, it is already making an impact in the regional marketplace.

Aimee and the company have garnered numerous praises for going “above and beyond” in their customer service. In addition, says her nominator, “Aimee has helped my son, a 24-year-old owner, in developing his business. She has selflessly helped train and teach us how to troubleshoot and freely given of her time to help us and others.”

“As a minority and female owner, she is also paving a way for others in the industry” while networking and sowing the seeds of interest in woodworking as a career to others in the community, adds her nominator. He also notes, “Aimee comes from South Africa. She is motivated by the challenges she faces but also by her love for her family and the trade.”

The 33-year-old Barnett is also active in the community, where “she is a selfless, industrious leader in our local industry.”

Click on the image to open

Phyllis Beyers has “excelled” in her six years with Genesis Products, notes one nominator. “Phyllis brings positive energy and creativity to all aspects of her work, life and volunteer activities that elevates others. She has built trust with customers and suppliers who rely on her to make major product decisions,” he adds.

At the Indiana-based producer of components for the kitchen, retail fixtures, closets and RV industries, Beyers takes her role of product manager to the next level. Among her achievements has been the creation of the Flatlay video series, which she records monthly. “Phyllis is motivated to truly help her customers incorporate the best design trends into their products. [She] looks for excellent solutions that keep her customers winning in very competitive markets,” notes another nominator.

Also motivating the 34-year-old Beyers is community service. She is an active board member for the Bashor Children’s Home and recently spearheaded the Campers for a Cause fundraiser to benefit the organization. “Phyllis put together a community team, worked after hours to secure an RV and redesigned the entire interior. This was then raffled off to raise money for Bashor.

“Phyllis does all this while performing her day-to-day tasks, being our laminate supplier liaison, attending trade shows and managing our design center showroom, while also raising a young family of five. She exemplifies the balance between work, home life and community.”

Click on the image to open

David Biggs is one of the driving forces behind the success of the Woodworking Network, says his nominator. “As Digital Strategy director, he has shepherded the website, social media channels, webinars, event apps, podcasts, audience research, and numerous other digital initiatives over the past decade.” The results of his work are clearly evident in the growth of the company’s online capabilities and statistics.

“At the same time, he always finds the time to help fellow employees with technical issues, virtual meeting software, and general digital problems that come with working from a home office, including championing the adoption of modern productivity and communication solutions for the whole organization.” Headquartered in Iowa, CCI Media, the parent of Woodworking Network, has been a virtual company since its inception.

Building on his leadership experience at the Woodworking Network, “David has stepped up as the WMMA chair of the WMMA/WMIA Joint Technology Committee.

Talented, outside interests include playing guitar and vocals with multiple bands in the Chicagoland area, skiing the Midwest, running a fantasy football website and podcast, and a keen interest in virtual reality and AI. The 39-year-old Biggs’ “strong intellectual curiosity” and “built-in desire for continuous improvement” have proven instrumental in designing and focusing the digital offerings of the Woodworking Network.

Click on the image to open

The president of Manufacturing at M. Bohlke Veneer Corp., Nick Bohlke, 32, is involved in all facets of the Ohio-based business, including log procurement, mill maintenance and lumber sales. “My main reason for nominating Nick is his initiative to continue to bring our company to the forefront through 1) safety, 2) technology, 3) marketing, 4) and human resources,” says his nominator:

“When Nick has a goal, he strives and implements it with the care of, and consideration of, our 200+ MBVC employees.” For example, to improve inter-company communication, “Nick researched the app, organized company-wide meetings and led each group through the implementation. This small example sets him apart as a company and industry, leader. He truly wants these seedlings to grow and bloom, and is inspiring to his teams.”

In an earlier quote, Bohlke noted, ‘My goal is to keep this company going in the right direction, always. I think it's important to realize new trends, new areas of development, continue to be an industry leader, continue to be someone who can give their employees a great place to work, and on top of that, make a good product." He continues to demonstrate that, every day.

“Nick sees our workforce as a team. To continue a successful 50+ years old business is no small feat; to do so requires evolution and adaption, and I feel Nick understands this deeply. He wants his employees to be successful, independent, content/happy, and to work together as a cohesive team for ourselves, for our customers, and for the company and wood industry as a whole.”

Click on the image to open

Andrew Busie is “a person that changes the lives of those that get to know him.” The seventh grade math and middle school carpentry teacher at Philadelphia Elementary School in Tennessee, Busie, 33, also plays an important role in developing a future workforce for the woodworking industry.

“The amount of students I have seen changed by working with Andrew in his workshop has been amazing,” says one of three nominators. “I think Andrew is motivated by helping others and teaching them skills that are much more involved. He genuinely cares about the quality of work and showing his students the right ways to do things.”

Students learn to make a wide range of wood products, including pens, cutting boards, signage and more, many of which are then sold to raise money for various projects. “He loves what he does and is a great influence,” says another nominator. “Children are learning a valuable life skill that will help them be productive adults,” adds a third.

“This impact in our community has been amazing,” the first nominator says. “This [goes beyond] the walls of the school and covers our entire county. The impact Andrew has on those that he teaches and works with is special.” In fact, he adds, “many of Andrew’s students have started their own woodworking businesses.”

In addition to teaching, Busie is the assistant baseball coach for the high school team. He is also the owner/operator of With the Grain, a custom woodworking shop in Loudon, Tennessee.

Click on the image to open

Blair Chandler has an important role in helping woodworking companies finance their future. The manager of Equipment Leasing & Finance at SCM Group, Chandler works with small and large companies to help them acquire new technology to improve their productivity, and ultimately their profitability.

Described as “motivated, driven and professional,” the 31-year-old Chandler began her career at SCM as a marketing assistant and was quickly promoted to various roles before taking the top position in the department. “She is super quick on customer response and our lease customers appreciate her professional approach,” says her nominator.

Chandler shared her knowledge in a recent Woodworking Network podcast with Will Sampson, editorial director. In it, she discusses the pros and cons of various leasing programs, including dollar buyout lease/lease to own and an equipment finance agreement, ROI, and other financial considerations. “I think a lot of customers have realized over the past year or two is this machine is going to make you money,” she notes. “So, once you get the equipment in, and you start seeing all of this cash come in, you’ll be in a comfortable spot. It’s just a smart decision,” Chandler advises.

At the Georgia-based woodworking technology provider, “Blair and [husband Zack Chandler, SCM product manager] have made a life around the woodworking industry, both excelling for the company. They see a great future in woodworking and capital machinery goods and are great references for the business and woodworking industry,” adds her nominator.

