Are you looking to gain new perspectives to help you make better business decisions? Are you seeking input and guidance to help brainstorm new business ideas and initiatives? If so, NAW is excited to introduce the NAW Distributor Executive Networks (DENs). The DENs program offers an exclusive forum for CEOs of privately held non-competing wholesale distributors (of similar size) to share best management practices and assist one another in problem-solving in a confidential environment. The DENs are built to be a strong, privately facilitated, executive networking and educational group. Consider the DEN your informal Board of Directors.

NAW is now accepting applications for this program from NAW wholesaler-distributor members in good standing. Applications will be reviewed as they are received. We will ensure that non-competing distributors are assigned to a DEN of companies of similar sales volume ranges. 

Here are the details you need to decide if this is the right program for you:


DEN members are CEOs and Presidents of NAW distributor member companies in varied lines of trade and geographic markets. Each DEN may have up to twelve members. Member companies may not be a direct competitor of another company in the same DEN group. Executives who cannot regularly attend meetings will be asked to make room for a replacement. DEN membership is limited to one executive from each member company. Substitute attendees are not permitted. 


The annual membership fee is $9,500 per company. In addition, each member company will pay its own travel expenses. NAW provides facilitation, group meals, meeting space, management, and the cost for any guest presenters. 

Those who are selected to participate in the pilot year (2023) of the DENs program will receive a discount of 20% for the first year. 


Each DEN conducts two in-person meetings and two virtual meetings per calendar year. Each meeting starts at noon on the first day with a group working lunch in the meeting room. A group dinner at a nearby restaurant follows the meeting on the first day. The meeting continues with group breakfast in the meeting room on the second day. The meeting on day two is adjourned by 1:00PM.


Each meeting starts with a brief personal and business update by each participant.

Each DEN is assigned a distribution professional, who will meet by phone with each executive a month or so before each meeting to help identify a critical issue or decision to bring to the next meeting. Members will prepare their issues in writing using a DEN One-page Issue Worksheet. The facilitator will work with you in advance of the meeting to determine the most important issues and opportunities at hand to develop a timely and robust agenda. This allows for the collaboration between your non-competing peers to be conducive and productive.

When possible, meeting time is set aside for roundtable discussion of a timely issue of interest to the members. The facilitator surveys the members about possible topics before the meeting. An outside resource may be invited, if appropriate.


A seasoned industry executive is appointed to lead each DEN group and to facilitate the meetings. The leader contacts each member prior to each meeting to help plan the issues for the upcoming meeting. Members may reach out to the leader and one another as desired between meetings. 


All members and leaders will sign the DEN confidentiality agreement. You can be assured that your issues and discussions will be held in the strictest confidence.


Complete the DENs application. Once your application is reviewed and approved, you will receive a notice of your acceptance, along with an invoice for your first year’s participation and additional information. 

For additional information, please contact Courtney Powell, NAW Director of Member Programs at