Ferguson Inc. President and CEO Claude A. "Chip" Hornsby will discuss effective leadership as the Pamplin College of Business Wachovia Distinguished Speaker on Tuesday Nov.11 at 3:30 p.m., at Squires Commonwealth Ballroom.

Hornsby, who received a Bachelor of Science degree in 1978 from Virginia Tech, has worked at Ferguson, the country's largest wholesale distributor of plumbing supplies, for 23 years. Starting out as a salesman, Hornsby was promoted to positions of increasing responsibility, including general manager, regional manager, and senior vice president before being appointed president and CEO in May 2001. He is a member of the Pamplin Advisory Council and serves on Christopher Newport University's Board of Visitors.

Headquartered in Newport News, Ferguson sells plumbing equipment, heating and air-conditioning parts, safety equipment, and tools. It has more than 700 service centers throughout the U.S. and in Barbados, Columbia, Mexico, and Trinidad. The principal U.S. subsidiary of Wolseley plc, a British building products distributor, Ferguson made $5 billion in sales in 2002.

The Distinguished Speaker series, sponsored by Wachovia, brings prominent business and government leaders to campus to speak to and interact with students. Additional information about the Wachovia lecture is available by contacting Gary Kinder at (540) 231-6602 or at gkinder@vt.edu.