Click on the image to open

Nick Cox has been involved in the woodworking industry for most of his life, dating back to when he was a child helping out at his grandparents’ shop. Today, the 39-year-old Cox is president of Webster Door & Millwork, a manufacturer of custom cabinetry, millwork and other wood products based in Louisiana.

Cox took over the family business while still in his 20s, and under his leadership it has grown in size and scope. “In 2016, Nick implemented modern technology to bring this small wood shop into the 21st century,” says his nominator, adding “Nick is a hard worker and is completely genuine. He's always jumping in to help our employees. And he's always researching and finding new methods or tools to streamline our work.”

He is equally hard at work helping the community. “He serves in local politics and wants to see not only his business, but our community grow. Because of Nick's modern thinking, and his love for both this business and his community, we will soon be featured on HGTV Home Town Kickstart.”

She adds, “Nick's main motivation is his love for the family-owned business that he's been a part of for generations. He hopes to pass the business down to one of our three children.”

Click on the image to open

Stephen Fancy is described as motivated, competitive and passionate about woodworking. The 30-year-old owner of Northern Superior Woodworks “is passionate about quality cabinetry, and has big aspirations for the business,” says his nominator. A Red Seal cabinetmaker (Joiner), “he is motivated by wanting to deliver the best product with an outstanding reputation. He doesn't settle for just okay; he wants every job to be one that he would want in his own home.”

Since taking over as owner, “Stephen has adapted to meet the needs of customers and the business. He has invested time in courses and worked with a business coach to improve himself and ensure he is competitive in the industry.” Fancy also expanded the company’s scope, and today the British Columbia-based NSWW specializes in cabinetry for the kitchen, bath, laundry and office, as well as countertops in a variety of materials, for sale to customers in Prince George and the surrounding area.

“Stephen never loses focus of progressing the business. He has a keen eye for design and the calmness to understand customers’ needs,” adds the nominator. “He is often commended for his friendly personality and reaps referrals from his quality and personality.”

She adds, “[Stephen] is always thinking about others, staff included. He wants to ensure that they have job satisfaction.”

Click on the image to open

From sweeping shop floors at 16 to his current position as vice president-Hardwoods and COO at Lewis Cabinet Specialties Group, 35-year-old Matthew Garrett has seen it all in his19 years in the industry.
 “[Matt’s] passion for the industry, and woodworking as a craft, is apparent to all,” says his nominator.

“Because he started as an entry-level shop employee, he knows every position within the shop and willingly steps in to help when they are short-handed. He leads over 140 employees from a place of understanding because he has personally held nearly all of their positions.”

Describing Garrett as both determined and humble, his nominator adds, “[Matt] truly has a love and appreciation for quality woodworking. He will regularly take time after hours, or on the weekends, to help employees with their own personal carpentry projects. He teaches them new techniques, sharing his passion and knowledge for cabinetry and furniture building while growing the same for those he leads.”

Based in Utah, Lewis Cabinet Specialties is a highly-automated custom cabinet manufacturer, serving residential and commercial customers throughout the United States. A one-stop shop, the company manufactures fully customizable and made-to-order cabinet doors and drawer faces cabinet boxes, and dovetail drawer boxes.

Click on the image to open

Laura Gavin is “driven by the need to create.” The owner/designer of Pennsylvania-based Mars Design Studio LLC, she specializes in custom, handcrafted products made from Appalachian hardwoods.

Described as “fearless,” her nominator says, “Laura was born deaf, but overcame the inherent obstacles to become a woman-small business owner.” What started as thank-you and holiday gifts of custom cutting boards and charcuterie boards for customers, has evolved in just four years into a thriving business.

“She now has a complete (flat work) shop, and makes artistic cutting boards, custom tables (12-foot diameter walnut conference table!), and bowls.” as well as live edge slab tables and modern-style furniture, notes her nominator. The 36-year-old Gavin also designs hardscape outdoor spaces, pergolas, privacy screenings and other custom wood structures for her partner Jon Jaskulski’s company, Jon's Landscaping Design & Build, LLC. “Together, they have a reputation for imaginative design and uncompromising quality.”

Gavin has a background in the field of art and graphic design. “Laura is dedicated to her art, but is right at home at the table saw or operating the excavator.” Along with Jon, a custom builder and designer who is also deaf, Gavin serves as a role model for others who are deaf. She is also active in the woman-owned business community in Pittsburgh.

Click on the image to open

Cassey Gibson has been called caring, compassionate, dedicated, a dynamo, and a superhero. Her nomination by 16 people is a testament to the “remarkable on-the-job excellence in quality of work, customer service, teamwork, leadership, and innovation” by the Engagement Specialist at Innergy, a software provider based in Minnesota.

“Woodworking is historically homogenous and a man's purview. Cassey has committed to, and invested in, this industry for over 15 years and has moved the gender needle with both her work at Innergy and AWI [Architectural Woodworking Institute]. She has worked selflessly to improve woodworkers everywhere. She connects thousands of woodworkers across the globe and provides them with valuable education,” says one nominator.

“2021 was a difficult year for our business,” a customer adds. “Our core clients all suffered significant downturns, and this trickled down to us. The most significant element in keeping our business running was the education coordinated by Cassey. Without that education and the tools it provided we would have folded.”

“The impact that Cassey's drive and leadership have had on the industry is exponential,” notes another. “Her passion to educate has had lasting effects on several trade organizations’ standards and has challenged everyone to do better as a community. It has [also] strengthened our position as millworkers in a tough construction industry. She has facilitated the tools needed for us to be more successful as a group which improves all of our bottom lines and allows the beautiful craftsmanship to be highlighted as it deserves to.”

Click on the image to open

Chris Gioia’s “drive, dedication and industry knowledge” have quickly propelled him through the ranks at Montbleau & Associates. The 39-year-old Gioia began his career at the California-based architectural woodwork firm in 2017, starting as project manager, then project executive and vice president, before earning the title of president in 2021.

Under his leadership, the company has grown. “Chris has worked to book Montbleau’s capacity not only for the remainder of 2022, but also for a large portion of 2023. He has also expanded Montbleau’s territory to include the greater Phoenix market. Chris has also been asked to explore additional markets, such as Seattle and Detroit."

