8:00 am - 10:00 am

Stone Trends 2011
Speaker: Vince Marazita, Marazita & Associates
From countertops to skyscrapers, the use of natural stone is booming in the USA. Get an overall view of the market and market trends by attending this TWELVE ANNUAL “State of the Industry” presentation on the dimensional stone market in the USA. This session will cover information, sourcing, marketing and application trends in the Stone Industry over the last year, including examples of award winning projects that have been recognized for their use of natural Stone.

Fabricators Forum
Moderator: GK Naquin, Stone Interiors
Panelist: Tony Malisani, Malisani Inc; Michael Twiss, Columbia Stone, Inc.; Brett Rugo, Rugo Stone LLC, Natural Stone & Mosaic Contractors
This open forum is designed for fabricators to get answers to questions or problems they may have with regard to being successful in today’s business economy. In today’s business climate diversification is a critical step many fabricators are taking. This panel is well versed in both residential and commercial topics and what it takes to be successful in both arenas. Costs, stone supplier relationships, collections, employee development, and meeting customer expectations are just a few of the business-related topics that will be part of the panel discussion.

8:00 am - 9:00 am

Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Membranes but Were Afraid to Ask
Speakers: Representatives from MMSA and NTCA
The Materials and Methods and Standards Association, (MMSA) is comprised of allied manufacturers of tile and stone installation systems, with the purpose of establishing standards of quality and performance of materials and methods for installation and use of ceramic tile and dimensional stones. In this presentation, representatives of MMSA will discuss major components of various types of membranes and their uses and benefits. Particular attention to waterproofing and crack isolation membranes will be given, with discussion and live demonstrations of their applications taking place. The National Tile Contractors Association is also active in the development of national standards and methods, and will participate in the session from a contractor’s perspective. New language to our industry standards will be explained to the audience as well.

NTCA Contractors Forum: Part One
Speakers: Bart Bettiga, National Tile Contractors Association; Nyle Wadford, Neuse Tile Service; James Woelfel, Artcraft Granite, Marble & Tile Co.
The Contractors Forum: Part One will focus on the year in review in relation to new developments in the industry in standards and methods as it relates to tile and stone installation. Topics will include discussion on the new stone supplement to the TCA Handbook, Working with and understanding both ISO and ANSI Installation standards, Medium Bed Mortars, Large Format Tile Installations and More.

Distributor and Retailer Featured Session: I Can See Clearly Now
Speaker: Jonathan Trivers, Marketing Wit and Wisdom
The rain and clouds have gone. There has been a clear consumer shift --New Normal, Spendshift or New Luxury -- all the result of the last three years. She is back in the market. We will discover where she is and what she wants -- and it's not just price!

Maximizing Sustainable Tile, Marble, and Terrazzo Solutions with Masonry
Speaker: Maria Viteri, AIA, LEED AP, International Masonry Institute
Successful green projects are not the creation of a single source. Instead success is maximized when all building and design related decisions are closely linked to identify sustainable outcomes. Integrated design solutions that identify and maximize the benefits of a building’s interior as well as its envelope will enable each project to adopt key benefits and communicate best practices for material decisions and installation. This seminar will show how tile, marble, and terrazzo systems provide direct and recognizable sustainable outcomes including meeting LEED guidelines for improving energy efficiency, addressing indoor air quality, and maintaining environmental stewardship. Just as importantly, this seminar will provide tips to manage communication throughout the course of a green project so as to assure maximizing the sustainable solution.

9:15-10:15 a.m.

Wholesale/Slab Distributors Forum
Moderator: Jonathan Zanger, Walker Zanger
Panelist: Rupish Shah, MS International; Others TBD
Back by popular demand! Join us for the 4th annual discussion of strategic issues critical to running successful wholesale/slab distribution companies. This open discussion will cover a host of operational issues including building strong fabricator relationships, networking with the design community, freight issues, and much more.

NTCA Contractors Forum: Part Two
Speakers: Bart Bettiga, National Tile Contractors Association; John Cox, Cox Tile, Inc.; and Jim Olson, National Tile Contractors Association
Part two of the Contractors Forum will focus on items related to business development for tile contractors. Topics discussed will be form letters to be used in communication with architects and general contractors, marketing programs for members, and continuing education programs for contractors to use with their customers.

Water Dynamics In Showers
Speakers: Don Halvorson and Greg Mowat, Forensic Tile Consultants
If you are working with showers then you need to know the physics of water. Learn about proper shower construction. Gain tips on working with prefabricated shower pans and bathtubs, as well as newer shower assemblies and methods. This seminar is a must for fabricators and installers as well as architects, designers and anyone who specifies or sells stone!

