New York -- Store development and facilities professionals from some of the nation’s biggest retail and restaurant chains gathered in Dallas, Texas, to attend Chain Store Age’s 49th annual SPECS Conference, March 17-20, at the Hilton Anatole Hotel.
The show combined a premier educational program — featuring more than 30 individual workshop sessions — and dynamic keynote presentations with plenty of business networking opportunities and a lively exhibit floor.
New this year, SPECS partnered with a charitable foundation, the Retail Orphan Initiative (Retail ROI), whose purpose is to raise awareness of — and provide real solutions for — the 400 million plus vulnerable children worldwide. Founder and donor trustee Greg Buzek, who is president of IHL Group, explained how the group brings together retailers, consultants and suppliers to assist in the group’s efforts to help orphaned children around the globe and invited SPECS attendees to get involved.
In support of the charity, SPECS donated two paintings that were done on site by famous speed painter Dan Dunn to RetailROI, which raffled them off during the show. The winners of the raffle, which raised a total of $5,880, were Todd Chapell, building estimator, Wegmans Foods Markets, Rochester, N.Y., and Craig Chinn, associate principal, KTGY Group, Irvine, Calif.
(For more information on RetailROI, and to find out how you can get involved, click here).
Planning is already underway for the 50th annual SPECS show, which will be held March 16-19, at the Gaylord Texan, in Grapevine, Texas.