Mike’s leadership and advocacy in business and entrepreneurship has been at the forefront of the Appalachian Ohio region since 1975. After watching American furniture manufacturers move their factories off-shore in the 90’s, Mike knew there must be a better way to manufacture furniture domestically and keep jobs in the U.S. He also saw a lack of choice in custom furniture among designers and knew he could offer something better.
With the drive to use the skills and resources of the local economy and create a better offering where there was a need, Mike started Contraxx Furniture in 1996. His innovative efforts introduced the Hub-and-Spoke manufacturing model to the furniture-making industry. This distributed manufacturing system ensures that people can live and work in their own communities while using the crafts taught to them and practiced by their families for generations. The end result is a thriving local economy, high quality custom furniture and satisfied customers.
“Our employees give me lots of kindling,” Mike says, “I strike the flint, but they create the fire.”
BY SPECTRUM NEWS STAFF OHIO PUBLISHED 5:02 AM ET APR. 18, 2021
Mike sits down with Mike Workman, CEO of Contraxx Furniture in McConnelsville to discuss one issue with finding jobs in Ohio's Appalachian foothill counties.
"What happens in these small towns is, large companies come in, build large factories and stay for a while, then pull up roots. Like myself, 160, 200, 500 people are left unemployed," Workman said.