Coverings Deadline for Submissions, Nominations for Coveted 2020 Awards: December 20

Largest Tile and Stone Event in North America Kicks-off Two Annual Awards Competitions to Celebrate Outstanding Projects and Young Innovators. 

coverings logo

Coverings is now accepting applications for awards

ARLINGTON, Va. – Coverings (, the largest international tile and stone exhibition and conference in North America, is accepting submissions for both the 2020 Coverings Installation & Design (CID) Awards and Rock Star Awards. Submissions of tile and stone projects for entry to the CID Awards, and nominations of young professionals for Rock Star Awards, will be accepted online through Friday, Dec. 20, 2019, at 5 p.m. EST. Winners of both programs will be honored at award ceremonies during Coverings 2020, April 20-23, in New Orleans, Louisiana.

The two esteemed awards programs collectively acknowledge the tile and stone industry’s exceptional design and installation projects of the year, while celebrating the talent and innovation of emerging, young leaders in the profession.

“Both the CID Awards and Rock Stars showcase the dedication, creativity and leadership seen throughout the tile and stone industry,” said Jennifer Hoff, president of Taffy Event Strategies, the management company for Coverings. “The awards programs underscore Coverings’ ongoing commitment to support the growth and success of the industry.”

Coverings Installation & Design Awards 

The CID Awards celebrate outstanding design and installation in residential and commercial tile and stone projects. Architects, designers, builders, contractors, distributors, retailers, installers, and other industry professionals may submit their projects through the CID project submittal portal by or before the Dec. 20, 2019, 5 p.m. EST deadline.

Projects submitted for review will be judged and awarded using eight categorical designations: Residential Tile Installation, Residential Tile Design, Residential Stone Installation, Residential Stone Design, Commercial Tile Installation, Commercial Tile Design, Commercial Stone Installation, and Commercial Stone Design. Project entries are free of charge, and multiple entries are encouraged.

Each project will be evaluated by an independent panel of judges who will assess levels of creativity, craftsmanship and use of materials. The projects can be located internationally but must have been completed between January 2018 and December 2019 for review eligibility.

The eight category winners will be determined when the judging process has concluded in early 2020. Winners will receive a prize of $2,000 and their choice of a one-night stay in New Orleans during Coverings 2020, or an equivalent gift card. CID winners will also have their work recognized onsite at Coverings 2020 and on the Coverings website.

TileLetter, TILE Magazine, and Contemporary Stone & Tile Design are CID Awards sponsors.

Coverings Rock Stars 

The Coverings Rock Star program will again recognize emerging, young professional industry leaders. Nominations may be submitted by or before the Dec. 20, 2019, deadline using Coverings’ Rock Stars nomination form.

Qualifying nominees must be 35 years of age or younger and employed as one of the following professions: architect, designer, distributor, retailer, contractor/installer, fabricator, specifier, manufacturer, and/or trade association personnel.

Nominees are reviewed by a committee of industry leaders who evaluate the contenders’ experience levels; professional certifications or affiliations; previous awards or accolades; prior speaking engagements at industry events; quantity of published works; impact in the tile and stone industry; and what sets them apart as emerging leaders in the industry.

The winners will be recognized onsite at the annual Coverings Rock Stars Luncheon and receive their choice of a one-night stay in New Orleans during Coverings 2020, or an equivalent gift card; inclusion to a Coverings press release distributed to dozens of publications; an exclusive Rock Star badge ribbon; several programming opportunities at the show; and a year- long professional feature on Coverings’ website. A full list of 2019 winners can be seen on Coverings’ Rock Stars winners feature page.

For more information and to register for Coverings 2020, visit


Coverings Social Media: Facebook: Twitter: @Coverings, #Coverings2020 Instagram: YouTube: LinkedIn: RequestGroupInvite Blog: 

About Coverings: Coverings is the largest and most-significant ceramic tile and natural stone trade fair and exposition in the United States and North America. It features exhibitors from more than 40 countries and is the stage for introducing some of the most innovative tile and stone products in the world. 

The exposition and conference serve as a valuable and complimentary continuing education resource for all segments of the industry, with more than 50 educational opportunities throughout the show. Coverings attracts thousands of distributors, retailers, fabricators, contractors, specifies, architectural and design professionals, builders, real estate developers, as well as journalists, reporters and bloggers who cover the vital tile and stone industry. 

