Tom Vaughn of Akona LLC was named the 2006 NTCA Tile Person of the Year.

Tile contractors from across the country met at the Las Vegas Hilton, Sept. 14-16, for Total Solutions 2006, the annual meeting of the National Tile Contractor's Association (NTCA). In addition to the program of educational conferences offered, there was a tabletop networking event which featured more than 55 companies, as well as a special awards ceremony.

Outgoing NTCA president Don Scott (r.) passed the gavel to incoming president Frank Canto during the NTCA awards banquet.
A variety of educational seminars related to the ceramic tile industry were offered during the conference, featuring some of the top experts in the industry. Donato Grosser, an internationally recognized consultant in the ceramic tile industry, examined the current state of the industry and offered predictions about its future. Eric Astrachan, executive director of the Tile Council of North America (TCNA), explained the changes to the 2007 TCNA Handbook for the Installation of Ceramic Tile. Scott Fleming, Bill Klaser and Greg Andrews conducted a seminar on glass tile, in which Fleming discussed the ANSI A108 standards on glass tile installation: Klaser and Andrews concluded the session with illustrated descriptions of their award-winning glass tile installations.

Several notable awards were handed out during the three-day event, including the Tile Person of the Year, two Ring of Honor inductees and a Best Practices award. Tom Vaughn of Akona LLC received the 2006 NTCA Tile Person of the Year award, which recognizes the recipient's contribution to the industry of ceramic tile, stone and related products, as well as the recipient's efforts and commitments to NTCA. Vaughn was joined by his wife Maureen, daughter Kathy and mother June for the surprise presentation.

Scott Carothers, outgoing NTCA chairman (l.) and Bart Bettiga, NTCA executive director (r.) congratulate Tom Vaughn of Akona LLC (center) on winning 2006 NTCA Tile Person of the Year. With Tom, from right are wife Maureen, mother June and daughter Kathy.
Tom Ade of Filling Marble and Tile in Cologne, NJ and Harvey Powell, formerly of the Noble Company, were the recipients of the third annual NTCA Ring of Honor. A deserving contractor and affiliate member are each awarded with a ring that is emblazoned with the NTCA logo, in recognition of their service to NTCA throughout their career.

Davis Leichsenring of Holland Tile in Rockvilla, MD, was the latest recipient of the NTCA Best Practices Award for Membership Service, given to an individual who goes above and beyond the call of duty to promote education and NTCA membership in his or her region.