BILTRITE Wins Retailer of the Year

The family-owned business is the first Wisconsin retailer to receive the award.

The Home Furnishings Association named BILTRITE Furniture-Leather-Mattresses its 2023 Retailer of the Year in the under-50-employees category. BILTRITE, with its Greenfield showroom, is the first Wisconsin retailer to receive the distinction from HFA, the largest organization devoted to the needs of home furnishing retailers in North America.

The awards are decided by a panel of home industry professionals, who judge nominees based on customer experience, company culture, social responsibility, innovation, adaptability, industry contribution, marketing and achievements.  

Mark Schumacher, the HFA CEO, presented to the award to BILTRITE on Wednesday.

“We are very honored and humbled,” said Randi Komisar, a fourth-generation family member at BILTRITE, in a news release. “[We] would like to thank our family, past and present employees, our loyal customers, HFA, Furniture First Buying Group and the many vendors and Amish builders that we have nurtured relationships with over the years.”



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HFA released a statement about the Retailer of the Year honor: “For 95 years, BILTRITE has sought to improve and elevate how they do business. Whether from insights gathered from webinars, in person networking events or furniture markets, they always come away with new ways to up their game. So, it’s no surprise that their attention to their customers and their community has garnered BILTRITE this honor.”

The family-owned store, which is celebrating its 95th year in business, announced that it would donate $5,000 to the Milwaukee Homeless Veterans Initiative and $5,000 to the Grand Avenue Club of Milwaukee in appreciate of the Retailer of the Year honor.

“BILTRITE has been a steadfast supporter of the Grand Avenue Club since 2007,” said GAC executive director Philip Connelly in a news release. “BILTRITE has been instrumental in providing employment opportunities to our members and has allowed our members to find purpose and meaning in their lives. The continued generosity of BILTRITE has enabled the Grand Avenue Club to create an array of attractive opportunities for hundreds of Milwaukee residents who face the challenge of mental illness.”

“We have been very appreciative of the many in-kind furniture items BILTRITE has donated in the past,” said Milwaukee Homeless Veterans Initiative executive director Debbie Buchanan in a news release. “With this $5,000 donation, we will ensure veterans have the items they need to start off on the right foot and maintain their highest levels of independence.”

Komisar credited the entire BILTRITE team for earning the award. “We have come a long way since 1928 and look forward to continuing to be a locally and family-owned metro Milwaukee-area institution,” says Komisar. “We do what we do because we love and have passion for what we do!”



Archer is the managing editor at Milwaukee Magazine. Some say he is a great warrior and prophet, a man of boundless sight in a world gone blind, a denizen of truth and goodness, a beacon of hope shining bright in this dark world. Others say he smells like cheese.