Jim Walker, founding president of the International Certified Floorcovering Installers Association (CFI), became the first installer to be inducted into the World Floor Covering Association (WFCA) Hall of Fame. He was lauded at a special ceremony during Surfaces 2005. His induction marked one of the special installation-related events at this year's show.
Walker is the 32nd inductee into the Hall of Fame, first entering the floor business 40 years ago when he started Walker's Carpeting Inc., a Kansas City-based floor covering installation workroom representing residential and commercial clients nationwide. He led the charge to promote quality installations and a high level of professionalism in the industry, and formed CFI in 1993.
Upon accepting his award, Walker said, "This award is for every professional flooring installer who stands head and shoulders about others in providing exceptional customer service each day."
Installation issues were also at the fore during this year's Installation Showcases, sponsored by Floor Covering Installer, its sister publication National Floor Trends, and the WFCA, CFI and Hanley Wood.
Seminars covered carpet pattern matching, rubber flooring, hand-scraped hardwood, moisture meters, laminate flooring, mixed media and waterproofing. The showcases presented attendees a visual how-to of installation techniques, with a question-and-answer period following each presentation.
Said Mike Suffia, an installer for Anderson Carpet & Linoleum in Oakland, Calif., "The audience seemed attentive to the seminars, and were interested in finding out about the ease of installation of rubber flooring products." Suffia helped demonstrate the installation of rubber flooring at the show.
Greg Hefele, an instructor for the training center operated by Floor Layers' Local 1310 in Saint Louis, mentioned that the audience was interested in learning more after a presentation about waterproofing. "The audience was definitely inquisitive of the new style of waterproofing. They were thoroughly impressed by the latest products," he said.
Ken Maynus, owner of the Pergo Design Gallery in Phoenix, helped out with an hour-long demonstration on the different types of snap-lock installation systems in laminate flooring. He said that the systems were showcased so quickly that the different products became a blur for the audience. "It went really quickly, and there were a lot of questions afterward. We were very pleased with the interest," he said. "The hour turned into an hour-and-a-half."
Close to 40,000 attendees viewed the latest installation tools and technologies at Surfaces 2005.