These advocates work tirelessly to help veterans succeed in the civilian workplace. Get to know who they are, what they do, and how they advocate for the veteran community.
Todd Wanek is the President and CEO at Ashley Furniture Industries, LLC.
“It is an honor to be recognized for Ashley’s support in employing our nation’s veterans. The service and sacrifice of these commendable individuals is something that we’re proud to honor in many ways within our organization, throughout the years. The culture and core values at Ashley Furniture align well with our armed forces: passion, drive and discipline. The veterans in our team strengthen our culture of leadership. The skills that they gain during their time in the military strengthen their peers and our organization. We are proud to support those who serve—past, present and future.”
Champion’s Job Responsibilities:
As President and CEO of Ashley Furniture Industries, LLC, (Ashley) Todd Wanek oversees Ashley’s manufacturing, distribution and retail operations in the U.S. and worldwide. Throughout the years, Todd has built an extremely skilled leadership team with extraordinary depth, diversity and understanding of the industry. His passion and commitment to improve Ashley’s operations, products and service is unrelenting and has positioned the company for continued growth into the future. Todd has built the strongest supply chain in the furniture industry, constantly evolving to serve customers wherever and however they want to buy home furnishings.
Why Wanek was nominated for the Veteran Champions of the Year in Corporate America Award:
As the leader of Ashley, Todd Wanek ensures that the value of service and honoring our military is part of the culture at Ashley. Per Todd’s direction and focus, Ashley leads and participates in various programs on an annual basis to support and honor America’s active military, veterans and the fallen. Ashley hosts yearly flag-raising ceremonies at each of its U.S. facilities in honor of Memorial Day. Ashley employees along with members of each state’s local military groups reflect on the true meaning of Memorial Day, honoring the men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifice while serving in the U.S. military. Ashley employees helped establish and continue to support Soldier’s Walk at Memorial Park in Arcadia, Wisconsin, where Ashley is headquartered. Soldier’s Walk captures all U.S. wars with monuments and memorials in chronological order along a 500-meter walk to honor those leaders and veterans who fought to give us the life and freedom we enjoy today. Ashley employees have volunteered more than 10,000 hours in planning and developing the park and monuments. Ashley proudly partners with the National Wreath Across America organization to honor and remember veterans for their service. The organization’s mission is to remember the fallen, honor those who served and their families, and teach the next generation about the value of freedom. Since 2016, Ashley has co-hosted an annual Wreaths Across America event at Memorial Park in Arcadia, WI. In addition to hosting the ceremony, Ashley designates their “Honor Fleet” to haul wreaths to multiple cemeteries across the country for other wreath laying ceremonies. In 2021, wreaths were delivered to 37 locations across Pennsylvania, Louisiana, Texas, Georgia, South Carolina, California, and a special delivery to Arlington National Cemetery. Thousands of volunteers and sponsors in over 3,100 additional locations around the country, at sea, and abroad hold their own wreath-laying ceremonies to honor the contributions and sacrifice of U.S. veterans. Ashley carries out Operation Shut Eye, a program in partnership with Tempur-Pedic® and nonprofit organization Darkhorse Benefits. In 2021 alone, Ashley donated 8,000 mattresses to members of our U.S. Special Operations Forces. Per the direction of Todd Wanek, Ashley continues to find opportunities to support our armed forces. Operation Shut Eye helps our Armed Forces get a good night’s sleep – one they so graciously deserve for all that they do. As noted in the December 2021 issue of G.I. Jobs magazine, Ashley was designated as a 2022 bronze-level Military Friendly® Employer by VIQTORY. This designation is given to employers that exemplify dedication to creating employment opportunities and programs for veterans and the military community. Ashley also provides treats for deployed troops and veterans. Employees at the Ybor City Office in Florida participated in Soldiers’ Angels “Treats for Troops” program, which collects leftover Halloween candy to send to deployed service members and veterans. Todd Wanek’s leadership and vision ensures that U.S. military service and sacrifice are not forgotten but honored in day to day operations at Ashley.