Designing with Tile in the Kitchen and Bath: Trends from Coast to Coast
Speaker: Alena Capra, CKD, CBD, NKBA Certified Kitchen and Bath Designer
This informative seminar will focus on creative use of tile in kitchen and bath design, and explore the tile trends of those two key rooms in the home from all areas of the country. Find out what's hot in Miami, what’s cool in New York, and everywhere in between! Alena Capra, a certified kitchen and bath designer with the National Kitchen and Bath Association, surveyed fellow kitchen and bath designers from across the nation to compile an exciting presentation of what's 'hot' and what's 'not' in tile from backsplashes to bath tub decks.

Strategies to Improve Market Share Over Competitive ProductsSpeaker: Patti Fasan, Professional Attention to Tile InstallationsInnovation in product design has been a major key to success in the ceramic tile sector. Research and experimentation have led to improved aesthetics, an exciting explosion of finishes and textures in conjunction with a parallel improvement in the technical qualities of tile. The consistent originality of new programs has contributed to increased market share and extended areas of use for tile. However, the chorus singing these attributes remains relatively small; what the ceramic tile sector needs is an industry wide choir.Attention to innovation must also be applied to the industry’s marketing and promotional efforts. Traditional marketing attempts to convince people to buy things they don’t need, with money they don’t have, to impress people who don’t care, simply will not work in today’s economy. Innovative methods instead seek to provide the consumer with authentic high value products and a meaningful, emotional and advantage based buying experience. These strategies skillfully accentuate the intrinsic strengths of ceramic and continually portray tile in unique, exotic and unexpected environments and applications.To provide every aggressive retailer with specific tools, an analysis across all flooring sectors will be presented along with strategies to strengthen ceramic tiles position as a premiere material finish choice. Discover several compelling ideas and concepts you will be able to employ to promote ceramic tile and capitalize on its future opportunities.

International Transportation / Customs Issues -Panel Discussion
Speakers: Mark D. Irwin, Savino Del Bene USA, Inc.; Rick Fantasia, Savino Del Bene USA, Inc.; Pietro Mancuso, Leonardi SpA
Join this comprehenisive discussion on specific techniques for optimizing international transportation costs, customs clearance related expenses and requirements. The panel will address how to optimize the purchasing of international transportation services; understanding and optimizing weight limitations, CTPAT designation; optimizing duty costs through proper U.S. Customs duty classification/biggest common mistakes; and minizing cargo insurance costs, when to buy and types of coverage.

Tile’s Role in Green Building in North America and Europe
Speakers: TBD
This session will provide an in-depth understanding of the relevance of tile to the green building movement. With a strong focus on building standards, including Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) and the International Green Construction Code (IgCC), it will explain how projects designed to these criteria can incorporate the use of tile. Additionally, this session will provide an overview of environmental tile product standards in North America and Europe and how such efforts endeavor to satisfy the needs of a dynamic green building marketplace.

10:30 am - 11:30 am

Specifying Ceramic Tile in Guestrooms: An Eco-Friendly, European Tradition Redefined
Speakers: Stacy Shoemaker, Hospitality Design, Others TBD
As the hospitality industry faces design challenges related to sustainability, indoor air quality, hygiene,design budgets, maintenance, bedbugs, and mold and other bacteria, a centuries-old European tradition offers design-centric solutions not widely seen in the U.S. From colorful tiled coastal resorts to chic boutique hotels, Europeans have long recognized the hospitality design potential of ceramic tile--not just in public spaces and baths--but in guestrooms and suites. A design-forward and intrinsically green material, ceramic tile now offers recycled content and is often produced under energy-efficient manufacturing standards. Through state-of-the-art case studies, panelists will showcase ceramic tile’s unlimited aesthetic potential and explain its key properties and benefits for hospitality.

LEED for Schools and the Use of Floor Coverings
Speaker: Nick Gigante, AIA, LEED AP, NCARB, BRPH architects & engineers
What are the benefits of building LEED registered schools? How can you incorporate tile and stone into LEED registered designs? This session will provide an understanding of the LEED System using tile and stone product and help you to educate potential clients, specifically education clients, in using tile and stone on projects. Highlights will include successful school projects and their use of tile or stone products. New and relevant technologies and products relevant to tile and stone design will also be discussed.

1:30 pm - 2:30 pm

Architecture and Design Featured Session: Understanding the Synergy between Designers and Contractors
Speaker: Ali Azhar, Alive Design and Host, HGTV’s Design on a Dime
To effectively execute a project, designers and contractors need to be on the same page – communicating effectively throughout the process. Without a clear understanding of the standard operating procedures of the design and installation phases, problems can arise. Ali Azhar of HGTV’s Design on a Dime, who has been on both sides of projects, will help create a better understanding of what it takes to pull a job together and meet deadlines, all while meeting the client’s needs. Ali will address how to select the right installation method for the right product. Do you know the degree of difficulty involved in your project and how that can affect completion time and the amount of material that must be ordered? When addressing client’s wants and needs, how do you identify the aesthetic requirements of a design plan, keeping in mind lead times, price point, durability, dye lots and batches from a quarry all while keeping installation requirements in mind? Take this opportunity to better understand the role of the designer and installer in your next project. The more you know, the more fluid and effective your process will be.

