Welcome to Coverings 29th Edition!

President’s Letter – Coverings 2018

By all measures, this conference we now know as “Coverings” has exceeded expectations and helped to grow the ceramic tile market domestically. The use of tile over the years has continued to increase for many reasons, and Coverings has been a focal point for the industry at large. Its goal has been to bring together manufacturers of tile, setting materials, allied products and tools, along with the installation community to create many powerful synergies and cooperation. 

For 29 years, the trend in tile has been to expand in size from what was called “large-format” 8” x 8” to the 48” x 96” units on display at this year’s show. We’ve also seen the development of gauged porcelain panels/slabs as thin as 3.0mm, and 1.5m x 3.0m in facial dimension. While these size changes have created new and expanding uses for ceramic tile, its ability to replicate with great detail the look of natural stone, metal, fabric and even concrete in a variety of finishes has opened doors for expanded use.

I encourage each of us to make the most of our experience at Coverings by taking advantage of the tremendous educational offerings, including the free seminars and multiple demonstration and installation stages where the latest in materials and methods will be demonstrated almost every hour of the show. The Installation Design Showcase is back again this year with three new tiny houses being installed by craftspeople during the show for all to see and watch. This experience is designed so you can ask questions and learn from others how they approach their installation challenges. 

The Installation Experience is a “NEW” addition to the show this year. The inspiration for this pavilion came during our attendance at Cersaie last year. Assoposa, the Italian tile contractors’ association, put together a remarkable display of craftsmanship with their own version of an installation showcase that sparked our imagination. As you take a self-guided tour along the marked path, you’ll experience more than 20 different areas of tile installation. Each is meant to educate you on the difference between proper and improper installation methods, inspire your imagination with creativity that can be incorporated into your projects, and expose you to the very latest in technology, materials and methods.

All in all, there has never been more opportunity to learn, network and grow at Coverings so take advantage of all it has to offer. Your career and business will never be the same.

Keep on tiling!


Martin Howard,
President NTCA
Committee member, ANSI A108
[email protected]

Martin Howard
NTCA President, Executive Vice President of David Allen Company at |

Martin Howard is the 2017 - 2018 president of NTCA and the Executive Vice President of David Allen Company and is an owner of the company.

Martin oversees the Tile, Stone and Pre-Construction Divisions, including all branch operations. He has more than 36 years’ experience in the construction industry including 12 years in general contracting and 24 years in David Allen Company, where he has had management responsibilities in every area of the company’s tile and marble operation.