Mary Fruehauf Retail Genius Award 2022 Call for Nominations

In late 2017, the ICFA Retail Council created the Mary Fruehauf Retail Genius Award to recognize retailers whose creativity invokes the spirit of the late industry leader’s unique approach to igniting excitement and emphasizing the fun in outdoor living. I’m writing to invite you to compete for the award by completing the entry form and sending supporting documents on or before the deadline of Friday, January 14, 2022.

According to Mariah Maydew, who succeeded Mary as president and CEO of Fruehauf’s in Colorado after her death from cancer in 2015, “Mary was a dedicated and passionate person whose creativity of expression sparked a sense of enjoyment and discovery in her customers, community and the national casual furniture industry for over two decades.”


The Fire House Casual Living Store's President, Grant Henegan, receives award
from Brian Lawrence, Emigh's Casual Living; Mariah Maydew, Fruehauf's
and Cathy Galbreath-Buzbee, ABSCO Fireplace & Patio.

All ICFA retail members are eligible to enter the competition. Competitors for the Mary Fruehauf Retail Genius Award will submit up to three original and creative displays, events, promotions, or concepts that captures the special extra element that makes your company’s retail formula successful while closely channeling Mary’s spirit to create a unique and fun shopping experience.

The winner of the 2022 Mary Fruehauf Retail Genius Award will be announced at the ICFA Educational Conference in Orlando, after lunch on Wednesday, February 16, and honored with a distinctive trophy befitting the whimsical style of its namesake. The competition will be judged by industry veterans and close personal friends and colleagues of Mary: Mariah Maydew, Cathy Galbreath-Buzbee, owner of ABSCO Fireplace & Patio, Birmingham, Ala., and Brian Lawrence, president of Emigh’s Casual Living, Sacramento, Calif.

Previous winners were Village Green Home and Garden, Rockford, Ill., in 2018, Great Gatherings, Gainesville, Va., in 2019 and The Fire House Casual Living Store, Charlotte, N.C. in 2020. 

Eligible retailers are invited to submit descriptions and supporting documentation for up to three related or individual displays, events, promotions, or concepts in the form of photos, videos, screenshots and other downloadable media. Please email your completed entry form here and send digital examples to Michele Morris, mmorris@icfanet.org.