Hooker Furnishings chairman Toms retires, Williamson named to role
October 14, 2021 | 12:12 pm CDT
Hooker Furnishings

Pictured are Paul Toms Jr. (left) and Henry Williamson Jr. (right).

MARTINSVILLE, Va. -- Paul B. Toms has retired as chairman of the board of Hooker Furnishings Corp. effective immediately. The residential furnishings giant has named Henry G. Williamson Jr. as his successor.

After serving as HFC chairman and CEO since 2000, Toms retired as CEO on Feb.1, succeeded by Jeremy Hoff, but remained as chairman of the board in a non-executive capacity. He served on the HFC Board for 28 years, including 21 years as chairman and CEO.

“It has been an honor and privilege to serve on the Hooker Board the last 28 years,” Toms said. “If retirement from active management 8 months ago has taught me anything, it is that there is ‘life after work.’ I’ve been blessed with good health and have enjoyed travel and an active lifestyle. Now, I’m ready to leave my professional career behind and focus on the next phase of my life.”

Toms is a grandson of Clyde Hooker Sr., who founded the company in 1924. He joined the company in 1983, serving in various management roles until he succeeded his uncle, Clyde Hooker Jr. as CEO in 2000.

Williamson, who succeeds Toms as chairman of the board, has been an HFC director since 2004 and Independent Lead Director since June 2016. He previously retired as COO of Truist Financial Corp. (formerly BB&T).

“Hooker Furnishings is in excellent financial condition and has a strong management team focused on continuously improving our results and fulfilling our mission statement; and a strong, diverse Board capable of leading it well into the future,” Toms said.  “I’m confident their collective wisdom, focus on strategy, risk mitigation, succession planning, ESG initiatives and other important areas will continue to serve all stakeholders well. I wish the company continued success going forward and will remain an ardent fan and interested shareholder.”

With Toms’ departure, the HFC Board goes from nine to eight members: Hoff, CEO; Williamson Jr., chairman; W. Christopher Beeler Jr.; Maria C Duey; Paulette Garafalo; Tonya H. Jackson; E. Larry Ryder and Ellen C. Taaffe.

Based in Martinsville, Virginia, Hooker (NASDAQ-GS: HOFT) is listed at 21 on the FDMC 300, a ranking of North America's largest wood products producers. The company's brands include: Hooker Furniture, Hooker Upholstery, Bradington-Young, Sam Moore Furniture, Shenandoah Furniture, H Contract, Accentrics Home, Pulaski Furniture, Samuel Lawrence Furniture, Prime Resource International, Samuel Lawrence Hospitality and HMIdea. The company has upholstery manufacturing facilities located in Virginia and North Carolina, with showrooms in High Point, North Carolina, and Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.

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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 karen.koenig@woodworkingnetwork.com