NWFA Launches Partnership to Benefit Military Veterans

When former U.S. Marine and combat veteran Nick Kimmel walked to the pitcher’s mound before the St. Louis Cardinals baseball game on April 28 at the start of the National Wood Flooring Association’s 30th anniversary convention, he represented the Gary Sinise Foundation. He represented veterans across the country. And, standing on two prosthetic legs and having only his right arm with which to toss the ceremonial first pitch, he represented what is possible.

Gary Sinise Foundation’s R.I.S.E. (Restoring Independence, Supporting Empowerment) program builds smart homes for veterans who have sacrificed their health, many losing multiple limbs during their military service. Gary Sinise, the Oscar-nominated actor, attended NWFA’s Wood Flooring Expo in St. Louis to officially announce his foundation’s partnership with the NWFA, giving a stirring 15-minute speech to an overflow crowd at the Kickoff General Session.

Eight NWFA member manufacturers have committed to providing materials: American OEM, Mannington Wood Floors, MAPEI, Mullican Flooring, Rust-Oleum, Sheoga Hardwood Flooring, Somerset Hardwood Flooring and WD Flooring. Distributors and contractors in the communities where homes are being built will have opportunities to participate as well, creating locally based support for the home-building projects.

NWFA members will participate in projects for up to 12 homes per year, and will partner with manufacturers that match the U.S.-based manufacturing requirements of the R.I.S.E. program.

More information about the Gary Sinise Foundation’s R.I.S.E. program is available at garysinisefoundation.org. NWFA manufacturer members interested in being involved should call NWFA at (800) 422-4556.

Halex Joins Fuse Alliance as Preferred Supplier

Fuse Alliance announced that Halex Corp. has joined the Fuse Alliance network as a Preferred Supplier. Based in Southern California, Halex is a leading manufacturer of flooring installation products including seam tape, flooring nails, underlayment and moisture barriers.

Halex offers Fuse Alliance network members brands such as VersaShield, Orcon, Capitol, Roberts and Preferred for products ranging from carpet seaming tape to installation tools. Halex also has two additional U.S. manufacturing and distribution centers located in Calhoun, Ga. and Bensalem, Pa.

WFCA Acquires CFI; New Programs Announced

Scott Humphrey, World Floor Covering Association (WFCA) CEO, recently announced his organization has added the International Certified Floorcovering Installer Association (CFI) and provided “the infusion of capital necessary to continue and expand CFI’s installation training and certification programs.”

Robert Varden, who was tapped to lead CFI after Jim Walker stepped down, will take on the role of vice president of the CFI Division, overseeing existing and expanded certification training programs.To accommodate this move, WFCA has opened an office and training facility in Lenexa, Kans., which will house staff from both organizations including Tom Jennings, WFCA’s vice president of development.

In a related announcement, CFI has opened a new 10,000 sq. ft. installation training facility in Forney, Texas, about 21 miles east of Dallas. This new facility will be able to accommodate workshops and classes for all types and levels of installation training and certification. “The Dallas-area location is projected to be the first leg of a larger plan to bring CFI training and certification to other markets across the U.S.,” the WFCA stated.

To start, the school will be offering R1C1 courses in carpet certification; one- and two-week classes in every category of hard surface; and an extensive course on carpet installation that will turn entry-level individuals into professional residential carpet installers in just five weeks, CFI said.

The school will also offer new one-week advanced commercial installation workshops as well as classes on pattern correction, woven carpet and specialty products. In addition to the programs offered through the school, CFI will also continue with regional training programs throughout the country.

Additionally, Varden said CFI will enhance its recruitment efforts. “We are tapping into targeted demographic groups such as veterans and high school vocational groups, who we feel would be great candidates for this field.”

The CFI has announced it will be holding its next convention Nov. 12-14, in Dallas. This year’s event is set to include “extensive daily installation seminars and hands-on workshops taught by leading industry professionals, as well as numerous networking opportunities with executives and colleagues across the country,” the association noted.

For more information, visit cfiinstallers.org

Wagner Meters Offers Updated Webinar

Wagner Meters is offering the recently updated online course, “Moisture Testing of Concrete Floor Slabs.” This training webinar is especially designed for contractors and flooring installers, and is presented by Howard Kanare, a leading expert in concrete moisture issues.