“Chris has always emphasized the value of listening to his team to find ways to improve the company’s performance. In turn, he has earned the trust, respect and dedication from his colleagues and employees,” notes his nominator. Statements from team members back this up. “Chris is “always putting the extra effort and time to reach goals. His hard work is contagious and motivates us to do our best.” Another adds, “I have always been motivated by his drive, dependability, creativeness and team-oriented nature. Having worked with him over the years on individual, select projects and having recently been given the opportunity to collaborate with him on running a company, his openness to suggestions, candidness and simple success motivators have always inspired me and others to excel and succeed. His creative and resourceful nature has always provided him with elevated success.”

Click on the image to open

Sean Glessing started his custom woodworking business when he was just 16, and Sean's Cabinetry LLC has been going strong ever since. The 30-year-old Glessing “is the most determined person I have ever met, and his work ethic is unmatched,” says one of six nominators. “He installed his first kitchen when he was 16 years old, and he now has 10 employees.”

The Minnesota-based manufacturer of custom cabinetry and countertops has had its projects showcased in the Artisan Home Tour and Parade of Homes. “Sean's workmanship has always been incredible down to the littlest detail. He brings life to wood and beauty to your space,” says another nominator. “Sean's Cabinetry is respected within the community and beyond its borders,” she adds. “His product development and leadership skills have been an inspiration to watch.

“Many people are motivated by money, success and pride – not Sean. He cares that he does his best. He is always trying harder, is constantly learning new processes and techniques and freely shares his triumphs and defeats enabling/inviting others to learn from his experiences,” says a third nominator.

Hardworking, humble, honest and creative are just a few of the words used to describe the 30-year-old Glessing. “Sean’s passion for woodworking truly embodies the saying: ‘If you love what you do, you will never work a day in your life.’”

Click on the image to open

Since joining Kitchen Cabinet Distributors (KCD) as CEO in 2016, Randy Goldstein has grown the company from a small, regional distributor of RTA cabinetry to one of the largest RTA cabinet companies in the United States, with four distribution centers and more than 500,000 square feet of distribution and manufacturing space.

“Much of Randy’s effort has focused on applying innovative technologies to this largely low-tech segment of the cabinet industry. Advanced ERP and manufacturing systems, a best-in-class planning and procurement platform, and an intuitive, home-grown online customer portal are just some of the ways that KCD has been able to grow so rapidly while ensuring its commitment to service and quality,” says his nominator.

KCD ships cabinets to 99% of the U.S. population within three business days and receives accolades for its service. “Under Randy’s leadership, customer service has become a core focus of KCD’s offering, helping to differentiate the company from most other distributors of RTA cabinetry. Randy has driven this in a number of ways, including a thoughtful approach to inventory management and fulfillment, a well-staffed customer care team equipped with powerful tools to take efficiently care of customer needs, and a unique post-sales service team to ensure that customers receive the attention they deserve even after the sale is complete.”

The 39-year-old Goldstein has been described as motivated and tenacious. “The cabinet industry, and particularly the RTA segment, has faced an incredible amount of change and upheaval in the six years that Randy has been at the helm of KCD. Through it all, he has never stopped moving forward, choosing to tackle obstacles head-on and making sure the company and his team always come out stronger on the other side.”

Click on the image to open

Zach Gosnell is driven to succeed. Since starting Torch Lake Concepts in 2019, the 26-year-old owner/operator has been making waves and drawing raves in Michigan and beyond for his custom furniture, islands and other wood products made from old-growth lumber. “By making generational furniture, an old growth tree's beauty is now enshrined forever in someone's home,” says his nominator.

“He has a love of the environment and a love for what [he does],” she adds. Many of his creations not only reflect that but also pay homage to the company’s namesake. For example, tables and charcuteries will feature live edges and resin, or cast natural resources into resin, “to truly capture the feel of Torch Lake's ocean-like blue water,” the website says.

Gosnell’s passion for the environment is demonstrated in other ways as well, including taking an active role in the planting of new trees in the northern Michigan region, making them available for future generations to use and enjoy. “Zach is on the board of directors for the local conservation district, helping to plant more trees [and donating] trees during their annual tree sale.”

In addition, “Every piece Torch Lake Concepts makes, a portion of it pays for more trees to be planted,” she adds. With support from its suppliers, the company plants about 20,000 trees a year. “We have a strong belief in the conservation of our land, and do everything we can to replenish what we take from it.”

Click on the image to open

Carolyn Guffey leads by example. The vice president of Operations and Marketing at Guffey Systems LLC, Guffey “is determined, passionate and focused. She works tirelessly to motivate and inspire both internal and external partners to always give their best. She actively seeks input and advice through inclusion and respect of a broad range of skills and business acumen of all partners,” says her nominator.

As head of marketing, at the Tennessee-based finishing equipment manufacturer, the 36-year-old Guffey supports brand development and sales growth through strategic marketing planning and initiatives, while also working to “deliver a quality product with an exceptional customer experience,” says her nominator.

“Carolyn also helped manage production and shipping processes on large ongoing projects with Guffey Cabinetry, including finishing large parts for a large wood furniture manufacturer when their off-shore suppliers could not deliver during the pandemic and the supply chain slowed down. Using the Guffey Systems’ PivotLine, they were able to finish and ship up to 12,000 parts a week for months to help maintain the company’s final production orders.”

Her nominator adds, “With all of her responsibilities with Guffey Systems and Guffey Cabinetry, one of her most impressive skills is her commitment to maintaining a healthy work/life balance. She is committed to staying involved in the local schools where the Guffey’s 3 children attend, as well as continuing to be involved and supporting the local community. She is a bright star and an inspiration no matter how long you have been in business.”

Click on the image to open

Neil Harder has experience on both sides of the woodworking industry. The 35-year-old previously owned a custom woodworking shop and was production manager at another, before moving to the supply side and becoming area manager for equipment specialist Felder Group USA.

“Neil became immersed in woodworking and its environmental impacts, ultimately co-founding a company committed to repurposing the millions of acres of dead beetle-kill pine into high-quality furniture,” says his nominator. “Following this entrepreneurial venture Neil became the production manager of another company whose mission was to recycle beetle-kill pine. Between two beetle-kill focused businesses, Neil repurposed over 1 million board feet of dead standing trees that threaten the local Colorado Ecosystem.” As one of the spearheads of this trend, his nominator adds, Harder brought attention – and gave a “repurpose” – to the forestland threat.

