Some issues weighing on the floor covering industry include industry consolidation, consumer awareness/spending, big boxes, and installer recruitment. The all-new Town Hall at Surfaces 2004 will give attendees the opportunity to hear what the experts think about these concerns and other business challenges.

Surfaces' first-ever Town Hall will feature a panel of experts from every facet of the industry-including a retailer, manufacturer, distributor and residential construction and floor covering industry forecasters. Town Hall panelists will address questions submitted by attendees prior to the show. The moderator at the 2004 Town Hall will be K. Bruce Koepcke, President, New Horizons Marketing. Panelists will include David E. Polley, Vice President Marketing, The Dixie Group; Alan Braunstein, President, Worldwide Wholesale Floor Coverings; James Gould, Chairman of the Board, Misco Shawnee Inc.; Tom Jennings, CFE, President, Bud Jennings Carpet One, and Chairman of the Board, World Floor Covering Association; Stuart Hirschhorn, Research Director, Catalina Research; and Kermit Baker, Senior Research Fellow, Harvard University's Joint Center for Housing Studies.

An installer has just been added to the Town Hall panel to ensure all areas of the industry are covered. Joe Grady, General Manager, Diversified Resources Inc., will be present to help address installation issues. Town Hall will take place Wednesday, January 28 from 7:30 to 9 a.m. The cost to attend is $10 before December 31 and $15 after December 31. In addition, this year's inductee to the World Floor Covering Association (WFCA) Hall of Fame will be announced prior to the start of Town Hall.

Surfaces 2004 takes place January 28-30 at the Sands Expo & Convention Center, Las Vegas. For more information on Surfaces 2004, telephone (800) 547-3477 or (972) 536-6400 or visit