Bill Lee, former head of the NHPA, has died

Bill Lee, former president and CEO of the North American Hardware and Paint Association, died on Sept. 29. Lee was a passionate supporter of the independent home improvement retail industry, serving the association for over 20 years before retiring in 2017 (shown here).

Lee started his work with the association, then known as the National Retail Hardware Association, as an outside marketing consultant for 12 years before starting as the association’s marketing director in 1996. During the early 1990s and late 2000s, NRHA launched its custom publishing department and catalogue business under Lee’s guidance. In 2008, Lee took over as CEO. He also served as general chairman of the International Hardware Association.

Lee was integral to the development of the original version of the association’s product knowledge training courses. He also worked closely with the team at Hardlines, which represented the NHPA in Canada for many years.