The Chicago Floorcovering Association (CFA) will hold the first joint WFCA-CFI installation event, dubbed “the WFCA-CFI Installation Extravaganza,” on Jan. 14. According to Tom Shepardson, CFA president, “We welcome flooring installers from everywhere to attend our first event of 2014 in Elk Grove, Ill., at E. J. Welch. This is a huge savings for CFI training which is normally $495 per workshop. With the $200 WFCA sponsorship per installer for WFCA members and the opportunity to use additional WFCA scholarships, it’s an event no one should miss.”

“WFCA is actively involved in installation training by partnering with the CFI to bring five workshops to the first WFCA-sponsored event of 2014,”  noted Tom Jennings, WFCA vice president, member services. “Installers have the opportunity of attending a class during the first session Jan. 14-15 in resilient or ceramic. On Jan. 16-17, they can attend the hardwood/laminate or carpet workshop. This is an exciting opportunity for installers to enhance their skills and become up-to-date on all the current methods of installation. WFCA is making a huge investment in 2014 in installation training by bringing the programs to different areas throughout the nation.  We invite everyone to participate and take advantage of the CFI programs.”

Fred Scharm, chairman of CFA’s Installation & Sales Training Committee and president of Scharm Floor Covering said, “We have planned this event so the entire Chicagoland community has the opportunity to attend.  Keeping up to date with the constant installation requirements in the industry is difficult, but this type of workshop makes it much easier. With the support of WFCA, it is affordable for everyone.”  

Jim Walker, CFI CEO, said his group is “very appreciative of the financial commitment of the WFCA for installation. There is nowhere that installers can receive this much training at a tremendous savings. No installer should miss this opportunity in the Chicago area. Members of the CFI Team which includes the technical representatives of numerous manufacturers are among the best in the industry. Not only will they share the latest information, but will actively work with the installers in the hands-on program. However, the size of the classes is limited to assure that each installer has access to the best learning environment.”

The workshop schedule also includes the Carpet Inspection and Installation Knowledge Workshop. “Information that is vital to a successful installation is presented. The sales representatives, workroom managers, inspectors and others in the industry will view the requirements of carpet installation, learn how to identify and solve programs and better yet, learn how to avoid problems,” added Robert Varden, CFI executive director.

“Installers who successfully complete the two days of intensive training receive CFI Certification, shirt, decals and certificate. Two years of installation experience is required for CFI Certification, but installers with a minimum of one year may attend the training and receive a certificate of completion. CFI is looking forward to the 2014 schedule and the opportunity to share skills with professional flooring installers,” stated Alan Ellis, CFI president.

Applications are available online at or by contacting the CFI National Office at (816) 231-4646. The CFI Staff will assist with the WFCA registration requirements. Not only can the WFCA member receive a $200 discount for each installer that participates, but WFCA will pay 50% of the registration fee up to $500, according to CFI. Visit for more details or call (800) 624-6880.

WFCA-CFI will host additional CFI installation workshops at: Flooring Association Northwest at Mason Contracting, Seattle, Feb. 18-21, 2014; Maryland Northern Virginia Floor Covering Association/CFI Delmarva at Fishman Flooring Solutions, Baltimore, March 4-7, 2014; and Star Lumber, Wichita, Kans., March 18-21, 2014. More dates will be announced later, CFI noted.