Sponsors of the show are Ceramics of Italy/Confindustria Ceramica, Ceramic Tile Manufacturers Association of Spain (ASCER), Tile Council of North America (TCNA), National Tile Contractors Association (NTCA), and Ceramic Tile Distributors Association (CTDA)

The show is managed by Taffy Event Strategies, LLC. 

Coverings 2020 takes place April 20-23, 2020, at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in New Orleans, Louisiana. 

For more information about attending, sponsoring or exhibiting at Coverings 2020, contact Taffy Event Strategies at 571-313-5801 or [email protected]


Announcing the Pantone Color of the Year 2020: PANTONE 19-4052 Classic Blue

Pantone color of the year classic blue

Instilling calm, confidence, and connection, this enduring blue hue highlights our desire for a dependable and stable foundation on which to build as we cross the threshold into a new era.

Pantone color of the year classic blue

Pantone Color of the Year 2020: Classic Blue 19-4052

A timeless and enduring blue hue, PANTONE 19-4052 Classic Blue is elegant in its simplicity. Suggestive of the sky at dusk, the reassuring qualities of the thought-provoking PANTONE 19-4052 Classic Blue highlight our desire for a dependable and stable foundation on which to build as we cross the threshold into a new era.

Imprinted in our psyches as a restful color, PANTONE 19-4052 Classic Blue brings a sense of peace and tranquility to the human spirit, offering refuge. Aiding concentration and bringing laser like clarity, PANTONE 19-4052 Classic Blue re-centers our thoughts. A reflective blue tone, Classic Blue fosters resilience. A red undertone imbues this tone with a feeling of energy and vibrancy. This universal color is relatable around the world and in different cultures.

“We are living in a time that requires trust and faith,” said Leatrice Eiseman, Executive Director of the Pantone Color Institute. “It is this kind of constancy and confidence that is expressed by PANTONE 19-4052 Classic Blue, a solid and dependable blue hue we can always rely on. Imbued with a deep resonance, Classic Blue provides an anchoring foundation. A boundless blue evocative of the vast and infinite evening sky, Classic Blue encourages us to look beyond the obvious to expand our thinking; challenging us to think more deeply, increase our perspective and open the flow of communication. ”

As technology continues to race ahead of the human ability to process it all, it is easy to understand why we gravitate to colors that are honest and offer the promise of protection. Non-aggressive and easily relatable, the trusted PANTONE 19-4052 Classic Blue lends itself to relaxed interaction. Associated with the return of another day, this universal favorite is comfortably embraced.

About Pantone Color of the Year

For over 20 years, Pantone’s Color of the Year has influenced product development and purchasing decisions in multiple industries, including fashion, home furnishings, and industrial design, as well as product packaging and graphic design.

The Pantone Color of the Year selection process requires thoughtful consideration and trend analysis. To arrive at the selection each year, Pantone’s color experts at the Pantone Color Institute comb the world looking for new color influences. This can include the entertainment industry and films in production, traveling art collections and new artists, fashion, all areas of design, popular travel destinations, as well as new lifestyles, playstyles, and socio-economic conditions. Influences may also stem from new technologies, materials, textures, and effects that impact color, relevant social media platforms and even upcoming sporting events that capture worldwide attention.

THF recognizes Grazzini Brothers & Company for assistance with Global Hand Print Mural

NTCA Five Star Contractor Grazzini Brothers & Company of St. Paul, Minn.,  had a hand print-making workshop for its staff this past autumn for the Global Monumental Hand Print Mural project, spearheaded by the Tile Heritage Foundation (THF).

In preparation, volunteers from Grazzini spent Saturday, Sept. 21st with ceramist Josh Blanc at his studio (Clay Squared to Infinity) in Minneapolis where he volunteered to make the 9″x9″x3/4″ wet clay blanks with them for the project. Josh also fired the finished tiles. The Grazzini staff made hand prints during company-wide workshops for the Global Mural between the end of September and early October.

Grazzini hand print workshop

Grazzini Brothers & Company participates in the Global Monumental Hand Print Mural project with a hand-print making workshop at its location last fall.

