FIRA International has confirmed the appointment of a new general manager (GM), Lee Wade. Wade takes up the mantle from Phil Reynolds, who is stepping into the newly created role of COO of the Furniture Industry Research Association (FIRA).
Lee says: “I am looking forward to my new role at FIRA International, working alongside my new colleagues to deliver first-class solutions across the furniture industry. It’s a fascinating organisation with unique selling points and strengthened by world-class experts whose knowledge spans across furniture testing, consultancy, ergonomics and aftercare.
“My initial plan is to focus on the continuing expansion programme which has been in place for a few months and is backed by investment from our parent company, Element. An example of this can be seen with our UKAS-accredited flammability testing lab which recently doubled in size and took on new testing machines to meet demand. My intention is to focus on looking at where else we can invest and expand to ensure we continue to be the testing provider of choice to the furniture industry."
In his new role as COO at FIRA, Phil will continue to chair various standards committees and represent the views of members on other working groups. He will also oversee and develop projects undertaken by the association and provide a dedicated source of technical information to members, drawing on his 20 years within the furniture sector.
Phil says: “Under the stewardship of the council, the research association has established itself as the centre of knowledge for the furniture industry. My remit as COO is to build on this to the benefit of members and the wider furniture industry.
“I am not entirely stepping away from FIRA International, as I will also serve as the new technical development manager, a role which will perfectly complement my position as COO at FIRA.”