At Delaware-based Felder he’s helping to bring attention to another worthy topic – woodworker safety. “Promoting safety, efficiency, and environmentally creative ways to evolve the woodworking industry” motivates Harder, says his nominator. Also, “to bring industrial quality safety systems {such as Felder’s Preventative Contact System] to common and accessible machinery as a standard.”

Harder’s nominator lauds him for his range of expertise, calling him “an expert business and machinery consultant with a considerate approach to building relationships.”

Click on the image to open

Dustin Harris, operations manager, has made an impact since joining Masonite Corp. in September 2020. “At the time we were struggling with production, external quality and morale issues. Within four months, through Dustin's leadership all three areas dramatically improved,” says his nominator.

With regard to production, he adds, “At the time Dustin started, the company was unable to meet its production schedule and we had more than 8,000 late orders. Four months later that was reduced to almost zero. Based on our success, the company asked us to increase our output by approximately 30%.“

Quality at the entry door manufacturer also improved. “Dustin's commitment to quality was a key component of our facility receiving Masonite's External Cost of Quality Award in 2021.” The turnover rate has also been impacted as morale has improved. “Dustin is very employee oriented. I have heard multiple team leads and supervisors tell me how they consider Dustin a mentor.”

After serving in the Marines, Harris, now 38, started in manufacturing on the ground floor and worked himself up as a lead, supervisor and is now the operations manager of a 200-employee facility in Pennsylvania. “Based on his performance at Masonite, Dustin has been classified as ‘High Potential" and is being groomed for greater responsibilities,” his nominator notes. “We are very fortunate and appreciative to have Dustin on our leadership team.”

Masonite is a major door manufacturer with headquarters in Florida.

Click on the image to open

The production manager at Closet America, Ben Heinrich has “integrated two nested routers into our production process, facilitated all of our machine purchases and integrations, been instrumental in blending technology, including screen to machine, into our process, maintains all equipment and manages staff to produce daily required outputs,” says his nominator.

“His scope of responsibility includes managing a factory staff of 19 people, maintaining two beam saws, two edgebanders, two nested-base routers, two CNC machining centers, a dovetail drawer box cell and final job pack out. What makes this all the more impressive is that Ben joined the organization with no woodworking or management experience – as the ‘low man on the totem pole,’ and now runs production.” Based in Maryland, Closet America is a vertically integrated manufacturer and installer of custom home organization systems for closets, home offices, pantries, and garages.

Called reliable, consistent, collaborative and dedicated, the 33-year-old Heinrich “sets and lives up to lofty expectations,” his nominator adds.

“Ben's contribution has been key to Closet America's ability to grow since inception including managing the factory and its output through 43% year over year growth from 2020 to 2021. Without Ben managing output, improving efficiencies, managing staff and maintaining machines that growth would have been impossible.”

Click on the image to open

Elijah Jensen, senior technician, “is key to CNC Factory's design and implementation of new technology,” says a nominator. “For 15 years Elijah has helped CNC Factory machines evolve into one-operator, self-driving, 5G technology. Now he is playing a large role in launching our new CNC Cyber Ops Center – allowing virtual machine operations for non-stop production!” he adds.

“Thanks to Elijah, CNC Factory's productivity is strong,” says another. “He is on top of deadlines while ensuring our product is dependable use after use, year after year, for decades,” she adds. “He listens to the customer's needs and finds the ideal mechanical customizations to benefit them the most - always keeping simplicity and productivity in mind!”

“Elijah loves it when machines he helps to design and build make our customers' businesses profitable. In addition, he loves to inspire other technicians to excellence.”

The 34-year-old Jensen’s “dedication inspires our team,” agrees a third nominator at the California-based technology provider. “He holds an extremely high standard of quality that sets the bar for every CNC machine CNC Factory builds. In addition, his enthusiasm for finding the right solution, or even creating a new feature to solve a customer's production challenge, brings high energy and joy to our work.” The nominator adds, “Elijah always earns commendations from clients when he goes to the field for machine installations. To deliver optimum solutions for a customer or to meet their deadline, he will work over weekends and after hours.”

Click on the image to open

“I’m proud to be a woman in woodworking and advocate for women to join the field,” says Amy Jones, purchasing manager for Bakes & Kropp Fine Cabinetry, a custom manufacturer in Michigan.

Jones has more than 9 years and a wide range of experience in the woodworking industry. She started out as a finisher and quickly moved into the shop floor manager position, before taking on her current role of purchasing manager. “As the company buyer and manager of purchasing, I have been able to network and gain industry knowledge, keeping Bakes and Kropp at the forefront of luxury kitchen product offerings,” she says. As a senior member of staff, Jones has also been involved in several company initiatives including lean manufacturing, new hire training, safety, and production planning.

Described as “hyper-receptive,” Jones continues to look for new ideas and opportunities not only to advance her company, but the industry as a whole. “Keep improving’ is not just one of the values at Bakes and Kropp, it's something that really motivates me. Finding new processes or innovative products has turned into a passion,” she says.

Jones, 38, is equally passionate about being a role model for young women. “I enjoy working with area schools to promote woodworking as a career, speaking in large assemblies and giving shop tours.”

Click on the image to open

The senior vice president of operations at Georgia-based Cosmo Cabinets, Nirvan Khaitan “is a highly intelligent individual who in addition to his operational goals for the company has had to step in and direct our manufacturing production floor,” says one nominator. “His leadership and ingenuity have led to manufacturing improvements and a more engaged management team, and an enhanced employee culture.”

Although just 25, “he is creating a more stable environment in the plant, providing progressive ideas for growth and development, and making a better overall environment for employees,” says another. For example, to represent the diversity of the business, he recently put up a flag of nationality for each employee in the plant. “He is also increasing efficiency through revisions in plant workflow.”

“Nirvan's great leadership skills have positively impacted the team and the company in general. There's an evident high morale of the team and in turn that has increased the production output and has reduced the nonconformities during production. There are lesser downtimes, orders are delivered on time, and sales are skyrocketing thanks to his contribution,” note a third nominator. She adds, “This industry needs young leaders like Nirvan as the aging population is moving onto retirement.”

Khaitan recently became engaged with the KCMA, “where his early contributions have been and will continue to play an important role in the organization.” He also served as the Chapter Chair of YPO Next Generation from 2015 to 2018.

“Nirvan has this love for the wood products manufacturing industry pushing him to go above and beyond in everything that he does,” says a fourth nominator.

