L. W. (Andy) Anderson was born in 1899 in Indiana and moved to Chicago in 1930 to work as the GM for the Daystrum Corporation – a plywood manufacturer. A natural salesman, Andy was successful in selling plywood to the U. S. Navy for use making PT Boats and Higgins Landing Craft that were used in WWII. The Navy was also trying to find a floor that could be installed in base houses over concrete slabs. Andy theorized that if his plywood could stand up to the rigors of seawater, it should be stabile enough to be glued to a concrete slab. He cut the plywood into 12″ x 18″ blocks, put a tongue and groove on the edges and glued them down, which created the first American Engineered Wood Flooring in 1938.
Andy sourced plywood for the US Navy during WWII and started his own business when the war ended in 1945, Standard Plywood, Inc. He was successful in his first year. Andy soon purchased two plywood mills in NC and a veneer mill in SC in order to become a manufacturer, not just a broker. Andy excelled at the selling, but recruited his son, Bob to aid in managing manufacturing.