These tiles will eventually join the hundreds more staged at TCNA (Tile Council of North America). Eventually all of the Global Hand Print tiles from all over the country and beyond will be installed at TCNA for posterity. The Global Tile Industry, “You Have a Hand In It,” supports the ongoing tile industry archiving work of the Tile Heritage Foundation, which greatly appreciate EVERYONE’s support who has participated.

It is STILL possible to have “a hand in it” through 2020. here is an opportunity for companies to have a legacy Hand Print Tile produced FOR their company!  Visit for details.

Louisville Tile Distributors receive recognition at TSP

The National Tile Contractors Association (NTCA) recognized long-time supporter Louisville Tile Distributors at Total Solutions Plus (TSP), held at the end of October in Nashville, Tenn.

During the TSP award ceremony, NTCA Executive Director Bart Bettiga presented Robert DeAngelis, President of Louisville Tile, with an award recognizing the distributor’s support of tile industry training and education programs.

Robert DeAngelis (l) with Bart Bettiga at the Total Solutions Plus award ceremony.

Robert DeAngelis (l) with Bart Bettiga at the Total Solutions Plus award ceremony.

Louisville Tile, headquartered in Louisville, Ky., is a leading distributor of tile installation products and sundry items for tile installers. Currently, the distributor has 13 showrooms, located in Kentucky, Tennessee, Indiana, Ohio, and Michigan.

“NTCA realizes that without the support of distributors and manufacturers we would be limited in what we do to positively impact the industry,” Bettiga said. “It’s because of this reason we decided to thank and honor the leaders at Louisville Tile Distributors for their continued support of our programs.”

For several years, Louisville Tile has hosted and sponsored NTCA workshops at all of its locations. At many of these events, the distributor goes a step further by purchasing copies of the NTCA Reference Manual and the TCNA Handbook for Ceramic, Glass, and Stone Tile Installation and the offering them to attendees. DeAngelis said he felt it was important that attendees left with these resources saying, “That puts the power of first-hand knowledge in their hands.”  

DeAngelis said while it was nice to be recognized for Louisville Tile’s efforts support NTCA, he felt in reality it was NTCA that was supporting Louisville Tile in its education efforts. Two years ago, Louisville Tile leaders decided that in addition to being a workshop sponsor, they would also sponsor and host NTCA Regional Training Programs in effort to expand the ways they provided specialized training to local installers and their customers. Louisville Tile even added an additional member to its team in order to be able to offer more training. “By adding Marc Mularoni –our Director of Technical Sales– as a full time technical person, we added a person with the dedicated ability to step up our educational offerings in partnership with NTCA, CTEF, and other industry resources,” DeAngelis said.

Bettiga offered the distributor his sincere thanks for its support and efforts over the years and hopes its example will encourage other distributors to do the same. “Louisville Tile offers us an example of the difference an independent distributor can make in the industry through its support of installer certification, training and education,” he remarked.

DeAngelis also commented about the importance of being an industry education sponsor. “Our business is driven by the tile installation trade and businesses,” DeAngelis noted.  “It is more than a contribution to our industry; it is a necessity for continued health, growth and improvement of the tile trades that support our industry.”

ALPHA introduces PSC-600 Pneumatic Stone Cutter

There is no doubt that the electric angle grinder is the most popular portable power tool in stone fabrication. It is normal to see such grinders being used in almost all stone fabrication shops, whether creating dust or blowing dust into a vacuum system.

Alpha angle grinder

The Alpha® PSC-600 Pneumatic Stone Cutter

The new Alpha PSC-600 is a high-performance wet pneumatic stone cutter that will set a new “normal” in stone fabrication shops. It is common knowledge that electric power tools don’t last very long due to the stone dust or the water splash which damages them easily. This is why most of the polishers nowadays are pneumatic-driven polishers. The PSC-600 comes with a very unique center water-feed system to deliver ample water on the both sides of the diamond blade, which will keep the dust down on the floor and also enhance the performance and life of the diamond blade.

In addition, the end case is made with a composite material to prevent freezing by the rear exhaust system, which is a common issue for hands, for greater operator comfort.

The Alpha PSC-600 is smaller and lighter than electric angle grinders and offers better maneuverability along with all the safety features. This turn-key operation stone cutter comes with 15 ft. all–weather hoses and a convenient water quick coupler with shut off valve.

