PPAI has selected Gene Geiger, MAS+, co-owner and CEO of Lewiston, Maine, distributor Geiger, and Charles “Chuck” Pecher, president of St. Louis, Missouri-based supplier Skinner & Kennedy, as its 2019 Hall of Fame inductees. The induction ceremony will take place during the Chairman’s Leadership Dinner at The PPAI Expo in Las Vegas, January 13-17, 2019 at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center.

The promotional products industry has grown and prospered because of the creative spark and dedication of many, but the selfless efforts and industry devotion of some individuals are monumental. PPAI gives them permanent recognition through induction into its Hall of Fame.

“Gene’s and Chuck’s years of leadership and volunteer service have guided and benefited PPAI in innumerable ways,” says Paul Bellantone, CAE, PPAI president and CEO. “Their vision for this great industry still guides us today.”

As CEO of the Geiger Group since 1994, Geiger is the fourth generation to lead the family business. During his tenure, the more than 130-year-old company has risen to become the nation’s largest privately held distributorship.

Geiger has been recognized by PPAI with its Distinguished Service Award, PPAI Volunteer of the Month and as a PPAI Fellow. He has served twice on the PPAI Board of Directors and has served in the roles of Vice Chair of Financial Services and Vice Chair of Technology. He has been an ardent champion of the industry’s product safety initiatives and served as both member and chair of the Product Responsibility Advisory Group. He has been heavily involved in the industry’s ecommerce standards. Currently he is co-chair of the annual PPAI Product Responsibility Summit. He has served on innumerable PPAI committees over his many years of volunteering and encourages his staff to volunteer at the regional and national level. Geiger has also been ranked in the top 10 on ASI’s “Power 50” list for 7 years and has served four times as president of Diary Publishers International.

Charles “Chuck” Pecher began his industry career in 1975 at Skinner & Kennedy Co. Now, 42 years later, he is credited with the strategic organization of PPAI during its move from Chicago to Irving, Texas, in the late 1970s. He helped streamline the board, reorganize the committee structure, redefine the role of board chair and develop the first major process for strategic planning. In 1993, Pecher was instrumental in rebranding the Association from Specialty Advertising Association International to Promotional Products Association International. In addition, as chair of the Promotional Products Education Foundation, he developed and implemented its first major fundraising program. In 2000, Pecher was recognized with the Distinguished Service Award and in 2016 as a PPAI Fellow.

An active member of Promotional Products Association Mid-South (formerly known as St. Louis Advertising Specialty Association), Pecher served from 1975 to 1980 as a board member, show chair and president. He has also served in board leadership roles for the Calendar Advertising Council (1985-1990, chair in 1990), Printing Industries of St. Louis (2005-2010, chair 2009-2010), Printing Industries of St. Louis Service Corporation (2004-2009, chair 2009-2010), Printing Industries of America (2002-2005) and as The Master Printers of America board chair.

Induction into the PPAI Hall of Fame reflects Geiger’s and Pecher’s legacies and contributions to the promotional products industry and their communities. The PPAI Hall of Fame is the Association’s highest distinction and has been in existence since the first honorees were inducted in 1977.