John Christian bernhardt
John Christian Bernhardt (b. 1906 d. 2003) was Chairman of the Board of Bernhardt Industries, which was founded by his father in 1889. John Christian joined the company in 1927, starting at the lumber yard, rough end, veneer department, and advancing through the entire production process.
With a degree in Business Administration from Davidson College, Bernhardt was well qualified to lead the company through the acquisition of a series of other companies and participation In several joint ventures. He added upholstery manufacturing to their successful case goods line. This resulted in considerable growth in sales, production, and the number of employees.
His concern for employees was a top priority. He saw that the company accorded a number of benefits long before other companies adopted the practice and he included the employees of each newly acquired company. Under his guidance, Communications Teams were formed and later Quality Circles were added...all to give employees a voice in the company and a share of the earnings.
John Christian Bernhardt has been a distinguished leader within the furniture Industry and In every area of his life. He served as president of the Furniture Manufacturers Marketing Association, Director of SFMA (now AFMA), received the James T. Ryan Distinguished Service Award and was the first recipient of the Johnson Wax Centennial Award. He served as an officer and director of many companies, foundations, civic, and community organizations.