February 2020, Atlanta, Georgia – Longtime APRO member John D. Blair, a current member of APRO’s Vendor Advisory Committee, was recently honored by TRIB Group at its 2020 Meeting of the Minds in Atlanta. TRIB Group renamed its prestigious Hall of Honor the “John B. Blair Hall of Honor” in recognition of Blair’s many years of service as the organization’s first Executive Director, from September 1986 through June 1998.
“I am humbled at this distinguished honor from TRIB Group,” says Blair. “It was a great privilege to serve as the organization’s initial executive, and I remain very loyal to and supportive of its mission and values. When I was inducted into TRIB Group’s Hall of Honor myself in 2009, I considered it among the pinnacles of my professional career. I never dreamed the Hall of Honor would one day carry my name.”
Blair has continued his relationship with TRIB Group as Vice President of Sales at PTS Financial Services, a supporting organization of TRIB Group for decades. He was responsible for organizing the opening color guard and flag ceremony presented by military veterans at the 2020 Meeting of the Minds, but did not know in advance about TRIB Group’s plans to rename its Hall of Honor after him just moments later.
Blair is a much-celebrated Vietnam era veteran. In addition to being honored for his sustained career success in the rent-to-own industry by TRIB Group, he was also inducted into the Georgia Military Veterans Hall of Fame in November 2016 in recognition of his service in the U.S. Marine Corps during that war.
Blair earned the prestigious Silver Star for valor during the battle of Khe Sahn as a Sergeant in the Third Battalion, Fourth Marines, India Co. during the 1968 Tet offensive. On January 27, 1968, the squad he was leading on patrol came under attack by enemy machine gun fire. Blair skillfully maneuvered his men, led an assault on one machine gun position and personally silenced seven enemy combatants. He and another Marine then crawled toward a second enemy machine gun position and Blair eliminated it with hand grenades, with total disregard for his own safety. In addition to the Silver Star, he was awarded the Combat Action Ribbon and the Navy Achievement Medal for Valor.
Prior to becoming TRIB Group Executive Director, Blair worked with Broyhill Furniture Rentals. After leaving TRIB Group and prior to joining PTS Financial Services, he was Vice President for Marketing and Sales for M&B Jewelry (later CM Jewelry). The decorated war hero has served on APRO’s Vendor Advisory Committee since 2000. “We applaud this recognition of John’s long history of meritorious contributions to our industry,” says Jill McClure, Executive Director of APRO. “He is an asset not only to us, but to his home state of Georgia and our nation. He richly deserves this honor.”