Click on the image to open

 Since joining Stevens Industries in 2014, Derek Koester has helped the panel processor and fixtures manufacturer become an industry leader in the casework and millwork market. The 33-year-old is the director of sales – Casework and Millwork Division, for the large manufacturer.

“Derek is a degreed engineer and brings that approach to his sales strategy,” notes his nominator. “Derek has an attention-to-detail skill, which allows him to create processes and procedures for his team to succeed at a higher rate than industry norms.”

He adds, “Derek has been monumental in changing the way that Stevens – and the industry – approaches architecturally specified commercial casework. By modernizing the RFI and substitution approval process, Derek has been successful in tripling sales of our direct sales efforts. Derek has also changed our marketing approach with our dealer entities, creating a massive catalog of project profiles and production examples that our partners can use in their sales efforts.

“Due to these efforts, most of our customers in this market (general contractors and construction managers) utilize Derek as a resource for their upcoming projects. He is constantly helping our customers budget their projects, as well as identifying value-engineered options.”

Headquartered in Illinois, Stevens Industries is a 100% ESOP company.

Click on the image to open

Logan Leinbach made history recently as the country’s first woodwork manufacturing specialist in the newly approved Department of Labor registered apprenticeship/occupation. The STEM-based apprenticeship is a combination of CAD, mechatronics (CNC), cabinet building/panel processing, finishing, estimating, and project management. Leinbach, 23, is the Woodwork Manufacturing Specialist at Burke Architectural Millwork LLC, based in Michigan.

“Not only did Logan help write and gain passage of the apprenticeship, but he was also put in a placeholder apprenticeship during the three years it took for it to get approved and once it was, in the fall of 2019, he officially became the country's first to become enrolled,” says a nominator. Leinbach completed the competency-based apprenticeship in April 2022 and was given a graduation celebration by Schoolcraft College, which also helped get the apprenticeship passed, and attended by state and local dignitaries.

Throughout the process, Leinbach has participated in several articles, panels and webinars on workforce development and the new apprenticeship program. He also has met with K-12 students at various events like the annual MFG Day, and Detroit Design Challenge, and shared his passion for woodworking and the program. “Logan has had and continues to be a peer inspiration and mentor, not only to the other young workers within our organization but within the general public,” she adds.

“Logan has an incredible work ethic, a strong commitment to his goals, and a professional demeanor beyond his years,” says another. “I believe he is motivated by the gratification of doing his best, and also finds reward in how his work reflects positively on his employer.”

Click on the image to open

David Mulkeran loves what he does, and it shows. The 25-year-old is a cabinetmaker at Elliott Woodworking, a Michigan-based manufacturer of drawer boxes, cabinet parts and other components. “He came into the business an eager-to-learn 19-year-old, and in the last six years has only grown in enthusiasm, knowledge and skill as he has taken on more and more responsibility for the success of the business,” says his nominator.

In 2018 for example, Elliott Woodworking expanded its core business of manufacturing dovetailed drawer boxes to cabinet doors and fronts, and then to contract cabinet manufacturing. “This expansion has led to an annual 25% growth in sales. Because of his embrace of lean manufacturing processes David is largely responsible for that success.”

Mulkeran also has been instrumental in the mentoring and training of new employees as they come into the business. “His enthusiasm for the work has been contagious, and they have embraced it for themselves.” Adds his nominator, “he has inspired those who work with him to see a great future in woodworking manufacturing,” especially for those forgoing a college education.

Woodworking is not only a job but a passion for Mulkeran, who also builds reproduction Stickley furniture and other projects in his free time. “David has a true love of the work and the craft involved, and pride in what he produces. At 25 he has already been given an ownership stake in the business to not only retain him, but compensate him for what he brings to it and give him a vision for the future.”

Click on the image to open

The lead designer at Twig Custom Builders LLC, Ivan Nuno, 27, “consistently demonstrates the rare combination of collaborative/creative,” says his nominator. At the Colorado-based digital fabrication shop, “Ivan ensures that each design takes into account not only the intended purpose of the product, but the assembly, installation, joinery, and other elements that factor into the function and quality of each piece. More, his willingness to collaborate is a rare quality and yields a better product because of it.”

In one example, Nuno combined his knowledge of CNC operation, assembly and the client's workflow in a new joinery/installation system that reduced Twig’s internal costs and dramatically reduced the client's costs for ongoing work. “Twig would not be the growing company it continues to be without Ivan. The confidence and trust fostered in our clients are what have allowed us to double revenue each of the last three years. We also retain a 100% closing rate for clients who visit for a design appointment with Ivan,” his nominator notes. “He has a high level of ownership of every project he works on, and our customers feel that.”

He adds, “The primary motivation for Ivan is his continued development of knowledge and skill. He can usually be found looking for new materials, processes, or tools to solve both internal and client problems. His entrepreneurial mindset sees him taking ownership of each challenge.”

And by “combining creativity, detail and a customer-centric attitude, he [also] has transformed our work environment.”

Click on the image to open

Andrew Ramirez demonstrates “a rare combination of passion and expertise for sustainable forest products,” and over the past 15 years, he has built a career championing sustainability and responsible supply chains in the forest products industry. Ramirez, 35, is the founding partner of Cherrywood Partners, a Minnesota-based consulting and auditing firm that assists companies in acquiring and/or maintaining FSC, SFI or PEFC forestry chain-of-custody (CoC) certification for wood products sourced from sustainable forests and other responsible sources.

The sustainability of forest resources is key to the future of the woodworking industry and society, Ramirez says, and he works with small family-owned millwork shops to supply chains of multinational corporations to advance that belief. “Wood is the most beautiful, renewable, and sustainable building material. It is a resource that must be conserved for future generations.”

“[C]ompanies should conduct business in a manner that respects the environment, champions social justice, and delivers long-term financial sustainability.”

Ramirez first became interested in sustainability in college because, as he says, it was the right thing to do. He has since made it his life's work.  In addition, in his free time, Ramirez also works with Rotary International to plan and implement environmental justice tree planting projects in historically under-resourced neighborhoods, in essence. helping to “make the world a more just and equitable place.”

Click on the image to open

In the three years since Luke Remmert and his partner Barry Strozier bought Remmert & Co. from his father, the president and CEO has made significant investments to improve the Alabama-based architectural woodwork firm’s productivity and profitability.

“Luke has invested in new woodworking software and has successfully integrated it into all facets of the business. He has also invested in the latest robotic equipment which has dramatically improved the capacity of our factory,” says his nominator. “The impact is very broad. First, our company is breaking new records in both bookings and capacity [and] we have won the ABC Excellence in Construction award for interiors four years straight.”

