Grosser Named TCNA Tile Person of the Year

Tile Council of North America (TCNA) presented its Tile Person of the Year award to Donato Grosser at Total Solutions Plus in San Antonio. The award is presented annually to an individual who made transformative changes to the North American tile industry.

Grosser is the founder and president of D. Grosser and Associates of New York. His efforts in the industry led to a large-scale tile exposition open to all, bringing specifiers, distributors, retailers, installers and more to an international tile exhibition. This became the international tile industry partnership Coverings, which celebrated 25 years this year.

Born and raised in Milan, Italy, Grosser has a B.A. in economics from the University of Jerusalem and an MBA in management and marketing from New York University. Since 1980 Grosser has given more than a hundred seminars on ceramic tile to AIA and ASID chapters all over the U.S. Currently, Grosser is an executive board member of the Ceramic Tile Education Foundation (CTEF), which provides installer training and certification.

The award to honor Grosser was a framed tile mural handcrafted by Marc Holm of AD Studios in Elgin, Texas.


H.B. Fuller Acquires ProSpec

H.B. Fuller Co. has acquired ProSpec Construction Products, a supplier of tile and stone installation products .According to Jim Owens, president and CEO of H.B Fuller, this acquisition supports the company’s growth strategy by strengthening its customer profile in the southeastern and western regions of the United States where tile consumption is largest.

ProSpec, with 2013 net revenue of $27 million, will be included in H.B. Fuller’s North America Construction Products operating segment. H.B. Fuller has purchased the business from Bonsal American, a subsidiary of Oldcastle. The acquisition includes three factories and expands the manufacturing footprint of H.B. Fuller’s construction business into Texas and California.


Taylor Tools to Resell and Produce Sinclair Blades

 Taylor Tools has acquired the rights to resell the line of blades and vinyl welding accessories from Sinclair Equipment Co. Taylor will also continue to produce blades for former Sinclair customers.

“Flooring installers who currently use Sinclair tools can rest assured that Taylor Tools will be able to supply their blade and vinyl welding accessory needs in the long term,” said Gavin Daniels, president of Taylor Tools.


USG Enters Private Label Agreement with Powerhold

USG Corp. has entered a private-label agreement with Powerhold—expanding USG’s distribution network in North America by the distributors represented by the Floor Covering Distributor Alliance (FCDA).

“The private-label agreement is a tremendous milestone for USG Tile & Flooring Solutions,” said Scott Crandall, national account sales and business development manager at USG. “It will provide us with an opportunity to serve the largest flooring accessories distributors in every market across North America.”

The five Powerhold products covered by the private label agreement include Powerhold 850 Fast Finish Patch & Skim Coat, Powerhold 650 NE Patch Plus, Powerhold PC-5K Self-Leveling Underlayment, Powerhold LP-4K Self-Leveling Underlayment and Powerhold 900P Primer.


Woelfel Named President of NTCA

James Woelfel, vice president of Artcraft Granite, Marble and Tile of Mesa, Ariz., has been elected president by the National Tile Contractors Association (NTCA). Woelfel will serve a two-year term which will run until November 2016. He succeeds outgoing president Dan Welch, president of Welch Tile & Marble in Michigan, who becomes chairman of NTCA’s board.

“It is humbling for me to become the first son of a former president of our association’s history,” said Woelfel. “My father, Butch Woelfel, served in this capacity from 1985 to 1987. In my tenure, I hope to raise the awareness of our association to even stronger international recognition, as we continue to play a leading role in the development of installation standards for tile and stone installations. We want to celebrate our past and embrace the future of a global tile industry.”

Woelfel is the current NTCA technical committee chairman, a member of the Tile Council of North America (TCNA) Handbook Committee and the ANSI A108 Committee. In 2011, Woelfel was the recipient of the NTCA Tile Person of the Year award.


WFCA-Sponsored CFI Installation Training to Continue

The International Certified Floorcovering Installers Association (CFI), in conjunction with the World Floor Covering Association (WFCA), has scheduled training and certification events for installers nationwide. Installers may attend for training and CFI certification or, if lacking the required two years of experience, may attend the training only.

The training fee is $495; however, dealers who are current members of WFCA may register any number of installers at a training discount of $200. If scholarship funds are available, they may also deduct another $147.50; leaving the balance at only $147.50.   Registrations must be received no later than 30 days prior to the event to use WFCA scholarships. Space is limited due to props and materials. Early registration is suggested.

CFI provides a study guide for each course which includes the answers to the written tests.  New dates are being added and are listed on www.CFIinstallers.com.


IICRC Names 2014-2015 Board

The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) elected five new members to comprise its 2014-2015 board during its shareholder meeting in Vancouver, Wash.