Although the Alpha PSC-600 is primarily designed for stone cutting applications, it can also be used as a grinding or sanding tool with a 7/8” arbor. For grinding applications, a second inner flange is included as a standard accessory. This second inner flange will direct the water to come out of the water channels on the outer flange, which optimizes the water distribution necessary for heavy material removal.

Visit or phone 800-648-7229 for more information.

Alpha introduces AIR-830 & AIR-850 Pneumatic Polishers

The Alpha® Air polisher set a standard as the pneumatic polisher with a center water feed many years ago and changed how stone fabricators polish the edges of hard surfaces. Since then competitors have copied the design in various ways just emphasizing the high Alpha® standard.

two air-polishers from ALPHA

ALPHA Air-Polishers


The latest Alpha AIR-830 and AIR-850 Pneumatic Polishers will make the polishing operation easier than ever. These two models have different maximum RPMs to cover all fabricators who want to create the best polish and/or want to improve their productivities and efficiencies.

Both polishers equipped with a newly developed motor with a 5 Hybrid composite vane design that outputs more power and last longer than their predecessor. The polishers come with new splash guards which block the splash while providing better visibility.

The end case was also re-designed to improve the water and air control operation and minimize the risk of breakage. In addition, a silicon boot for the gear head, and water quick coupler with shut off valve, adds comfort and convenience.

The Alpha polishers always come with an enhanced spindle shaft and full size wrenches for easy tool removal. The all-weather air and water hoses are 15ft. and rated for -40°F or +140°F. The AIR-830 has a maximum no-load RPM of 4,400 and the AIR-850 has 5,500.

Alpha is proud to show off these new tools as it is wasn’t easy to make best polisher better! For more information, visit or phone 800-648-7229.


Element Dallas Downtown East location provides high-end hospitality experience with custom design aesthetics from Marazzi

The lobby of the Element Hotel features a custom installation of Classentino Marble in Imperial Brown and Corinth Beige.

When the doors of the Element Dallas Downtown East publicly opened in December 2018, not only were visitors to Dallas offered a high-end hospitality experience, but they were also greeted with an outside-of-the-box approach to the design of the short-stay hotel experience. 

Prior to this location’s conversion, it provided senior citizens a place to rest their heads as the Baylor University Medical Center’s Memory Care Center. The journey from healthcare to high-end hospitality is one that required a ground-up approach and custom curation to strike the right balance of accommodations and internationally-inspired finishes to delight the business and entertainment-focused guests, alike.

The building’s owners, brothers Salim and Perry Molubhoy, own and manage more than 20 high-end hotels across the United States and saw this location as a challenge to bring a unique hospitality experience to the Dallas area. Salim Molubhoy oversaw the more-than-two-year building transformation beginning with demolition down to the structure’s concrete, and rebuild of the hotel. With one of the primary goals of this Element location being to remove the feeling of a prototypical short-stay hotel, so much time and planning was dedicated to designing bright and dynamic spaces where details feel thoughtfully hand-picked.

Element Hotel, Dallas, TX exterior façade.

Given the nature of the building being hospitality with high-traffic, the Molubhoy brothers knew durability would be key, making tile the best solution for the central surfaces. After being presented with several tile options by their interior designer, the brothers ultimately opted for Marazzi over a different brand because of the total amount of options as well as a previous partnership. Salim Molubhoy raved about the customer service he experienced with Jarrod Smyth, the Anaheim Branch Manager for Marazzi, thus beginning the process for materials selection. The Anaheim team hosted Molubhoy, and in one day, he selected all the tile needed for the project.

The hotel’s dining area features a custom installation
of Classentino Marble in Imperial Brown and Corinth Beige.

The hotel’s elevator bank wall features Classentino Marble Classic Weave Mosaic, complemented by Classentino Marble in Imperial Brown and Corinth Beige on the floor.

“Jarrod provided the ultimate in customer service,” said Salim Molubhoy. “Personalized service is key and the fact that Marazzi not only provides the bold, internationally-inspired designs I’m looking for, but that the sales team is available at all hours, goes so far in continuing the excellent impression,” he continued.

Upon entry, guests immediately notice Classentino Marble™ on the lobby floors. This particular collection provides the bold, realistic look of marble in a porcelain tile for the durability the design team was seeking for a busy hotel entrance. 

