The National Tile Contractors Association (NTCA) presented its Best Practice Awards and Five Star Contractor Grand Prize awards for outstanding installations in both commercial and residential projects at Coverings in Orlando, Fla. 
Joe Kerber of Kerber Tile, Marble & Stone of Shakopee, Minn., received the first of two Best Practice Awards for his role in developing and having the barrier-free shower method accepted by the Methods & Standards committee at Coverings 2014. This method was approved for inclusion in the TCNA Handbook. A member of NTCA since 2003, Kerber has served as a state director and now as a regional director. He is a member of NTCA's technical committee and Methods & Standard committee.
Steve Slutzah of Westside Tile & Stone in Canoga Park, Calif., was presented with NTCA’s second Best Practice Award. His strong belief in the importance of NTCA contractors has been the driving force for increased membership in California, according to the association. A member since 2007, as a distributor and soon thereafter as a state director, Slutzah and his company have sponsored numerous NTCA workshops and signed up new members.
NTCA’s Five Star Prize Awards were presented for both commercial and residential tile installations. The Five Star winners received $2,500 each in prize money, sponsored by Dal-Tile Corp. Submissions were judged on scope, complexity, technical soundness and design and presentation.
Welch Tile & Marble of Kent City, Mich., was the recipient of the Five-Star Grand Prize for commercial tile installation. The firm's installation of 45,000 square-feet of tile, 1,500 square-feet of ledge stone and 6,500 square-feet of wall tile at Ferris State University's Rankin Student Center, was an example of the company’s technical knowledge when confronted. A major task from the start, this renovation project’s obstacles included weather, time constraints, multiple product lines and the advancing age of the existing building.
Collins Tile and Stone of Aldie, Va., was the recipient of the Five-Star Grand Prize for residential tile installation. The firm's project Modern Tranquility, started off with a complete demolition of the master bathroom including elimination of two picture windows. The project included a decorative mural inset comprised of handmade, fused glass mosaic.
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