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Olympian Luger to Keynote Logistics Conference

From maximizing technology to marshalling the resources needed to overcome unexpected obstacles, the agenda for the American Home Furnishings Alliance Annual Logistics Conference will help attendees “Turn the Tide” in 2023.

Four-time U.S. Olympian luger Ruben Gonzalez is the opening keynote presenter for the June 12-14 event at the Francis Marion Hotel in Charleston, S.C. A self-described “ordinary guy,” Gonzalez was not athletic growing up and recalls being the last kid picked for teams in physical education classes. He’ll share how his life changed when he took up the sport of luge. “His message will inspire attendees to think bigger, aim higher and take bolder action,” says Mike Padjen, executive director of AHFA’s Specialized Furniture Carriers division, which sponsors the annual conference. Gonzalez is now training in Park City, Utah, for his fifth Winter Olympics in 2026.

The June agenda covers a broad range of topics important to today’s transportation and logistics executives in the home furnishings industry. A panel discussion presented by the Material Handling Institute will address the current and future state of automation in the furniture/bulk package supply chain. Additional sessions will cover the state of the ocean shipping and trucking industries, the future impact of sustainability and ESG initiatives on the furniture supply chain, an economic outlook and more.  

The conference program also includes several social events, including a private reception at the South Carolina Aquarium in historic downtown Charleston, where attendees will enjoy  sweeping views of the Charleston Harbor from the open-air decks. A tour of Charleston Port, the deepest harbor on the East Coast, and a pre-conference golf outing at Westcott Plantation also are on tap.

To maximize attendees’ conference experience, the discounted conference room rate of $209 at the Francis Marion is available for four days prior to and four days after the conference dates, subject to availability. The deadline for reservations at the discounted rate is May 19. Call 877-756-2121 for reservations and reference the AHFA Logistics Conference to receive the group rate.

The Logistics Conference is open to all transportation and logistics executives in the home furnishings industry. Both AHFA members and non-members may register HERE.

The South Carolina Ports Authority is the Platinum Sponsor of this year’s event. Additional sponsorships at three different levels are available.  Details are available by contacting Mike Padjen at or calling 336-881-1010.