Suppliers and retailers from across Canada gathered earlier this week to honour the retail home improvement industry’s best hardware and building supply retailers. The occasion was the 2021 Outstanding Retailer Awards Gala Dinner, which marked the end of day one of the 25th Annual Hardlines Conference at the Queen’s Landing hotel in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario. 

Dealers were awarded in eight categories covering the range of hardware and home improvement retailing formats. This year’s winners are:

  • Best Hardware Store, any size – Gravenhurst Home Hardware, Gravenhurst, Ont. Ian and Tara McNaughton, Owners. Sponsored by the North American Paint and Hardware Association (NHPA).
  • Best Building Supply or Home Centre under 15,000 square feet – Bulkley Valley Home Centre, Telkwa, B.C. Lenard Vriend, Travis Nanninga, Rodney Leffers, and Darin Super, Owners. Sponsored by Taiga Building Products.
  • Best Building Supply or Home Centre over 15,000 square feet – GrandErie Home Hardware Building Centre, Dunnville, Ont. Ken Zantingh, Henry DeKlerk, Bert Mulder, Wes Zantingh, and Nathan Mulder, Owners. Sponsored by JRTech Solutions.
  • Best Contractor Specialist – RONA Cowansville, Cowansville, Que. Luc Lamarche, Store Manager. Sponsored by Johns Manville Canada.
  • Best Large Surface Retailer – RONA Kelowna, Kelowna, B.C. Matt Wachter, Store Manager. Sponsored by Techniseal.
  • Best Young Retailer – Jillian Sexton, Co-Owner of Sherwood TIMBER MART, Charlottetown, P.E.I. Sponsored by BMF.
  • Marc Robichaud Community Leader – Gibsons Building Supplies. Julie Reeves, CEO. Sponsored by Trex.
  • Retail Spirit – Annapolis Home Hardware Building Centre, Annapolis Royal, N.S. Rob and Joanne Lawrie, Owners. Sponsored by the National Hardware Show (NHS).

The winners are carefully chosen from a field of high-quality nominees submitted from every part of Canada. The winners stood out within this elite group thanks to their ability to exceed in the areas of good business practice, customer relations, innovation, and niche marketing.

“Over the past year and a half, we have seen the entire retail home improvement industry rise to meet the challenges of COVID, serving customers and taking care of customers under extremely distressing conditions,” said Michael McLarney, president of Hardlines Inc. “Again this year, through these hardships, we were able to identify retailers and individuals that were truly outstanding through this time. We are proud to share their excellence through these awards.”  


About the Outstanding Retailer Awards

Launched in 1992, the Hardlines Outstanding Retailer Awards are the industry’s only national awards program dedicated to celebrating the achievements of hardware and building supply dealers across all banners in Canada. In its 29-year history, the program has honoured more than 150 retailers.