Tony Wheelwright was re-elected chairman of the IICRC board. In this capacity, Wheelwright will also serve as chairman of the executive committee. “There are many projects on the horizon, and with the combined expertise of this group of volunteers, the Institute is poised to have another very successful year,” he said.

The executive committee includes: Pete Duncanson, first vice president; Joe Hughes, second vice president; Jenny Boymal, international vice president; Norm Maia, treasurer; Kevin Pearson, secretary; and Darrell Paulson, immediate past chairman.

Patrick Winters will continue to serve as IICRC president.


Industry Trade Shows Join Forces for DCW 2015

Five of the leading design and construction industry trade shows have signed on to be part of the 2015 Design & Construction Week (DCW), Jan. 18-23, joining forces for what promises to be the largest-ever residential construction exposition in the nation in 2015, according to show officials.

Earlier this year, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) and the National Kitchen & Bath Association (NKBA) launched DCW in Las Vegas as the International Builders’ Show (IBS) and the Kitchen & Bath Industry Show (KBIS) co-located for the first time, along with the International Window Coverings Expo (IWCE). Building upon that success, additional organizations have joined on to be part of DCW in 2015, including The International Surface Event (TISE) and the Las Vegas Market.


CTEF Partners with Schluter for ACT Program Testing

The Ceramic Tile Education Foundation (CTEF), in conjunction with Schluter Systems, hosted and conducted the first hands-on testing of the Advanced Certifications for Tile Installers (ACT) program for open shop tile contractors at Schluter’s headquarters in Plattsburgh, N.Y.

 During the two-day testing, the pre-qualified CTEF Certified Tile Installers demonstrated their hands-on abilities with skills including large-format tile and substrate preparation, sheet and liquid membranes, mortar bed floors and shower receptors. Prior to taking the hands-on portion of the ACT test, each installer was required to successfully complete the online knowledge test proving their command of the test subject.

Successful ACT installers are then listed on the CTEF website, which is also linked to the ACT website, providing potential clients with a pool of talented and qualified tile installers. These installers now meet the specification requirement calling for qualified labor as shown in the Tile Council of America (TCNA) Handbook and many architectural specifications.


Bona Opens Fifth Training Center Near Dallas

Bona US has opened a new Bona Regional Training Center near Dallas, in Addison, Texas. The Bona Regional Training Center is just off the Dallas North Tollway with easy access for the entire Dallas-Ft. Worth area.

According to the company, the 3,500 sq. ft. facility is fully equipped for training on the installation, sand and finish, and care of hardwood floors. The training center will serve the entire Dallas-Ft Worth region as well as other surrounding areas and is close to a variety of hotels, restaurants and Dallas Love Field.


Bona Opens Fifth Training Center Near Dallas

Bona US has opened a new Bona Regional Training Center near Dallas, in Addison, Texas. The Bona Regional Training Center is just off the Dallas North Tollway with easy access for the entire Dallas-Ft. Worth area.

According to the company, the 3,500 sq. ft. facility is fully equipped for training on the installation, sand and finish, and care of hardwood floors. The training center will serve the entire Dallas-Ft Worth region as well as other surrounding areas and is close to a variety of hotels, restaurants and Dallas Love Field.


Mannington Celebrates Expansion, Development

At a ribbon cutting ceremony at Mannington Mills’ newly-expanded LVT manufacturing facility in Madison, Ga., the company announced it has committed to another investment at the same location.

That facility’s footprint has doubled in size and quadrupled in capacity and significantly increased Mannington’s local workforce. By early 2015, 219 new jobs will have been added at this site, the manufacturer said.

Mannington also announced it has purchased 62 acres of nearby land for further development. At the completion of this second expansion, the company estimates its workforce in the Madison area will have increased by more than 300% in five years.


ISSA Develops Industry Training Certification Program

ISSA, the worldwide cleaning industry association, has launched the Cleaning Industry Training Standard (CITS), a training certification program for frontline professionals and organizations in the cleaning industry.

Developed as a sister program to ISSA’s Cleaning Industry Management Standard (CIMS), CITS has been designed specifically to help address the need for training, improved professionalism, and increased pride across all segments of the cleaning industry.


Flowcrete Celebrates Grand Opening and Expansion

Flowcrete Americas celebrated the opening of its new manufacturing plant and office facility with an intimate lunch event with customers, held at the company’s new premises in Spring, Texas. The 30,000 sq. ft. site will allow the company to more than double its production capacity to over 20 million pounds per year, according to Mark Greaves, Flowcrete Group president.

