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Allan Palecek to receive Academy of Achievement Honor at ARTS Awards

Allan PalecekDALLAS MARKET CENTER and the Accessories Resource Team have announced that Allan H. Palecek, founder/CEO and lead designer of Palecek, will receive the Academy of Achievement Award at the 23rd annual ARTS Awards in January.

"Allan's dedication to design, function and craftsmanship have led his brand to become one of the most recognized and well-respected in the industry," said Bill Winsor, president and CEO, DMC. "His contribution to the home décor industry is immeasurable and we are pleased to recognize his nearly 35 years of excellence with this honor."

The ARTS Awards is the premier awards program for the home decorative accessories industry. The Academy of Achievement honor is awarded each year to recognize companies and/or individuals that have made significant contributions to the industry. The award will be presented Jan. 21, 2012, at the ARTS Awards gala's new location, the Hilton Anatole Hotel.

Palecek was born in 1944 in Munden, Kan., and was raised on the family's wheat and cattle farm. Palecek's education began in a one-room school house, and he went on to graduate from Emporia State University with a degree in business.

After college, he joined the Air Force and spent six years as a pilot. Following flying missions in Vietnam, he was stationed near San Francisco, where the idea for Palecek first came to him while waiting for a job as an airline pilot. The Bay Area has been home ever since for him and his wife Nancy, whom he met in 1973.

The following year, Palecek debuted at the San Francisco Gift Show on the bottom shelf of another vendor's display. Despite the placement of the product, Palecek had a successful show and set up shipping from his garage. He received his first shipment from Asia in 1974, one box of baskets that fit into the back of a borrowed pickup truck. After landing his first major customer, Bloomingdales, in 1975, Palecek moved to a 3,000-sq.-ft. basement without windows, plumbing or an elevator.

After two years of traveling the globe looking for beautiful items, he saw a need for the design of accessories focusing on function, beauty and style, and designing products soon became a passion. By 1979, he had designed extensive furniture, lamp and gift lines.

Today, in-house custom lamp production, furniture finishing, custom upholstery and a hospitality division make Palecek unique in the industry.

Palecek's headquarters moved to Richmond, Calif., where the brand became one of the largest employers in the area. Today, Palecek occupies a 220,000-sq.-ft. facility. There are now seven Palecek showrooms and numerous designer trade showrooms across the country.

Palecek and his wife are parents to Andrew and Karey. Andrew currently serves as the company's vice president and Karey now works for Ralph Lauren Home. Nancy Palecek acts as the general merchandise manager and director of marketing and merchandising for Palecek.

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