Class of 2008

John Hamar

MFMA is pleased to induct Mr. John Hamar in to the MFMA Hall of Fame.

John Hamar began his career in the manufacturing of maple flooring over 50 years ago when he was hired as General Manager of Horner Flooring. This however was not John’s first introduction to sawdust. Being a descendent of a long line of forest products industry related icons, John worked in family owned sawmills, lumberyards and crate manufacturing operations prior to joining Horner.

While employed as the General Manager of Horner, John was presented with the opportunity to purchase Horner, along with his father in 1960. With the deal signed, John continued to deploy his strong product knowledge and warm personality, traits that helped him establish life-long relationships with many of his customers, folks he repeatedly refers to as friends. Many of his sales trips were spent staying in homes of the customers he adored, spending evenings bouncing children, who have since become industry leaders themselves, off of his knees. So much was John the Horner icon that many times, Horner was referred to as Hamar Flooring – an occurrence that repeats itself today. John, despite his busy schedule, always found time for his employees, frequently spending time in the plant, always visible and approachable. Honesty and integrity were, and continue to be, his hallmark.

John led the MFMA as the President of its board of directors from 1970 to 1975. This was a difficult time for the Association as manufacturer membership hovered at three, the minimum number required to sustain a trade organization. Consistent with the principles he employed in his tenure at Horner, John guided the MFMA by promoting cooperation not only among its mill members but its growing base of distributors and installing contractors.

John’s leadership traits were recognized by many in the wood flooring industry as evidenced by his being requested to serve, and his tenure, on the board of directors of the jointly sponsored MFMA / NOFMA Hardwood Installation School. Further, John was one of the members of the founding board of directors of the National Wood Flooring Association. Education has been a focal point in John’s career and personal life.

John’s flooring industry experience did not concluded at the manufacturing level. As a result of strong relationships he developed over the years, through acquisition and denovo efforts, John began his involvement in the hard surface distribution industry, forming and acquiring such operations, principally in the western region of the United States. Concurrently, John was one of the founders of Devco Finishes, which ultimately became BonaKemi USA. All of these organizations continue to flourish today.

John is a graduate of Lawrence University. He, along with his wife Joan, spend the winter months in Florida and their summers in northern Michigan near their children and grandchildren.

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