The Charlotte Woodworkers Association, is a non-profit organization. It was formed in 1985 for the purpose of promoting excellence in woodworking through teaching, development of individual skills and fostering interest in our craft.
The John McAlister Award is awarded annually by the Charlotte Woodworkers Association to the club member who in the current year most exemplifies the purpose of the organization through display of :
Demonstrating the Spirit of the Club
The Advancement of Woodworking Skills(
The Sharing of Knowledge
Participation in Club Activities
This years Chairman of the Award Committee is Greg Smith. All submissions below will go directly to the award committee for consideration.
Past recipients of the award are not eligible to receive it again.
Past Recipients include:
2015 – Fred Miller 2016 – Bruce Bogust 2017 – Dave Powles 2018 – Mike Smith 2019 – Randy Hock 2020-2022 – Award not given due to Covid restrictions and limited meetings.
Award will be result of written (email) nomination by any current club member, submitted to the award committee to be designated by the Board. A member may also nominate him(her)self.
Nominated club member must be a current dues-paid member for the year the award is given. The nominated club member cannot be a previous McAlister Award winner.
Announcement of the coming award and nomination process will be made during regular club meetings prior to the October meeting. Nominations will be solicited from attendees of the October regular meeting and mass email sent to dues-paid members.
Nominations may be made any time before the deadline. Deadline for nominations will be November 18, 2019 (6:00pm). Nomination is simple — name the nominee, and list specific reasons for the nomination. Email nomination to firstname.lastname@example.org or give a hard copy to Greg Smith on or before the November meeting.
Award will be announced and presented at the Christmas meeting of the club.
Mary Lou Miller helped me put together these great bullet points to help you craft your nomination.
Demonstrating the SPIRIT of the CLUB
affable, inclusive, welcoming all seasoned members and newcomers alike
is readily accessible for discussion and participation at meetings, via phone, internet, etc
accepts and supports projects put forth by consensus of club members
The Advancement of WOODWORKING SKILLS
continually educating self about standards, methods, materials, and tools
shows appreciation for and knowledge of the history of woodworking
sets high expectations for developing best methods and production outcomes
The Sharing of KNOWLEDGE
contributes educational materials to club through communal loans or library gifts
demonstrates techniques, explains varied uses of materials, announces resources/classes
offers assistance to all members in choosing and implementing ideas, challenging voids
PARTICIPATION in Club Activities
present, visible, and actively engaged at club meetings and club’s public outreach projects
contributes ideas, skills, materials, and assistance to club and individual endeavors
goes beyond what is asked by club to envision what is needed and how to accomplish it
The winner of the 2018 McAlister award is Mike Smith. When Mike joined CWA in the early 2000s, he became an active contributor to the club and activities. He has continued this level of involvement throughout his membership.
Mike served 2 terms as CWA president, where he guided the club into being operated as a business, with regular board meetings and official activities. Under Mike’s guidance and encouragement, CWA became Incorporated as a tax-exempt non-profit, and achieved 501(c)(3) status.
Mike has performed in major club activities, doing demonstrations and talking with the public. His presence at Matthews Alive and Festival In The Park makes CWA’s displays and demos come to life.
Mike makes himself available at short-notice to put on programs at regular club meetings. His demonstrations and talks are always informative and enjoyed by everyone.
Mike, with his personal efforts to liquidate shops, has helped new members obtain tools and machines members may not have been able to have or afford.
Mike has hosted many CWA members in his own home shop, teaching and coaching on their projects.
Mike is the one who answers all the inquiries about the club that come via our website and Facebook page. He does a great job promoting the club and is always a fine example of the people involved in the club. He also does a great job at the club Christmas party which involves a lot of time making the items he gives out.
With Mike’s involvement, CWA has become a better organization, and many members have become better woodworkers.
Mike is a giver, in the truest sense, and is highly deserving of the McAlister Award.
“Cartouche” Award: A highlight of our meeting is the recognition of an exceptional period furniture maker with the awarding of the Cartouche, the SAP FM’s annual award for lifetime achievement. The Cartouche is a bronze casting off a carving by SAPFM member Gene Landon of an 18th century Philadelphia cartouche of a Joseph Ellicott clock. This year the Executive Council is excited to announce that John McAlister of Charlotte, North Carolina will receive the award. John has been working wood as an amateur for almost 35 years, most of it satisfying his passion for building 18th century American period furniture. He is a self-taught, consummate craftsperson whose introduction to furniture making was Marlow’s Fine Furniture for the Amateur Cabinetmaker. John made all the pieces in the book. In fact, no period piece has ever intimidated John, but that is to be expected from this former fighter pilot who flew P-51’s during WW II. His home is filled with his work including his masterpiece Goddard-Townsend secretary. This piece was featured on the back cover of the April 1998 Fine Woodworking. Like many period furniture makers who started before woodworking magazines appeared, John has visited countless museums inspecting and measuring pieces of furniture that he later recreated in his basement workshop.
John embodies a special dedication to our craft and has always been willing to share his plans, research, and knowledge with fellow woodworkers. Jeffrey Greene thanked John on the title page of his book American Furniture of the 18th Century for his suggestions and encouragement. Numerous testimonials were received during the Cartouche selection process on John’s behalf thanking him for his help.
The Society of American Period Furniture Makers is honored to award gentleman and cabinetmaker, John McAlister with this year’s Cartouche Award.