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John d. bassett, iii

John D. Bassett (b.1938), chairman of Vaughan-Bassett Furniture Co., is a champion of American-made furniture and the third generation to work in the furniture industry. Under his leadership, Vaughan-Bassett Furniture Co. sales have increased from $38 million in 1983 when he joined the company to more than $90 million today, the largest wood bedroom manufacturer in the United States.

With nearly 700 employees at plants in Virginia and North Carolina, Mr. Bassett believes that no one can outperform the American worker when given leadership, training and the best equipment. Mr. Bassett has reduced the percentage of imports to less than 2 percent of the company's total sales and in 2012 oversaw an $8 million plant expansion, which included the purchase and reopening of a furniture factory. He has served as chairman of the Committee for Legal Trade which helped level the playing field for U.S. furniture manufacturers faced with unfair foreign competition and advocated for a critical Environmental Protection Agency rule change that benefits both the furniture industry and the environment.

After serving three years as an officer in the U.S. Army, Mr. Bassett began his career at Bassett Furniture Inds. in 1959, working in sales, marketing, manufacturing and management. Today, Vaughan-Bassett uses state-of-the-art equipment and systems to offer a wide selection of colors, finishes and sizes within each collection and Vaughan-Bassett Express (VBX), a quick-delivery program, promises 7-day delivery on about half of the company's line. Devoted to the work force, Mr. Bassett established the innovative Vaughan-Bassett Free Clinic for all employees and their families. Mr. Bassett also created Vaughan-Bassett's "One for One" tree replenishment program, which has planted 900,000 trees throughout the U.S. during the past six years.

A champion of the industry, Mr. Bassett shares his knowledge about successful domestic furniture manufacturing through onsite visits with other U.S. manufacturers. His honors include the American Home Furnishings Alliance (AHFA) Distinguished Service Award, the InFurniture Magazine Man of the Year Award and the International Home Furnishings Representatives Assn. Pillar of the Industry Award. His board service has included the AHFA, International Woodworking Fair, and American Furniture Hall of Fame Foundation.

His community involvement includes serving as a board member of the Cherry Lane Volunteer Fire Department, the Bassett Volunteer Fire Department and the Martinsville/Henry County United Fund. Vaughan-Bassett also supports a free health clinic in Galax, the Galax Public Schools program which provides weekend meals to needy children, and the Virginia Foundation for Independent Colleges. The John D. and Patricia Exum Bassett Foundation supports many worthy causes in Virginia and North Carolina.