The 37-year-old Remmert also focuses his time and efforts to help others. In addition to volunteering within his community, Remmert is involved in several industry-related organizations, including ABC and the Architectural Woodwork Institute (AWI); he also teaches estimating for the AWI each year, which “keeps his skills honed and helps build better estimators for the future of our industry,” his nominator adds.

He continues, “[Luke] has a thirst for knowledge, and wants to know every detail in order to enhance both his personal and professional lives. Most importantly to him is that he has a very strong faith and love for others, in particular his family.”

Click on the image to open

Wesley "Wes" Robinson is a rising leader at Robinson Lumber Co., a five-generation firm headquartered in Louisiana. “He was recently promoted to Hardwood Lumber manager after spearheading a new North American Hardwoods sourcing division from the ground up,” says his nominator. “The added volume over and above our production facilities has been instrumental in growing our customer base in North America and worldwide as well.”

In less than two years Robinson, 36, has grown the business unit into a profitable PnL with annualized revenues exceeding $10 million and more than $5 million in new personal sales. “With his can-do attitude, Wes has built valuable relationships to form a steady supply base throughout the South and Midwest. His relentless hustle has grown our North American Hardwood customer base to an all-time high for Robinson Lumber Co.”

In addition to the day-to-day purchasing and sales, Robinson mentors new sales representatives. “Wes has a very strong desire to exceed goals and provide positive energy throughout the organization. His can-do attitude and hustle are both refreshing and contagious to those around him,” his nominator says. “Wes’ pursuit of excellence and competitive nature has seen him put in countless extra hours to make the new business unit successful. He has a passion for wood that not only shows in his woodworking ability but his overall zest while working with both suppliers and customers.”

Outside of work, in addition to spending time with family, Robinson produces fine woodworking pieces which he often donates to charities for fundraising auctions.

Click on the image to open

Since taking over as president of Premier Custom Millwork & Surfaces Inc. in 2010, Jesse Schmitt, 39, has seen the New York-based firm grow in size and scope. Primarily a producer of exterior and interior doors, recent technology investments have enabled the company to expand its portfolio to include flooring and other millwork as well as cabinetry.

“Jesse has to be the most motivated person I know. Each day begins with a positive outlook on what lies ahead and that he has a plan for conquering it,” says one nominator. “He thrives on being able to work through his project challenges. The more difficult the challenge, the more motivated he becomes to find a resolution.”

Customer service and satisfaction are key to the company’s success, and Schmitt and his team deliver. “Jesse is the kind of person who is always putting his best foot forward. No matter what he's doing and how much he has going on, inside and outside of building his business, you just know he's giving it everything he's got. He's totally committed to every project, problem and situation that he's working on. There's no such thing as ‘second best’ in his vocabulary. It's always all or nothing.”

She adds, “Working beside him day to day you realize that all things are possible if you put your mind and heart into it. He takes such great pride in his work and company that it's just not possible to leave the workplace without feeling good about what you have accomplished that day.”

Click on the image to open

A.J. Sousa, 20, is the owner/president of The Grain Studio, a custom woodworking shop based in Ontario. “A.J. is super talented and hard-working. He creates incredibly beautiful pieces of furniture art – all handcrafted and taken to an extremely high level,” says his nominator.

Sousa began working with wood at the age of 13, and his strong work ethic and determination to succeed in the woodworking industry have continued despite a recent cancer diagnosis. “His cancer diagnosis was shortly after he incorporated The Grain Studio and yet he is determined to push through. He’s not cleared yet, but [is still] working as much as possible. Despite all these challenges The Grain Studio continues to be set up for success and is on track to do great things,” says his nominator.

With a motto of “always forward,” plus a “no excuse attitude” instilled in him by his father, there’s no doubt Sousa will succeed in his endeavors. In the short time since opening the company, Sousa’s custom handcrafted solid wood and epoxy river tables – what he calls taking a tree to slab to art – and other creations are already gaining notice in the Toronto area and beyond.

“A.J is an inspiration to many for multiple reasons,” his nominator says, adding that a book is being published about his story. “He has the drive to be great – to make a difference.”

Click on the image to open

Kelsey Spitz-Dietrich’s “extraordinary work advancing innovation, inclusion and sustainability across the company is unparalleled,” says her nominator. Spitz-Dietrich, 33, is the vice president of Innovation & Inclusion at UCS Forest Group of Companies, an Ontario-based provider of lumber and panel products.

“Her stewardship of many technological projects is helping to transform the business and drive it forward into the digital space,” her nominator says. “The work she spearheaded has enabled innovative and efficient ways of operating, as well as provided significant opportunities for development within her team and for many individuals within the organization.”

She adds, “Kelsey has a thirst for learning and a curiosity that drives her to think strategically and act functionally. She carries with her excitement and an openness to understand different perspectives, which drive her to forge the best path forward, even if it hasn't been previously traveled or requires significant work. Kelsey is not shy about challenging work, as she has tremendous capacity and internal drive. She has strong ethical motivations and values – and is compelled to do right by the customer, herself, her teammates and her community.”

In addition to the thought leadership she provides at work, Spitz-Dietrich is co-author of the book, Social Innovation Generation: Fostering a Canadian Ecosystem for Systems Change, and is a “recognized social innovation leader and facilitator, who has worked across sectors to accelerate innovation towards a just and climate positive future.”

Summing it up: “Kelsey Spitz-Dietrich is an all-encompassing powerful woman.”                  

Click on the image to open

Josh Stepp “has an amazing ability to understand wood utilization optimization,” says his nominator. The Product Specialist – Cutting at Michael Weinig Inc./Holz-Her US Inc., Stepp, 36, excels at developing and modifying processes to reduce wood waste and increase yield for the fabrication of solid wood products, including flooring, face frames, furniture and millwork.

“Josh is very focused on seeing shops succeed and also get better,” the nominator adds. “When Josh gets involved in an optimization processes project it is the only thing that matters. He stays completely focused on it until the shop is running at their improved yields.”

Weinig/Holz-Her specializes in solid wood and panel processing technology, with U.S. offices based in North Carolina.

“There is the obvious monetary impact for helping production shops increase their yield and this does play a major role in Josh's motivation and analysis, though the idea that I find most interesting is Josh's view on how optimized processes and automation help the environment. By optimizing the sawing of lumber, shops are able to increase their yield and therefore waste less wood fiber. This has an impact on the amount of lumber needed and over time will affect the entire supply chain.