Classentino Marble is what Marazzi calls, a Colorbody™ Porcelain, which means that the tiles are created with continuous colored stains from the glaze surface throughout the body of the tile. This is important for high traffic areas in the case of any impact chipping that may occur, visibility will be lessened due to the consistent color throughout. 

As guests make their way to the second floor lobby, they encounter Castellina™ Trellis that adorns the wall behind the buffet. This stunning natural stone offering features a combination of stone and porcelain mosaics, with contemporary color tones. Attractive patterns vitalize with beautiful abstract shapes. A curated selection of elegant mosaic patterns brings bold design complementing the entry flooring.

Hotel lobby featuring a custom installation of Classentino
Marble in Imperial Brown and Corinth Beige.

As guests progress to their rooms, they are visually impacted by the stunning Classentino Marble Weave Mosaic that accents the elevators which distinguish it from other area hotels. “People love it” says Salim Molubhoy. “Whenever people come in they love the wow factor.”

Not only are the Marazzi collections featured front-and-center for guests to enjoy, but these bold palettes and timeless designs are also featured in the Hotel Penthouse. “I am a big fan of great products and as a world traveler I want guests to enjoy the best,” added Salim Molubhoy. 

The Penthouse features Materika™ and boasts muted, powdery hues of concrete fashioned into elegant 16″ x 48″ over-sized wall embellishments with a texture for added visual intrigue. Castellina Diamond natural stone mosaic enhances the drama for a dramatic accent wall with classic design.

Cafe area feature wall showing Castellina Trellis in Gray.

In total, more than 8,300 sq. ft. of Marazzi tile is featured in the hotel in both floor and wall applications, pushing the envelope on tile capabilities and capturing the form and function with exceptional quality.

Located within a brief walk of Downtown Dallas lies one of the newest hotels in the area – with a history all its own. The public response has been positive since the public opening in December. The hotel is a comfortable setting for business and leisure travelers alike who want to feel at home in modern accommodations. Molubhoy and staff invite you to visit and enjoy your stay as you travel for business or explore Downtown Dallas during your next trip.

Backsplash features Castellina Modern Arabesque in Gray and Fawn.

K&S Flooring Pierre, S.D.

Enthusiasm and chutzpah lead to satisfying installation career

Enthusiasm for the trade, and the willingness to go outside one’s comfort zone, are two qualities that bring immeasurable value to a tile setter’s career path and success.

Kylor Knox

Kylor Knox, owner of K&S Flooring in Pierre, S.D., got his start working as a warehouse manager at a local flooring store. He had a burning passion for learning about the flooring industry. When he went online to learn more, the first thing that he encountered was NTCA University – which led him to join the association three years ago. 

Knox sought information wherever he could find it. He went to Schluter trainings, and then to Portland for an ARDEX training. He discovered the Ceramic Tile Education Foundation (CTEF) and the vast resources it offers for someone starting out. 

He learned that the store he was working at was going to have a shortage of installers and he wanted to learn the trade at the hands of an experienced installer. He asked some local installers to mentor him, and was excited when most of them said yes. When push came to shove, though, no one really came through with the help he needed.

Not to be deterred, he connected with John Roberts, who was one of his CTEF instructors. Roberts recommended Knox call someone from the CTEF site. That’s where he found an installer to mentor him, and he wound up working with him and his wife for a while, and continues to reach out to area installers to see if he can help with projects to hone his skills.

About a year ago – Knox also became the South Dakota State Ambassador. “I saw the need for more education in South Dakota,” he said. 

Knox proudly displays the NTCA logo along with his own on his truck.

“I have jumped in head first, and have been learning from all my mistakes,” Knox said. “How else do you learn? The thing that sets me apart is I’m willing to go outside of my comfort zone and try something new.”

Knox specializes in residential installs right now – both new and remodels. Joshua Nordstrom has also inspired and encouraged him to take on more mosaic projects as well.  

With the high value he’s put on education and training, Knox wants to make that available to others who want to learn too. “I’ve been working really hard this past year with the help of my local reps to bring training events and [looking for] ways to bring installers together,” he said. He partnered with Anna Langsjoen – another South Dakota installer who recently joined NTCA – to establish a Facebook group for South Dakota installers to help each other and post events. “I am working on different kind of events with all the sales reps in our area, and working on having a bigger presence of the NTCA in South Dakota,” he said. 

