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TRSA History Timeline

1912
Ohio birthplace

Ohio’s Board of Health passes unworkable regulations on rental towels, threatening the linen supply industry and prompting industry operators to unite and form the Ohio Linen Supply Association. The Ohio group soon attracts applications from linen suppliers in other states and is renamed the Tri-State Linen Supply Association in 1913.

1916
National expansion

The Ohio Linen Supply Association becomes the Linen Supply Association of America (LSAA) with members expanding their operations quickly and transitioning from horse-drawn buggies to trucks. Their primary products are laundry aprons, towels and white table linen.

1933
Institute conceived

Representatives of 30 companies from across the U.S. meet in Chicago to discuss fair competition in the industry and how to increase the market for industrial garment service in light of the growth of labor unions forming the National Industrial Launderers and Cleaners.

1947
Institute conceived

National Industrial Launderers and Cleaners is renamed the Institute of Industrial Launderers (IIL). The national War Production Board hails the industry for its “important role” in supplying military, industrial, and civilian needs.

1953
Lobbying priority

Previously headquartered in Chicago, the IIL establishes its first distinct and separate address, relocating from Chicago to Washington, DC, reflecting member interest in stronger lobbying of the federal government.

1961
News initiative

It had premiered in 1917 as an 8-page tabloid and would steadfastly cover the expanding LSAA. Despite the tumultuous years of the Great Depression and World War II, the publication grows its advertising and total page count.

1965
University-based education

Industrial laundry and linen supply managers participate one week a year for five years of experience-sharing and college-level lectures on human resources, delegation, leadership and industry-specific topics. The first class includes 18 students with one to 36 years of experience.

1979
New industry identity

LSAA changes its name to the Textile Rental Services Association (TRSA), increasing the association’s appeal to launderers who specialize in cleaning in heavy industry. Linen and industrial providers recognize they can grow faster if they work together on advocacy, information-sharing, research and training. Textile Rental magazine premieres in July. 

1994
Recognizing uniforms

IIL changes its name to Uniform & Textile Service Association (UTSA) reflecting the members’ most prominent product, industrial uniforms, typically responsible for half of an industrial launderer’s revenues.

2001
New D.C. base

TRSA relocates its staff to the nation’s capital from the Fort Lauderdale, FL area (Hallandale).  The Alexandria, VA base gives the TRSA team unlimited opportunities to meet personally with federal agencies and Congress on legislative and regulatory matters. It also enables them to work more closely with other professional and trade associations based in the area.

2008
Uniting the Industry

The blending of UTSA and TRSA gives the industry a single voice for advocacy in Washington, strengthening its image with federal legislators and regulators. Education and training programs are consolidated, improving their efficiency and effectiveness. Industry information-sharing and research activities are combined, creating broader-based networking and benchmarking opportunities. The reorganization ultimately enhances the industry’s competitiveness and increases the level of representation and service provided to members. 

1912
1916
1933
1947
1953
1961
1965
1979
1994
2001
2008