“While still using wood for construction, [Josh] believes that optimizing the cuts needed to produce a job or even just defect a part will become the greatest tree-saving method we can institute.”

Click on the image to open

Bhavjit Thandi had more than 12 years of experience as an accountant, although none in the manufacturing/wood industry, prior to becoming CFO of British Columbia-based Richmond Plywood Corp. Ltd. (Richply). “Despite this, in his first six months at Richply he was able to deliver over an estimated $1 million in savings to the company,” says his nominator.

“When Bhavjit first started, he asked for a tour of the mill and wanted to know how all the different processes and machinery came together to form our plywood products. No one that previously ran the Finance department ever wanted to go into the mill, but Bhavjit was ready and willing to understand all the different parts and procedures that went into producing our products. He even accompanied our logging manager to see where and how our log booms are stored on the river.”

“Having someone so involved right off the bat showed that Bhavjit was keen to learn this new industry and interested in furthering Richply's endeavors. We have been able to use the funds he has saved through changes he implemented and apply them to other projects, not to mention help our bottom line. Not only has Bhavjit made a positive impact on our financial statements but he has also made a positive impact on his Finance team, Executive Management team, and the Board of Directors as he continues to strive toward the success of Richmond Plywood, whether through cost savings, new initiatives, negotiations with vendors or simply upgrading current procedures.”

Thandi, 35, also draws praise for his “can-do attitude.” “Every day, alongside his daily routines he is presented with various challenges that pop up with the business which may require him to think outside of the box or outside of his role, which he accepts and fulfills happily.”

Click on the image to open

Paul Timmins is co-owner of OE Custom, a Maryland-based designer and builder of commercial and residential furniture and other projects using fallen urban lumber. 

“Paul is the single biggest pioneer for urban wood utilization in the country,” says his nominator. “For the past 10 years at OE Custom, Paul has shifted his reliance on industry wood completely. He is a sawyer, miller, and fabricator utilizing 100,000 board feet of waste wood each year.” Along with the initiatives in place at OE Custom, in 2021 the company joined Cambium Carbon, “a collaboration of like-minded companies built to fight the climate crisis and change the way we think of manufacturing in this country.”

“Shifting his business to utilize only waste wood was a big risk, but it was the right thing to do.  Helping others in the area scale, in the same way, could have created more competition but [again] it was the right thing to do.”

His nominator adds, “Paul is completely self-aware. He witnessed firsthand what his commitment could bring to the greater Baltimore area and wanted to scale it. There was no ego, it was all about impact, carbon sequestration, and tree planting.  Changing current supply chains will take a herculean effort – and Paul is taking that step.  He is doing so free of bias and self-promotion, and it will literally change the world.

“Some heroes wear capes, mine wears flannel,” she added. Timmins, 39, is also the co-owner of Maryland Wood Countertops, an OE Custom operated company.

Click on the image to open

Francois-Xavier Tremblay, software implementation IT, at Web-Cab Inc., helps advance the woodworking industry by adopting technology. “In his role, Xavier accompanies new customers and guides them in successfully adopting technology. He has a gift for adapting his vocabulary to his audience, whether he is speaking to a neophyte or an IT manager he can work with his interlocutor to solve complex issues and reassure them,” says his nominator.

“Despite his young age (30), Xavier has already made a vast contribution to the field of cabinetmaking at different levels. With more than 12 years of experience in woodworking, Xavier is extremely appreciated by customers not only because he has in-depth technical knowledge, but also because he understands the reality and challenges of owners and shop employees, given his experience working as a cabinetmaker.”

She adds, “The impact of Xavier’s work on the industry may seem somewhat intangible to some, but to all those who have called upon him he has saved the day or the profitability of a project more than once. Furthermore, Xavier is instrumental in the development of new software features that solve real issues encountered on the factory floor. His constant contact with customers and knowledge of the industry enables him to relay crucial information to our development team” at the Quebec-based software specialist.

“For Xavier, a technical issue is a fascinating challenge waiting to be resolved and he never hesitates to go above and beyond to help a customer. He is a pillar for project implementation.”

Click on the image to open

Brett Warriner, outside sales for Powell Valley Millwork, is a man of many talents. “Brett is an invaluable member of our team who wears a variety of hats within the organization. With nearly ten years of experience in the millwork industry, Brett's primary focus is outside sales and customer management though he is keenly involved with production scheduling, new product development, and logistics,” says his nominator.
Based in Kentucky, Powell Valley Millwork specializes in the manufacture of mouldings, S4S boards and components made from yellow poplar.

“Brett has a tremendous impact on our company both internally and externally. His calm demeanor and deliberate communication skills add value on the floor of our two manufacturing sites and provide comfort and trust amongst our diverse customer group. We have been fortunate to achieve significant growth in market share across all product categories and Brett's involvement is a key component to that success,” his nominator says.

The 35-year-old Warriner also is known for his attention to detail.  “He is straightforward and wants it to be right the first time.” The nominator adds, “Brett is reliable, trustworthy, and has the company's best interests at heart both in terms of our team, our vendors, and our customers.”

Click on the image to open

Under Owner Marcus Waterworth’s leadership, Waterworths Woodshop Inc. continues to expand in size and scope. The Minnesota-based company has grown significantly since its inception, from a small custom cabinetry shop catering to single-family homeowners, to one serving single-family as well as multi-family residential, commercial markets, and builders/contractors, with products also sold through interior design studios and lumberyards.

The 33-year-old Waterworth “took his already rapidly growing business and has started doing luxury apartments, which has led to an even higher rate of growth,” says his nominator. “They have been expanding for years and have left several builders [as well as other customers] extremely happy with the way that they have structured their company.”

Waterworths Woodshop’s products include custom cabinetry, casework, countertops and millwork packages. The company has received recognition for many of its residential and commercial projects, including the 2021 Wood Diamond Awards for Best Commercial Office (first place), and Kitchens-Face Frame under $25,000 (first and second place), by the Cabinet Makers Association (CMA).

“I have spoken with Marcus many times and he always states that he wants to provide cabinetry to everyone who aspires to have it, and to put out a quality product at a price where your average home buyer can afford it,” his nominator says.