Marketing and Branding Your Installation Business
Speaker: Mike Farrar, Farrar Design
Learn the fine points of how to Market and brand your installation business. Learn who your customers really are! How they make decisions to hire a contractor, and what you need to do to grow your business. This session will show you how to develop a brand message, a simple logo and put all of it together in business cards, sales support materials, a web site, truck graphics and more.

2:45 pm - 3:45 pm

Stone Attachments – When to Adhere; and When to Anchor
Speaker: Chuck Muehlbauer, Marble Institute of America
A discussion addressing the grey area between adhering and mechanically anchoring stone veneers. Learn what are the key factors driving this sometimes difficult decision. This session will also address the types of anchors appropriate for the thinner varieties of stone.

Women in the Stone Business
Speakers/Panel: Chelsie Arnold, Marble & Granite; Rejeana Ellis, Affordable Stone Products Inc.; Nancy Epstein, Artistic Tile; and, Heidi Huber, SMG Stone Company
The panel of experienced professionals will share both opportunities and obstacles they have faced in their careers within the natural stone industry. After sharing their stories, the panel will open it up for questions so come prepared to share your common interests and network with other women in the natural stone industry. Employers, regardless of gender, will gain new insight into the challenges faced by women in our industry by attending this seminar.

Avoiding Costly Failures from Moisture and Water Damage
Speaker: Mike Daniels, MAPEI Corporation
This session will address the effective use of membranes to provide waterproofing and moisture protection for various tile installations, e.g.: residential and commercial interior/exterior floors, walls and facades, swimming pools, balconies, and plaza decks. The speaker will also discuss various types of membranes that are available and how to successfully apply them when using the most current TCA detail methods. Failures that can occur, when waterproofing or moisture control is either missing, neglected or incorrectly installed will also be discussed.

Tile over Tile Installations
Speaker: Representative of the National Tile Contractors Association
A method has long existed for successfully installing ceramic tile and natural stone over existing tile projects. Due to advancements in technology in both manufacturing of tile and tile and stone installation systems, many contractors are embracing this method with success. If installed properly, this method can be friendly to the environment, by minimizing dust and waste and can add profit and growth opportunities for our industry.

The Edge: The Latest Innovations in Tile
Speakers: Representatives of TCNA, Confindustria Ceramica; Patti Fasan, ASCER
Join this panel to get the latest on innovations in the ceramic tile industry. Learn about the leading edge technology and the evolving and changing formats of ceramic including photovoltaic, thin tiles, porcelain and “large format” will be addressed. Where is the industry headed technologically? Don’t miss this opportunity to see the future and bring your questions.

You Can’t Work Here With Your Pants Down to There: Working With Different Generations
Speaker: Linda Talley, Linda Talley & Associates, Inc
Are you a Baby Boomer trying to lead a staff/assistants who are Generation X? Or do you have Gen X clients? Or are you a Generation X trying to manage Boomer staff and customers? If you find yourself frequently frustrated with your 20 to 30-somethingish staff or 40 to 50 somethingish staff/customers/vendors, that’s not surprising. And by the way, Generation Y is now the biggest purchasers who will enter our lives and our businesses in the next 5 years. This is the first time in history that 4 generations have been in the workforce at the same time. Find out what makes one generation different from the previous generations.

Discover what changes you can make to your relationships/management style in order to create generation-friendly work environments. Learn what management styles won’t work with Gen X.Understand how shifting from directing to empowering is the only language Gen X & Y comprehends. And much, much more. . . You will never look at your kids that same way!

He Said - She Said
Speakers: Chip DuPont, FIIDA, FIDG, DuPont-O'Neil & Associates; Linda Corley, LCL Productions
He Said - She Said, a segment in their new TV series, is a high-energy, lively exchange, between presenters Chip and Linda with audience participation. The conflicts take the audience on a journey of varying needs and wants in an interactive learning style that will increase awareness of buyer variety and how to approach the conflict-resolution aspect needed to achieve sales and financial success. In this session, every opinion counts and adds to up to more dollars.

Urban Myths in Green Building Use of Stone and Tile
Speakers: Fred L Jackson, Estudio Group LLC
Today’s complex green market takes a clear understanding of all types of green standards most believe LEED is the only standard for rating green this myth is not true. Need to examine the NHBA Green Standard, Living building Challenge,Collobrotive for Healthy Schools, New ICC green standards in Development and others to access the the projected growth in this segment. Also clarifies other common misconceptions regarding stone, tile and other building materials and green standards. Plus covers the consumers view of green and why this is important to the survival of businesses today.