Kanare, a former senior principal scientist for the Portland Cement Association’s Laboratory (CTLGroup), shares breakthrough scientific data regarding methods for moisture testing of concrete slabs. The one-hour webinar includes a live question-and-answer session.

The updated, online course is now being offered twice monthly. Early registration is encouraged and can be done online at www.wagnermeters.com/webinar.

INSTALL Announces Texas Expansion

INSTALL, which said it has had Texas marked as a strategic next step in its expansion plan for years, recently held an open house at the existing North Texas Training Center at 1901 Susan Drive in Arlington. Welcoming INSTALL staff and instructors, contractors, installers and manufacturer representatives, the event celebrated the INSTALL curriculum being brought to the Texas location for the first time.

“Texas is the most vibrant market in the country and it’s booming with projects and available workforce,” said John McGrath, INSTALL executive director. “We want to get those workers trained and certified so they can deliver quality commercial flooring installations to the Texas market.”

Representatives from manufacturers and mills including Ardex, Armstrong Flooring, Gerflor, H.B. Fuller, HP Schonox, Halex, Mohawk, nora, Shaw and Tarkett/Johnsonite were in attendance for the open house.

For more information, visit installfloors.org.

Laticrete-Sponsored Joey Ternullo Wins Race

Laticrete announced that Joey Ternullo won the Legend Car race at Waterford Speedbowl’s earlier this year.

Ternullo is the son of Middletown Ceramic Tile Co.’s Joe Ternullo. Middletown Ceramic Tile Company has been using Laticrete materials and methods for over 50 years.

Laticrete has sponsored Ternullo in his Legend Car for the past few years. A Legend Car is a five-eighths scale replica of a pre-World War II coupe car and can reach 80 miles per hour. 

AccuTec Blades Acquires EPC Industrial Blades Division

AccuTec Blades Inc. has announced the acquisition of Edgewell Personal Care Company’s (EPC) Industrial Blades division. EPC announced in May 2015 its intent to discontinue its industrial blade operations in Verona, Virginia and Obregon, Mexico.

EPC acquired the Industrial Blades division in a deal with American Safety Razor in 2011. EPC will be retaining the Personna brand and will continue to market wet shaving products under this name, only divesting the Industrial Blades business in this sale.

DMU Provides Focused Education for Maximizing Sales and Profitability

The 2015 Distribution Management University (DMU) will be held in conjunction with the NAFCD + NBMDA Annual Convention, on Tuesday, Nov. 3 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Hilton Orlando.

The 2015 DMU is a unique opportunity for general, sales, branch and operations managers to expand their industry knowledge and enhance leadership skills. The 2015 DMU is focused on the real world of the market level manager. Sessions are designed to be fast-paced, interactive and fun, and provide real tools to grow profit and market share.

Bob Langdon, author of Managing Your Business for Profit, will lead the 2015 DMU. Since beginning his consulting practice in 1983, Langdon has been assisting business owners in achieving their sales and financial goals.

In this program, Langdon will show attendees proven techniques to increasing gross margin, cash flow and return on investment, while retaining their best customers. They will learn how to calculate break-even for their business and how to prepare alternative financial forecasts for their business.

For more information, visit distributorconvention.org.

Keene Building Products’ Gets Website Makeover

Keene Building Products’ has revealed the new and modern KeeneBuilding.com. The site is fully responsive, faster, easier to navigate and more user-friendly. There are many highlights of the new site, including the ability to visit any individual product page in two clicks. Just select ‘Products’ at the top to see a list of all the products in the line.

The site also offers customized pages for architects, contractors and developers; resources and education; a search box; project profiles; Keene blogs The Quiet Guy and The Dri Guy; and links to Keene’s family of companies: Cansto Coatings and Dependable.

Individual product pages include photos, videos, downloadable files and a quick way to reach Keene if there are any questions or need for additional information.

Custom Introduces Commercial Installation Systems Guide

Custom Building Products recently published the Custom Commercial Installation Systems Guide, a resource for architects, specifiers, designers and contractors. The guide provides guidance on how to confidently select the right system of surface preparation, setting, grouting and care products for tile projects across a variety of applications including healthcare, hospitality, commercial kitchens, retail, transportation, entertainment, commercial, intuitional, government and public works.