Click on the image to open

Kyle Westbrooks has “already shown ambition and exceptional leadership in his short career,” says his nominator. The Business Development manager for Oregon-based DR. Johnson Lumber Co., the 26-year-old Westbrooks “took it upon himself to [restart] an old family sawmill that had been shut down for over 10 years. Over the last 18 months, Kyle continues to break production records and honor his grandfather’s legacy.” He now runs a crew of 40 employees while navigating the logistical-, personnel- and natural resource-based challenges the industry faces every day.

Westbrook is also credited with developing a market for the chip and saw logs, “which before the resurrection of Umpqua Lumber there were few homes for,” says his nominator. “Kyle has breathed life back into what was a shutdown plant site, creating new jobs in a county where other forest products businesses are downsizing.”

At the family-owned DR Johnson, “Kyle continues to operate the company with the same morals and ethics that made it so successful with his grandfather. He keeps many long-term employees close (40+ years) to absorb generational knowledge.  Kyle has a young son (2 years old) I have no doubt these same morals will be [instilled] in him.”

Founded in 1951, DR Johnson produces locally sourced Douglas fir lumber. Just last month the company announced the Prairie Wood Products division will be reopening its sawmill in Oregon.

Meet the honorees of the Wood Industry 40 Under 40 Class of 2022,  announced by Woodworking Network. This year marks the seventh annual awarding of the 40 Under 40, which celebrates the next generation of industry professionals who are making an impact on North American wood products manufacturing and its labor force development.

"This year’s team of honorees will join 242 alumni who have been recognized with this distinction in the past,” said Tim Fixmer, president and CEO of CCI Media, the parent of Woodworking Network. "We are excited to invite the entire industry to celebrate with [us] some of the youngest, best, and brightest contributors to wood products manufacturing in North America."

The 2022 class includes wood products manufacturers, suppliers, developers, designers, educators, and consultants, from all segments of the woodworking industry, including: cabinetry, furniture, architectural woodwork & millwork, closets and home organization, retail fixtures, and wood components.

“This generation of woodworking industry leaders has faced challenges and uncertainty on a grand scale in the last few years,” said Harry Urban, FDMC publisher, a Woodworking Network publication. “Nevertheless, they have managed to prosper, inspire, educate, and innovate. Congratulations to all of the Woodworking Network 40 Under 40 honorees.”

The 40 Under 40 Class of 2022 is sponsored by PaintLine.

View the slideshow (arranged in alphabetical order) to find out more about this year's class of honorees.

2022 honorees will be recognized at the Leadership Reception, to be held on Aug. 22 in Atlanta, the day prior to IWF, and at the Executive Briefing Conference, Sept. 15-17, in Colorado Springs, Colorado. 2022 honorees receive free admission to this year’s Executive Briefing Conference; effective this year, all alumni will receive a 40 percent discount to each annual Executive Briefing Conference in recognition of their outstanding achievements.”

Plaques for the 2022 Woodworking Network 40 Under 40 are being provided by Epilog Laser.

Due to a tie, there are 41 honorees this year. Those named to this year's class are (in alphabetical order):

Troy MacBeth Abromaitis, director of Development, Bucci Developments • Thomas Allott, manager of Stiles University, Stiles Machinery • Aimee Barnett, owner/operator, Barnett Cabinet Painting • Phyllis Beyers, product manager, Genesis Products • David Biggs, Digital Strategy director, Woodworking Network • Nick Bohlke, president of Manufacturing, M. Bohlke Veneer Corp. • Andrew Busie, 7th grade math  and middle school carpentry teacher, Philadelphia Elementary School and owner/operator, With the Grain • Blair Chandler, manager of Equipment Leasing & Finance, SCM Group • Nick Cox, president, Webster Door & Millwork • Stephen Fancy, owner, Northern Superior Woodworks • Matthew Garrett, VP-Hardwoods, Lewis Cabinet Specialties Group • Laura Gavin, owner/designer, Mars Design Studio LLC • Cassey Gibson, Engagement Specialist, Innergy • Chris Gioia, president, Montbleau & Associates • Sean Glessing, owner, Sean's Cabinetry LLC • Randy Goldstein, CEO, Kitchen Cabinet Distributors LLC • Zach Gosnell, owner/operator, Torch Lake Concepts • Carolyn Guffey, vice president Operations & Marketing, Guffey Systems LLC • Neil Harder, area manager, Felder Group USA • Dustin Harris, Operations manager, Masonite Corp. • Ben Heinrich, Production manager, Closet America • Elijah Jensen, senior technician, CNC Factory · Amy Jones, purchasing manager, Bakes & Kropp Fine Cabinetry • Nirvan Khaitan, senior vice president of Operations, Cosmo Cabinets • Derek Koester, director of Sales - Casework and Millwork Division, Stevens Industries, Inc. · Logan Leinbach, Woodwork Manufacturing specialist, Burke Architectural Millwork LLC • David Mulkeran, cabinetmaker, Elliott Woodworking • Ivan Nuno, lead designer, Twig Custom Builders LLC · Andrew Ramirez, founding partner, Cherrywood Partners • Luke Remmert, president/CEO, Remmert & Co. · Wesley Robinson, Hardwood Lumber manager North America, Robinson Lumber Co • Jesse Schmitt, president, Premier Custom Millwork & Surfaces, Inc. • A.J. Sousa, owner /president, The Grain Studio • Kelsey Spitz-Dietrich, vice president Innovation & Inclusion, UCS Forest Group of Companies • Josh Stepp, product specialist Cutting, Michael Weinig Inc./Holz-Her U.S. Inc. • Bhavjit Thandi, CFO, Richmond Plywood Corp. Ltd. • Paul Timmins, co-owner, OE Custom/Maryland Wood Countertops • Francois-Xavier Tremblay, software implementation IT, Web-Cab Inc. • Brett Warriner, outside sales, Powell Valley Millwork • Marcus Waterworth, owner, Waterworths Woodshop Inc. • and Kyle Westbrooks, business development manager, DR Johnson Lumber Co.

Have something to say? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below.

Profile picture for user karenkoenig
About the author
Karen Koenig | Editor

Karen M. Koenig has more than 30 years of experience in the woodworking industry, including visits to wood products manufacturing facilities throughout North America, Europe and Asia. As editor of special publications under the Woodworking Network brand, including the Red Book Best Practices resource guide and website, Karen’s responsibilities include writing, editing and coordinating of editorial content. She is also a contributor to FDMC and other Woodworking Network online and print media owned by CCI Media. She can be reached at [email protected]