NAPSD 2022 Educational Conference and New President Announcement

NAPSD 2022 Educational Conference and New President Announcement

Equiparts has been a member of the North American Plumbing Specialties Distributors (NAPSD)  for many years. We are excited to announce that during the NAPSD 2022 Education Conference in Seattle earlier this month, our very own Yolanda Frank was elected the new President. Read on to learn more about the event, and Yolanda’s plans for the future of NAPSD.

Seattle NAPSD Event

This year’s NAPSD Education Conference was at the Westin Seattle in Washington state on July 11-14, 2022. The conference was focused on topics such as leading change in your business, and investing in your business by growing leadership skills and expanding professional networks. It featured vendor presentations by Sloan, Watco, T&S, CSB, Zurn, Tigris, Barry Walters, Kissler, and Chicago Faucet. There were education seminars, committee and business meetings, and the John Mueller Awards Dinner, along with some fun Seattle sightseeing opportunities sprinkled throughout.

Tony Ferraro, our Assistant Sales Manager, and Yolanda Frank, our Director of Purchasing & Inside Sales, attended the event on behalf of Equiparts. Read their thoughts below to learn more about the event.

NAPSD Members with current President Jimmy Tragakis, F. W. Webb Company Account Manager

Tony’s feedback about the NAPSD Seattle Education Conference:

“It was a great meeting overall!  It was nice to finally meet the other members of NAPSD and hear about everyone’s success and struggles in the industry.  The vendors did a nice job of training and updating the group with presentations on new products in the market. We had two guest speakers who ran a training session each morning that led to group discussions pertaining to leadership and hiring practices in today’s market.”

-Tony Ferraro, Equiparts Assistant Sales Manager

Yolanda’s summary of the event:

“The NAPSD Conference kicked off Monday evening with a reception sponsored by Sloan. Since we haven’t had an in-person meeting in 3 years, much of the conversation during the reception centered around catching up with fellow members.

Tuesday morning, we had a leadership training session with WiLD Leaders (Whole + Intentional Leader Development). They challenged us to think about what type of leader we are under pressure, and educated us about strategies we can use to manage that pressure. It was quite interesting to realize what your leadership style really is in those situations, and to think about what your team may or may not need from you when everyone is stressed.”

Wednesday morning, we participated in an exercise led by Lindsey at LTHJ Global regarding hiring individuals that are just now entering the workforce. Interestingly, it made us ask, who are we, and what is our company culture? That’s what a lot of potential employees want to know. They ask, can they see themselves in that environment/culture? Reflecting on these questions can help address any negative or biased thoughts people might have about the plumbing industry.”

“Both of the training sessions had us look inward, which can be tough, but is necessary. Tuesday afternoon and late Wednesday morning were spent with vendors – Sloan, Watco, T&S, CSB, Zurn, Tigris, Barry Walters, Kissler and Chicago Faucet. Each vendor spent 30 minutes discussing new products, new capabilities, and what to expect in the year ahead. Tigris is a new vendor that the Group is pretty excited about…especially us!

Not sure if Seattle is known for its cuisine, but it did not disappoint. We had wonderful dinners all three evenings that really felt unique to Seattle.”

“Yours truly was elected President of NAPSD! My service to the organization begins next year, but I’m fully engaged in the NAPSD 2023 Vendor Trade Show to be held in Austin, TX! (April 17th-19th).”

Yolanda Frank, our Director of Purchasing & Inside Sales

We are excited for Yolanda and her new role as NAPSD President, and look forward to seeing what her enthusiasm, drive, and professionalism bring to the organization.

Q&A with Yolanda Frank, NAPSD’s President-elect for 2023

  1. What is your role at Equiparts?
    Currently, I’m the Director of Purchasing & Inside Sales. I oversee our purchasing activity and vendor relationships, and I also support our Inside Sales team in reaching their sales goals.  Both pieces have been critical to the growth we’ve experienced over the past several years.  The vendor relationships allow us to have the correct inventory at the right cost so that we can maximize profitability, while the Inside Sales team allows us to reach customers that our ‘boots on the ground’ cannot.  Their technical knowledge and excellent customer service separates us from our competition.
  2. What do you think is the biggest benefit of being a member of NAPSD?
    It’s hard to narrow it down to just one, but I think it would be the relationships that are developed.  Many of the members are small independent operations that started their business because of their joy and interest in the plumbing parts industry.  When you have the opportunity to meet with others who share the same interest, and who possibly are experiencing similar obstacles, it’s wonderful. You learn about helpful tools, and share best practices.  Many of the members have been personal friends for years.
  3. What was your favorite event or take away at the Seattle conference?
    The Seattle Conference was the first time we had gotten together in person in 3 years, so my favorite part was seeing everyone.  But truly the best event was the Leadership Training. As mentioned, many of the companies are small independent operations, so it’s rare for us to take time to work on ourselves.  The NAPSD Educational Conference allowed us to think about what type of leader we are, what we might do differently, and what our team/business needs from us.  Spending six hours over two days focused on our personal growth, and learning how that can turn into strategic company growth was my favorite part of all the events, and was definitely time well spent.
  4. What are your plans for NAPSD as acting President in 2023?
    I’m so excited about being elected President of NAPSD.  It’s been a journey to get to this point in my career, but it couldn’t have been done without the support of many of the members.  Regarding my plans over the next 2 years while I’m President, I want to increase communication within the group, increase membership in the group, and strengthen our vendor relationships. Within those three areas, I have the following goals:
    1. I would like to develop a quarterly channel of communication that allows members to stay current on industry news. So much happens within a year, and waiting until we are in person to discuss it is too long of a time. 
    2. I hope that my position and visibility as a minority female president will inspire membership in companies that may have been on the fence about joining. The make-up of the companies is changing, and I want to make sure everyone feels welcomed. 
    3. Lastly, I want to make sure that the vendors know we need them. We also need them to see us, and structure programs to support the types and sizes of our businesses. 

My plans may seem ambitious, but I’m up for it, and I am truly excited about the possibilities. 

Yolanda Frank at her office at the Equiparts Headquarters in Oakmont, PA.

Interested in becoming a member of NAPSD? Learn how to join on the NAPSD website.

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