Keynote Speaker & Opening Session
Sunday, April 15
3:30 PM – 4:45 PM
Don Finkell, CEO and Founder, American OEM
Don Finkell is the CEO and founder of American OEM, a wood floor manufacturing company in Only, Tennessee. Prior to American OEM, Finkell was the CEO of Anderson Hardwood Floors and led the family-owned business from 1988 to 2007. After the merger of Anderson Hardwood Floors and Shaw Industries, Finkell assumed responsibility for all Shaw Industries’ wood operations.
Finkell is the past chairman of the Hardwood Federation and National Wood Flooring Association (NWFA), and current chairman of the Hardwood Plywood and Veneer Association (HPVA) and NWFA Education and Research Foundation (NERF). In 2009, Finkell received the Green Step Award from Floor Covering Weekly magazine for environmental contributions to the floor covering industry. He is the only individual to receive this award. Floor Covering News magazine also awarded Finkell the 2014 Al Wahnon Lifetime Achievement Award.
Throughout his career, Finkell has successfully supported the virtues of employing offender workers and providing them reentry opportunities. As CEO of Anderson Hardwood Flooring, he opened operations in four locations in South Carolina and Tennessee. During the merger of Anderson Hardwood Floors and Shaw Industries, he championed the successful continuation of the operations using offender workers, and as CEO and President of American OEM, opened an operation at the Turney Correctional Industrial Complex in Only, Tennessee, where he converted empty space into a production area utilizing 190-200 offenders a day. Finkell also contributed to the National Institute of Corrections/NCIA Satellite Broadcasts supporting the benefits of providing work opportunities to America’s offenders. Finkell is an outspoken public advocate for the benefits of Correction Industries (CI) and the Prison Industry Enhancement Certification Program (PIECP) to the offender, the business owner and society.
Mr. Finkell will discuss his experiences as a PIECP partner and the benefits they have brought to him both professionally and personally. Come to the keynote address to hear the success stories of former offenders, how they have succeeded after release, and insight into partnerships between CI and businesses.