Total surface area of the new facility is almost double that of the old facility, making room for significantly larger production, office, warehouse, and laboratory areas, in addition to six more loading docks and double the number of both packaging and liquid mixer stations.

“This new premises will do a great deal to meet our current manufacturing requirements while also future-proofing the business, meaning that we can confidently continue with the business expansion plan Flowcrete Americas has put in place across both North America and Latin America,” said Dave McNeece, Flowcrete’s newly appointed managing director.


Tott Retires as Executive Director of FAN

Debbie Tott, who has served as the executive director of the Flooring Association Northwest (FAN) for the last 19 years has retired. Replacing her is Tish Gasparich, a business operations professional hailing from Boeing Corp.

Scott Humphrey, CEO of the World Floor Covering Association (WFCA), of which FAN is one of its many affiliate flooring associations, noted, “At a time when many regional trade organizations were shrinking, some even fading from existence, Tott ensured that FAN not only grew but thrived as one of the largest affiliates in the WFCA family.”

He added, “I am looking forward to FAN’s continued growth and success under Tish. She is uniquely qualified through her background in business operations to take on this role and I have no doubt our membership base in the Northwest will grow and thrive from her contributions and leadership.”


Royal Adhesives’ Subsidiary Acquires Chemque

Royal Adhesives & Sealants, a portfolio company of Arsenal Capital Partners, announced that its subsidiary Royal Adhesives & Sealants Canada will acquire substantially all of the assets of Chemque.

Chemque, based in Toronto, is a supplier of polyurethane foams and adhesives to the telecom, flooring and construction markets. This acquisition builds on Royal’s platform of adhesive, sealant and coating solutions, according to the company.

“We continue to identify leading niche companies that will enhance our product offerings to the markets in which we have chosen to compete. The addition of Chemque will broaden our technical capability for polyurethane adhesives, potting compounds and foams,” said Ted Clark, CEO of Royal.\


Armstrong’s Maier Appointed Flooring Exec VP, CEO

Armstrong Industries’ former senior vice president, global operations excellence, Donald Maier is now serving as the company’s executive vice president and CEO of Armstrong Flooring Products—replacing Thomas Mangas, who left the company to become executive vice president and CFO for Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide.

During his tenure, Maier led a lean transformation that improved manufacturing and procurement productivity, according to the company, established a project management process and implemented a safety program.


BNP Announces Changes, Additions to its Flooring Brands

In its continuing efforts to provide the best educational and most in-depth coverage of the floor covering industry, BNP Media has announced the following changes and additions to its flooring group of brands—Floor Trends, Floor Covering Installer (FCI) and TalkFloor.

Matthew Spieler, editor of Floor Trends, has been promoted to Editorial Director of the Flooring Group. The 21-year industry veteran will maintain his responsibilities as Floor Trends’editor.

Michael Chmielecki has been promoted to Senior Editor of Floor Trends. A veteran of the flooring industry for a dozen years, he will continue as Editor of Floor Covering Installer.

Cristina Toscano has joined the Flooring Group as Associate Editor and will use her talents to help all three flooring brands. She comes to the Flooring Group after serving as managing editor of Environmental Design & Construction (EDC).

Keith Parry has been promoted to Associate Publisher of the Flooring Group. He was most recently national sales manager.

Lastly, Karrie Laughlin, formerly West Coast Sales Manager, has been given an expanded role and will now oversee sales in all states west of the Mississippi River.

Alex Bachrach, Publisher of BNP’s Flooring Group, said these changes “show the commitment BNP Media has made to our flooring publications and indicates its optimistic outlook on the market for the future.”


Custom Launches Tile and Stone Installation Blog

Custom Building Products has launched a blog on its website to help contractors, distributors and architects be more successful in tile and stone installation. Along with offering specific tips and council from the company’s team of technical professionals, the blog also includes access to its newsletter content, Custom Insights.

Additionally, the new blog provides technical bulletins, white papers, videos and tips, tricks and educational pieces. Visitors can sort news articles numerous ways, such as by profession type (contractor, distributor or architect) and by a host of tags on popular topics. For added convenience, articles may also be shared with friends and colleagues through a simple tool that integrates with Facebook, Twitter or a variety of other social media platforms.

For more information, visit www.custombuildingproducts.com.


$140K Raised for FCIF in CCA Tournament

The 12th Annual Alan Greenberg Charity Golf Tournament hosted by CCA Global Partners brought together floor covering industry colleagues at Barnsley Gardens resort in Adairsville, Ga., located in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, for a round of golf to benefit the Floor Covering Industry Foundation (FCIF). After a day of friendly competition, the tournament raised $140,000 to help FCIF in their dedication to financially assisting those in the industry who are experiencing catastrophic illnesses, severe disabilities or other life-altering situations.

