A record-breaking number of people from every sector of the flooring industry attended the 24th Annual Certified Floorcovering Installers Association (CFI) Convention in Orlando, Fla. Installers, retailers, inspectors, manufacturers, and others attended the three-day event, where Robert Varden, vice president of CFI, welcomed attendees and thanked sponsors for their support in promoting education within the flooring industry.

The convention included a “who’s who” line-up of industry speakers. Scott Humphrey, CEO of WFCA, presented “Leadership Strategies That Work,” focused on guiding industry teams successfully through a rapidly changing business environment. Varden provided presentations on CFI’s international reach, including the opening of the new CFI Division in Shanghai, China, and ongoing training with Beaulieu de Brazil, and other programs. Paul Pleshek of the National Academy for Floor Covering Training presented “Third Party Inspections: Biased or Beneficial?” and Jeff King, general counsel for the WFCA, addressed the question “Are You Ready for an Immigration Raid or Audit?”

The convention also included ample networking and training opportunities, as well as the Associate Showcase, an expo highlighting new products and tools from numerous flooring manufacturers. Attendees experienced hands interaction with the latest tools and products as well as opportunities to talk with developers behind new technologies that are changing the face of installation.

The convention concluded with the CFI Annual Awards Dinner, at which several industry leaders were honored for their achievements. The Chris Davis Award, given each year to an individual who stands out in his or her efforts to promote quality installation and support across the flooring industry, was presented to Rick Herr from Armstrong World Industries. The Gress Award was given to Dwayne Pruitt of Pruitt Flooring in Wichita, Kan. The Walk of Excellence Award, was presented to John McHale and Jill Sheets of CFI for their outstanding achievement and all around excellence.

Next year marks CFI Convention’s 25th anniversary and will take place Aug. 15-17 in Orlando, Fla.

For more information, visit www.cfiinstallers.com.