The Custom Commercial Installation Systems Guide features detailed information on its products and systems in the context of specific building types or end-use applications, including typical challenges like high point loads, extreme soil situations, fast track timelines, how to qualify for Custom’s System Warranties and common considerations such as waterproofing, sound attenuation, uneven subfloors, chemical exposure, crack isolation, stain resistance, color consistency, exterior conditions and more.

All product recommendations—which may include categories that are new to the user—are based on ANSI standards, the company noted.

Ardex Canada Project Receives Top Honors

Ardex Canada received Project of the Year and Best Technical Product Application at the Terrazzo, Tile and Marble Association of Canada’s (TTMAC) 72nd Annual Convention Hardsurface Awards Gala recently.

“Many people contributed to this project. This is a team victory and a supreme honor,” said Don Brletic, western regional manager, Ardex Canada. “Metroworks Tile and Stone used Ardex products purchased through Fontile and Pacific Rim and the Ardex Canada team supported every phase of the installation.”

Principal Shawn Perepelytz of Metroworks Tile and Stone used Ardex X 77 Microtec Fiber Reinforced Tile and Stone Mortar, Ardex AM 100 Rapid Set Pre-Tile Smoothing and Ramping Mortar, along with Ardex SX 100% Silicone Sealant for Tile and Stone Applications for the various complex tile installations at a modern, private residence in Vancouver, BC.

The TTMAC Hardsurface Awards recognize and highlight terrazzo, tile and natural stone installations submitted by trade contractors, material suppliers, architects, designers, specifiers and builders.

Bissler, Reeve Earn FCICA’s CIM Certification

FCICA has announced James Bissler and Bruce Reeve are now credentialed as a Certified Installation Manager (CIM), the only certification program for commercial flooring installation managers.

Bissler and Reeve were both awarded this designation for the successful completion of all eight modules of learning and related assessments with the required passing score. The CIM program is an online certification program specifically developed for and available to all who want to obtain the knowledge necessary to become a Certified Installation Manager and learn the important skills required of that position, regardless of their affiliations.

To find out more, visit fcica.com/training-program.

Bostik’s New Video Showcases Ed Begley, Jr.’s Home

Ed Begley, Jr., features in Bostik’s new video highlighting the actor’s LEED Platinum home. Bostik has produced a new video featuring well-known green activist and actor Ed Begley, Jr. In it, he speaks of why Ultra-Set SingleStep2 was the ideal wood flooring installation product for his LEED Platinum home. This video is easily seen by visiting: http://bit.ly/Bostik-EdBegley.

Philadelphia Floor Store Launches ‘Lessons Learned’ Blog

Philadelphia Floor Store (PFS) recently launched a new “Lessons Learned” blog series. The company developed the idea for the series in the wake of a fire earlier this year that completely destroyed their main headquarters and distribution center. The goal is to help other small business owners avoid insurance pitfalls and be prepared should disaster strike.

After what the company has been through these past few months, PFS feels an obligation to educate contractors and other small business owners and help them avoid some of the common (and not so common) pitfalls related to insurance coverage and disaster recovery.

Continuing their mission to inform and educate, the company will take a “deep dive” into insurance coverage as it relates to small businesses and examine some of the common mistakes business owners make. Blog posts will focus on everything from making sure business owners have the proper insurance coverage, to how to develop a disaster recovery plan.

Read the series at blog.phillyfloor.com/posts/training-and-education/lessons-learned.

Experts to Judge in the Schönox Worst Subfloor in NA Contest

HPS Schönox has asked flooring professionals to “Show us your worst and how you made it your best” with the opening of its second annual Schönox Worst Subfloor in North America Contest. A three-judge panel of independent industry experts was recently announced.

Tom Jennings (World Floor Covering Association) Dean Thompson (Resilient Floor Covering Institute) and Robert Varden (International Certified Floorcovering Installers Association) will judge contest entries in an impartial manner that includes having all identifying information removed from the entry with only the photos and project notes provided for their review. Judging will begin after December 11, the deadline for contest submissions.

The judges will review photos submitted by contest entrants showing the before and after conditions of the subfloor along with details of how the project was executed. The contest entries will be independently judged with first, second, and third place winners based on the severity of the original subfloor’s condition, the skill and attention to detail taken in executing the project, and the quality of the finished subfloor.

