Industry Insights
July 1st, 2006

July-August 2006

Vince Pompo Joins Ceramic Tile And Stone Consultants

Ceramic Tile And Stone Consultants, LLC (CTaSC) announced that Vince Pompo has joined the company as New Business Development Manager and will be focusing on promoting the University of Ceramic Tile and Stone (UofCTS) training programs. Pompo began his career in the ceramic tile industry in 1949 at Gladding McBean & Company in Glendale, CA working for the famous manufacturer of Franciscan Tile. He remained with the firm for 26 years, rising to the position of Sales Manager. In 1975 he founded Southwestern Ceramic Tile & Marble Co., a wholesale importer, distributor and retail operation serving the greater San Diego region. Foreign products were growing in popularity during that time and Vince teamed up with other key importers to form a co-op importing company in 1980 called Certico. Southwestern Ceramic Tile & Marble enjoyed a successful reputation among members of the design community, the construction trade, distributors, suppliers and consumers for 25 years. Vince embarked on another venture in 2000 with the opening of Tile Depot, a retail store offering a wide selection of tile and stone for residential and commercial applications. He recently sold the Tile Depot business which enabled him to take on his latest assignment as part of the CTaSC Team. In 1977, Pompo became a Certified Ceramic Tile Consultant (CTC), a credential granted by the Ceramic Tile Institute of America (CTIOA). He was a charter member of the Ceramic Tile Distributors of America (CTDA) and served as its president from 1982 to 1983. He has also been a member of the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID), American Institute of Architects (AIA), Producer’s Council, USC’s Architectural Guild, Building Institute Association (BIA) and Construction Specification Institute (CSI). Pompo was also honored with the prestigious Sales and Marketing “Sammy Award.”

NTCA Contractor Safety Program

Effective May 1st the National Tile Contractors Association introduced its new NTCA Contractor Safety Program for tile contracting companies. The NTCA Contractor Safety Program was created to meet the specific needs of tile contractors. “We recognize the importance of safety in both commercial and residential tile installations, and we also know how hard it is for small businesses to implement and stick to a safety program,” said Bart Bettiga, NTCA executive director. “We feel the NTCA Contractor Safety Program offers a real solution for tile contractors on this important issue. In addition, we are convinced that by implementing this program over a period of time, contractors will have a significant opportunity to reduce their workman’s compensation costs and at the same time offer a safer environment for employees.” The NTCA Contractor Safety Program is an annual subscription and is available to NTCA Members at a reduced rate. The subscription includes features and benefits such as monthly safety topics; a worker safety policy for each company to personalize the policy; recommendations outlining the purpose, function, and organization of a viable safety committee; an outline for a drug-free workplace policy outline; a safety violation policy; what to do in case of accident or injury; and OSHA’s quarterly safety newsletter. Additionally, NTCA will offer a second year, reduced-cost subscription that will include twelve new safety topics for monthly meetings; two supplemental issues for personal or home safety concerns; safety award certificates and hard hat stickers; and the OSHA quarterly newsletter. “We urge contractors who do not have safety programs to seriously consider this opportunity that will walk them through it every step of the way,” Bettiga said. For more information and pricing, contact NTCA at (601) 939-2071.

Alpha Professional Tools® Hires new sales representative for the northern california territory

Alpha Professional Tools® is pleased to announce that Mr. Oscar Soltero has joined their sales team. He will be responsible for the Northern California territory including the Reno/Lake Tahoe area of Nevada.

Soltero has many years of experience in the tile industry. He can be contacted through the main office at (800) 648-7229

Questech® Opens New State-of-the-Art Facility

Questech Corporation announced the opening of the company’s new 70,000 sq. ft. headquarters and manufacturing plant in Rutland, VT. The new facility features fully automated equipment for producing their Cast Metal and Cast Stone decorative tiles, and their revolutionary Tumbled Marble field tiles with Q-Seal™ lifetime sealer. “We are excited for our employees and our customers,” said Mr. Barry Culkin, CEO and President of Questech Corporation. “Our new state of the art manufacturing equipment and the consolidation to one location will make our organization more effective and our company more valuable to our customers.” The new facility, made necessary by the company’s growth rate over the past 5 years, will house all operations and administrative functions under one roof. Questech had moved its product design and administrative staff to the Rutland location two years ago to make room for more production capacity in their old facility. “That’s when the planning for a new and improved manufacturing facility began in earnest,” according to Barry Culkin. Culkin says that this move was an important step forward for the company.


The Natural Stone Council (NSC) has given long-term budget approval to participate in and raise awareness of the environmentally-friendly Green Building Movement, said John Mattke, chairman of NSC’s Committee on Sustainability. Mattke, president and COO of Cold Spring Granite, said “Stone is a natural product, and we felt that it would be important for the Natural Stone Council, as representatives of the industry, to do all we can to help educate and promote stone as an environmentally-friendly building and landscape material. Real stone, the world’s oldest building material, is enjoying unprecedented growth in both the residential and commercial segments,” he continued. Mattke said the attributes stone offers environmentally-friendly building and design include: a natural product, an enduring life-cycle, ease of care and maintenance, recyclability, and quarry and manufacturing best practices. The short and long-term goals of the NSC are to provide documented, factual information on the overall benefits of natural stone and position natural stone as a material that supports Green awareness, initiatives and certifications. A major component of the program will be promotion and education aimed at both the natural stone, design, construction and landscape industries.The NSC also joined the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) of Washington D.C.

MAPEI Sponsors Marathon winner

MAPEI-sponsored marathon runner Rita Jeptoo of Kenya won the Women’s Division of the 110th Boston Marathon with a time of 2:28:38. Wearing the trademark MAPEI “cubes” and logo on her running outfit, Jeptoo came in 24th overall in a field of more than 22,000 men and women who entered the famed marathon. Due to a late arrival, she did not have a chance to review the course before the race, but Jeptoo felt that she had trained well and had a good chance in her first American marathon. Her instinct proved right. The company sponsored the MAPEI Professional Cycling Team from 1993 to 2002. In 2006, MAPEI is sponsoring the Italian National Soccer Team. MAPEI’s commitment to sports is also reflected in its sponsorship of marathon running, mountain biking, car racing, skiing, equestrian events and other activities. The MAPEI Sport Service, located in Varese, Italy, opened in 1996 to support the athletes of the Professional Cycling Team with scientific rationality and a precise ethical approach. Today, the MAPEI Sport Service has evolved into a centre for all sportsmen and women. The staff concentrates on optimizing performance factors for athletes, researching the problems encountered by active men and women, and disseminating scientifically validated concepts regarding sporting and fitness activities. MAPEI has been able to transfer the concept of teamwork to the corporate world. Setting and achieving a shared goal by working together not only increases the chances of success, but also strengthens the company through positive feedback.

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