NTCA offers Knox resources and support that enhance his growth as a tile installer: “Networking, having a team of installers and the technical staff that you can call on,” he said, “It’s great to be able to call someone because I always have questions, and it’s great for people to critique my work. Having this team helps me become a better installer. Every day – and every job I do – I do better because there is always someone giving me guidance.” Knox plans to pursue his Certified Tile Installer (CTI) credential next year. 

Learning and helping others learn go hand-in-hand for Knox, providing him with “great joy…seeing other contractors coming together and helping. I know I wouldn’t be able to make it if I didn’t have people rooting for me to succeed.” 

Two of Knox’s projects: a mosaic floor and river rock shower pan.

Woelfel Receives NTCA Ring of Honor Award

Nyle Wadford (r.) presented Woelfel with the NTCA Ring of Honor during the Awards Lunch at Total Solutions Plus in Nashville.

During the tenth annual Total Solution Plus conference in Nashville, Tenn., the National Tile Contractors Association (NTCA) awarded James Woelfel, President of Artcraft Granite Marble and Tile Company in Mesa, Ariz., the NTCA Ring of Honor.

The NTCA Ring of Honor is a lifetime achievement award that recognizes NTCA contractors and associate members whose efforts have helped grow the association and assisted in achieving its objectives. Recipients are chosen by NTCA executive officers. 

Bart Bettiga, Executive Director of the NTCA, said Woelfel was chosen because of his dedication to the association and the tile installation trade. “James has provided leadership and passion to our association. He has been a constant advocate for the professional tile contractor in the development of standards and methods and is a staunch proponent of qualified labor. He has served on the executive committee for many years and is most deserving of this prestigious recognition.”

Along with Bettiga, industry leaders such as Butch Woelfel of Artcraft Granite Marble and Tile Company, John Cousins of Dal-Tile, Noah Chitty and Mark Shannon of Crossville, Inc., Mary Yocum of Schluter Systems, Rod Sigman of Custom Building Products, John Cox of Cox Tile, Eric Astrachan of the Tile Council of North America (TCNA), Nyle Wadford of Neuse Tile Service, and Martin Brookes of Heritage Marble & Tile participated in the video honoring Woelfel for his achievements and this prestigious honor.

In the video, Bettiga, who was last year’s NTCA Ring of Honor recipient, commended Woelfel’s service to the association. “I can’t think of anyone in my 18 years of being with the NTCA that has done a better job as a volunteer than James Woelfel of Artcraft Granite Marble and Tile Company. James has chaired our technical committee for many years, has been our president, and has represented us all over the country in presentations and in training and education programs.”

Among his accomplishments, Woelfel has been the chairman of the NTCA Technical Committee since 2007 and is a voting member of the TCNA Handbook and ANSI A108, 118, and 137.1 Committees. He served as president of the NTCA from 2015-2017 and was the 2011 recipient of the NTCA Tile Person of the Year Award. Woelfel is also an NTCA Recognized Consultant and a highly rated speaker at industry shows such as Coverings, The International Surface Event (TISE), and Total Solutions Plus.

“Receiving the Ring of Honor shows that James’ peers have recognized the years of meaningful work he has done for the NTCA,” said Bettiga. “There is nothing more honorable and laudable than what this award represents.”

Woelfel credits his wife, Chris, for much of his success. “I owe a ton of credit to my wife; she pumped me up when I was down and kicked my butt when I needed it. She showed me how to set and attain goals. She made me spend time in the industry and she took on all of the responsibilities for our family and work while I was out of town. She has an incredible professional background but she immersed herself in our industry and took it upon herself to learn everything she could so that she could support me and our family in making our business stronger. I love and appreciate my wife so much; she is the main reason I have achieved this dream.”

Woelfel said being chosen as this year’s recipient was humbling. “My first thought was how lucky I am to be associated with the other Ring of Honor recipients, people like Tom Ade, Bob Roberson, John Cox, Dan Welch, Bart Bettiga and, of course, my father Butch Woelfel.”

Woelfel’s father was the 2007 NTCA Ring of Honor recipient recognized for his career contributions to the association. The Woelfels are the only father and son to both receive the NTCA Ring of Honor recognition. 

