Jeff Portman, president of AmericasMart (left) with honoree, David Harounian
David Harounian, principal of Harounian Rugs Intl. (HRI), was bestowed with AmericasMart's highest tribute, the President's Award, at the 2012 America's Magnificent Carpets Awards ceremony during the January International Area Rug Market in Atlanta. Mr. Harounian is just the third person to receive the Award since its inception in 1994.
"This is not an honor or an award that is given away lightly," said Jeff Portman, president of AmericasMart, at the Friday, Jan. 13 evening gala. The event took place at the Georgia Aquarium's Oceans Ballroom, which was filled to capacity with rug industry friends and colleagues.Portman cited David Harounian's tireless dedication to the industry and his title as the longest serving president of the Oriental Rug Importers Assn. (ORIA) as determining factors leading to the coveted award.
"This unique human being represents the three pillars of the President's Award: integrity, commitment and tenacity," said Portman. In a heartfelt speech, Harounian said, "I thank you all for this recognition and honor. AmericasMart is the national center for rugs. Like so many of us, my company, HRI, has been part of AMC for the past 30 years. Much of our success can be attributed to AMC's foresight, diligent planning and hard work, all on our behalf.
Harounian said of the state of the industry: "Today's world isn't as it used to be even a handful of years ago. Please be strong. Be tolerant. Be positive. Be patient. Do not think of downsizing. Be assured that shortly, more positive economic trends will arise. The future is very bright. Thank you for listening."
Left to right: Lee Harounian, Jeff Portman and David Harounian
Along with the President's Award, HRI was honored in Atlanta with the America's Magnificent Carpets Award in the Handmade $0-$8 per square foot category. For more information, contact HRI at www.hrirugs.com.