The National Association of Electrical Distributors (NAED) was founded on December 9, 1908 as the Electric Supply Jobbers Association (ESJA), headquartered in Chicago, Ill. The first goal of this new organization was to establish the electrical distributor as an essential force in the electrical industry and the economy.
The association changed its name to the National Electrical Wholesalers Association (NEWA) in June 1928. At this time, it also moved its headquarters to New York City. In 1949, the Association changed its name to the National Association of Electrical Distributors (NAED).
In 1969, the NAED Education & Research Foundation was formed. This also marked the beginning of the public relations campaign to sell the value of distribution to the electrical industry. By 1971, the NAED Foundation was offering 64 seminars. Today, the NAED Foundation has impacted thousands of individuals with its multitude of educational programs.
The '70s were a busy decade. In addition to many other activities, NAED debuted the first "Cost of Doing Business Study," which later became the Performance Analysis Report (PAR), and the Under Forty Club, which eventually became Leadership Enhancement and Development (LEAD). Today, PAR has become one of NAED's most valuable services while the LEAD group provides a forum to develop the electrical industry's emerging leadership.
NAED moved from Wilton, Conn. to its current home in St. Louis, Mo. in 1997. The St. Louis headquarters continues to be the center for the daily operations of the association.
Thanks to the support and involvement of its members, NAED has become the central source of the nation's distributors and their affiliates. It continues to be the meeting place of the industry, providing the only meetings attended by the entire electrical industry.
Regardless of what the future holds, NAED will be standing strong beside electrical distribution, helping it remain the channel of choice for electrical supplies.