The contest runs through December 11 with winners to be announced at TISE (The International Surface Event) in Las Vegas in 2016. Entries can be submitted at hpsubfloors.com/worstsubfloor.

Ceramic Tile and Stone Consultants Update Website

Ceramic Tile and Stone Consultants (CTaSC) announced the launch of its new website at CtaSC.com. While the website address is the same, the content, features and resources have been improved.

The updated CTaSC website features an extensive menu of services including forensic investigations, quality control, testing, training, marketing and business planning, and more.

In addition to its business services, the website provides resources for companies in the tile and stone industries as well as some for consumers, including: Resource Directory, Industry Statistics, Economic Indicators and Forecasts, Industry Research Reports, Expert Answers, Training Services, and Events.

CRCII, LMCCA and PCRA Sign Memorandum of Understanding

Three long-time professional associations formalized an agreement recently that the organization’s leaders say will lead to stronger ties, shared resources and cross-membership.

The signing of the Memorandum of Understanding means greater organizational stability and growth for the Carpet & Rug Cleaners Institute of Illinois (CRCII), the Low Moisture Carpet Cleaning Association (LMCCA) and the Professional Cleaning and Restoration Alliance (PCRA), said LMCCA president Lonnie McDonald.

The Memorandum of Understanding includes, but is not limited to, the ability to promote each other’s respective associations and providing mutual technical support. Notably, all members of each association also become members in all three associations.

The MOU goes into effect immediately.

MIA Accreditation Program Reaches 100-Member Milestone

The Marble Institute of America (MIA) accreditation program has reached the milestone of 100 accredited locations in North America. Sims-Lohman in Zionsville, Ind., and Pittsburgh, Pa., were the 99th and 100th member locations to earn MIA Accreditation. Several companies are nearing completion of the accreditation process, meaning that MIA will have over 100 accredited locations by the end of 2015.

MIA Accreditation Commission Chair Rodney Harvey looks forward to what this milestone means for the program. “The future of the MIA Accreditation program is very bright, as the number of accredited companies in each category (Natural Stone Fabricator, Commercial “A” Contractor and Commercial “B” Contractor) are expected to experience continued growth to meet the needs of the consumers, the construction market and the design community.”

Steve Steinman, owner of Sims-Lohman, said, “We view MIA as the gold standard in the stone industry, so it was important for us to earn MIA Accreditation.” Sims-Lohman also has MIA Accredited locations in Cincinnati and Columbus, Ohio.

Earning MIA Accreditation means a company has gone through a rigorous application process and is held to the highest industry standard available. MIA Accredited companies are reviewed to ensure best business practices are in place, tested on proper fabrication and installation methods and inspected to ensure safety, fabrication, and installation standards are met. To learn more about the MIA Accreditation program, and to see a full list of MIA Accredited companies, visit www.marble-institute.com/gettheseal.

New Hires and Promotions 

ISSA (the Worldwide Cleaning Industry Association) has appointed John Barrett as executive director. Barrett replaces John Garfinkel, who will work in a consultative capacity through 2016 to facilitate a smooth transition. Barrett has served as an ISSA board member for the past six years, with the last three as an officer, serving this year as treasurer.

Laticrete has promoted its national accounts manager Ken Madison, adding Daltile and Florida Tile to his existing accounts of Lowes and Floor & Décor. With this promotion, Madison will continue to report to director of sales, North America, Rob Smith and will maintain responsibility for his existing national accounts.

Eric Edelmayer has joined MAPEI Americas as business development manager for sheet membranes. Edelmayer has been in the tile industry for over 30 years, specializing in sheet membranes for waterproofing, crack isolation and sound reduction. Before joining MAPEI, Edelmayer was the director of contractor services with Noble Co.

UFloor Systems Inc. recently announced that James Ammer joined the Wolff team as a technical sales representative for the southeastern U.S. Ammer’s experience in the floor covering industry spans more than 15 years, with 10 of those years operating his own company: Ammer Flooring.

Upcoming Events

FCICA Mid-Year Meeting – New Castle, Del., Oct. 7-9. www.fcica.com

TISE East 2015– Orlando, Fla., Nov. 2-5. www.tiseeast.com

NAFCD/NBMDA Convention – Orlando, Fla., Nov. 3-5. www.distributorconvention.org

CFI 2015 Convention – Dallas, Nov. 12-14. www.cfiinstallers.org

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