“We are fortunate to have this opportunity to bring together business partners and friends to support a worthy cause.” said Howard Brodsky, co-founder and co-CEO of CCA. “We all enjoyed the day of golf, but more importantly we raised significant funds for FCIF.”

Floor covering industry members and supporters from across the country attended this year’s event. Manufacturers, distributors, retailers, industry trade associations and individuals contributed to FCIF through the Alan Greenberg Memorial fund by participating in the tournament as well as through sponsorships and donations.

For more information on applying for aid, please visit www.FCIF.org.


Aspecta Launches ‘Revise’ Reclamation Program

Metroflor’s Aspecta brand has launched the Revise Program—a free one-call reclamation service that enables contractors to return installation cuttings or replaced vinyl flooring to the company to be recycled.

Depending on current demand from the factories, reclaimed content will either be utilized for backing material in other Metroflor branded products, or it may be processed into car, boot, or floor mats.


IWPR Tradeswomen Survey Results Released

A new brief from the Institute for Women’s Policy Research (IWPR) summarizes findings from the 2013 IWPR Tradeswomen Survey finds that many women working in the construction trades earn good wages, but discrimination and harassment are far too common experiences.

Nearly a third of the over 200 respondents reported high levels of harassment, and more than one in 10 experienced severe enough employment discrimination to make a formal charge to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. In addition, 37% of those who identified as LGBT reported frequent discrimination or harassment based on sexual orientation, and 32% of women of color reported frequent racial harassment and discrimination.

Almost a quarter of all respondents reported there is never another woman with them on the job and 46% of non-union respondents reported this isolation, compared with 16% of union members.

More than a third of respondents report not being treated equally in hiring and the allocation of hours of work, and only 41% said they were treated equally with respect to promotions.


Upcoming Events

CFA Children’s Holiday Party – Glendale Heights, Ill., Dec. 7. (800) 637-8877.

Delmarva CFI, Mid Atlantic FCA Installer Party – Frederick, Md., Dec. 17. (301) 748-3733.

2015 INSTALL Conference – Las Vegas, Jan. 18-20. www.installfloors.org

The International Surface Event  – Las Vegas. Jan. 20-23. www.tisewest.com

World of Concrete 2015 – Las Vegas. Feb. 2-6. www.worldofconcrete.com

For more industry events and training, visit www.fcimag.com and click the Calendar of Events link under the Resources tab.


NEW HIRES AND PROMOTIONS

Bostik has appointed Thomas Hooker southeast territory manager of the firm’s Consumer & Construction Business Unit.

Doug Young has joined HPS Schönox as executive vice president. Based in Atlanta, Young will work extensively on the overall strategy of the company and in further development of the national sales and support teams.

Flowcrete Americas has named Michael Dzialo vice president of sales. In this role, Dzialo will be responsible for managing and growing sales in the domestic U.S. market as well as continuing to drive the company’s growth in developing export territories, such as Canada and Mexico.

Fishman Flooring Solutions has named Mary Henritz manager of its northern region effective Jan. 1, 2015—succeeding Jerry Murphy, who is retiring at the end of this year after a career with Fishman that spans 37 years. In this role, Henritz will oversee all sales and operations for the firm in Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Northern Virginia and the District of Columbia.

Fishman has also named Rob Hoffman director of architectural specifications. In his new role, Hoffman will manage a four-person team of professionals who consult with architects, designers, specifiers and others to provide solutions to their flooring project challenges.

Heather Yario-Rice is now HPS Schönox regional vice president of sales for the Great Lakes Region. In this role, she is working to expand distribution and brand awareness throughout this important area of the country.

Lackmond Products has named Ted Skaff vice president of marketing, where he will oversee the firm’s marketing and new business department and strategic growth initiatives within the U.S., Canada and Latin America.

Gary Onate has joined UFloor’s Systems’ Uzin divisionas regional manager for the Midwest region. Prior to joining Uzin, Onate most recently worked as an installation specialist and product manager for EJ Welch Co.

Mark Dodd has also joined Uzin as technical sales manager for San Diego and Southern California.


Distributor Appointments

Big D Floor Covering Supplies will now distribute UFloor System Inc.’s Uzin brand of subfloor preparation products in two of its 26 branches.

Denver Hardwood Co. distributes HomerWood throughout its Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska and Wyoming networks. In an effort to strengthen this partnership, HomerWood recently hosted the distributor at its Titusville, Pa. facility.

Fishman Flooring Solutions is now distributing the NovaFloor luxury vinyl flooring line made by Novalis Innovative Flooring in Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Virginia, North Carolina, Eastern Tennessee, South Carolina and Georgia.