“In 2007, when I presented the ring to my father, Butch Woelfel, I was amazed at the work he had put into the industry over many years that led to him getting the honor,” Woelfel said. “My wife, Chris, asked me if it was a goal of mine, as well, to earn the Ring of Honor. I told her that my reasons for being involved in the NTCA were to make the industry stronger and support tile contractors who often don’t have the necessary and strong voice at the table…and in doing that, if I ever received the Ring of Honor, it would be amazing.”

CTEF joins global GivingTuesday movement to highlight CTI program

This GivingTuesday, CTEF will celebrate giving by highlighting the passionate community it has touched as a result of providing education and installer certification for ceramic tile and stone industry professionals. GivingTuesday 2019 takes place on December 3rd.

What is GivingTuesday?

GivingTuesday represents a global day of giving that harnesses the collective power of individuals, communities, and organizations to encourage giving and to celebrate generosity worldwide. Every year, on GivingTuesday, millions of people across the globe (almost 60 countries) mobilize to show up, give back, and change their communities. The goal is to create a massive wave of generosity that lasts well beyond that day and touches every person on the planet.

Why GivingTuesday for CTEF?

For CTEF, GivingTuesday is about raising awareness and financial support not just for the ceramic tile and stone industry professional programs it offers, but also appreciation for the strong community of passionately dedicated ceramic tile artisans, installers, suppliers and specifiers committed to elevating the standards and expectations for tile installations and the importance of Qualified Labor.

As it specifically relates to the Certified Tile Installer (CTI) program, this community sponsors, volunteers for, promotes, educates, hosts hands-on testing events, encourages participation, celebrates successes and generally supports ongoing tile industry learning and excellence.

“For all who help make CTEF and the CTI program the tile industry game-changer it is, I encourage you to participate in GivingTuesday,” says Heidi Cronin, CTEF Industry Liaison and Promotions Director. “Share with your communities why you participate; explain what being a CTI means to you and encourage others to do the same by including #BecomeaCTI and #GivingTuesday in your updates.”

The Ceramic Tile Education Foundation (CTEF) is Joining the Global GivingTuesday Movement to Raise Awareness for the Certified Tile Installer (CTI) Program
GivingTuesday History

Founded in 2012, GivingTuesday has inspired millions of people to give back and support the causes they believe in. Over $400 million was raised online in 2018 to benefit a tremendously broad range of organizations, and much more was given in volunteer hours, donations of food and clothing, and acts of kindness.

“When GT launched in the US in 2012, we believed that technology and social media could be used to make generosity go viral;” said Asha Curran, GivingTuesday’s CEO and co-founder. “We believed in the idea that people fundamentally want to give and to talk about giving; and that the social sector had the capacity to show more innovative leadership, creativity, and collaboration. People and organizations around the world proved us right. As we prepare for December 3, we’re energized and encouraged by the community’s generosity. The levels of creativity, effort and the quality of the new ideas people have contributed and shared are phenomenal.”

Learn More About GivingTuesday and CTEF

Those who are interested in joining CTEF’s GivingTuesday initiative can visit For more details about the GivingTuesday movement, visit

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About the Ceramic Tile Education Foundation

The Ceramic Tile Education Foundation (CTEF) provides education and installer certification for professionals working in the ceramic tile and stone industry. Certification programs include the CTEF Certified Tile Installer (CTI) program which is the only third-party assessment of installer skill and knowledge to be recognized by the tile industry, and the Advanced Certifications for Tile Installers (ACT).

CTEF is headquartered in Pendleton, South Carolina, near Clemson University and the offices of the Tile Council of North America (TCNA).

For more information, visit Follow CTEF on Twitter:, and Facebook:


About GivingTuesday

GivingTuesday is a global giving movement that has been built by individuals, families, organizations, businesses and communities in all 50 states and in countries around the world. GivingTuesday harnesses the collective power of a unique blend of partners to transform how people think about, talk about, and participate in the giving season. It inspires people to take collective action to improve their communities, give back in better, smarter ways to the charities and causes they believe in, and help create a better world. GivingTuesday demonstrates how every act of generosity counts, and that they mean even more when we give together.

To learn more about GivingTuesday participants and activities or to join the celebration of giving, please visit or on Facebook:, Twitter: and Instagram:

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