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Q&A with Amerhart: Celebrating 80 years of business

Amerhart opened its doors in 1940 and is now one of the largest independently owned lumber and building materials distributors in the Midwest. Over the last 80 years, it has been their mission to inspire communities to build their version of the American Dream. We sat down with Amerhart President, Chad Warpinski, to discuss how the industry has changed over the years and why they chose to work with Trex for the last 25 years.

What is your favorite part about working for Amerhart?

The products we sell – like Trex – are overwhelmingly used to enrich people’s lives. Watching that happen in the communities we live, work, and play is very rewarding.

 

What do you think has been the secret to Amerhart's success?

Our team’s collective drive to stay relevant to our customers.

 

What has been the biggest challenge Amerhart has overcome during the last 80 years?

While there have been many challenges, the initial COVID-19 lockdowns rank highly. In addition to the overarching health concerns – our industry is very reliant on physical labor. It was unclear at the time how all the work up and down the supply chain was going to get done.

 

What does it mean to you to work for a company that has been in business for 80 years?

Having an 80-year legacy is both a gift and an obligation. We’re able to leverage the hard work done by those who came before us, but the true measure of success is how well we leave Amerhart for future generations.

 

When you think about "Trex", what comes to mind?

You can’t think “Trex” without thinking “innovation.” In addition to inventing the composite deck category, Trex has been at the forefront of nearly every major progression over the past 25 years.

 

How has outdoor living - and specifically decking - changed during your tenure?

I think the biggest change has been the evolution of outdoor living from a set of products to a lifestyle. When I was growing up, having a deck was about utility (for example, “I need some way to get to my pool”). In tandem with many of the design innovations Trex has pioneered, decking has now become as much an expression of what people value as it is about functionality.

 

What is one piece of advice you would give someone beginning a career in the decking industry?

From the lens of a distributor, its not much different than friendship – if you want to have good partners, you must be a good partner.
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