Expo Plus education includes 10 hours of industry market classroom education, Oct. 2-4. An Expo Plus registration is required to attend. During each breakout time, attendees have the choice of 4 sessions and are free to move between session rooms throughout the afternoon.

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The following is subject to change. Disclaimer at bottom of page.

Wednesday, October 2, 2019

10 - 10:50 am

Kiarash Arangdad, Research & Development Chemist, Elevate Textile Inc./Burlington

Mosquitoes transmit diseases to more than 700 million people annually.  In addition to potential diseases, biting insects can detract from outdoor activities.  A textile solution such as incorporating a fabric with insect repellents can help provide protection.

In this presentation the concepts below will be discussed:

  1. describe methods of application and manufacture of bite protective textiles
  2. compare action of contact repellents and spatial repellents
  3. explain value assessment (efficacy and durability) and test methods

Andrew Nasarczyk, Senior Manager – Research and Development, GALE Pacific Ltd.

At face value, most Knitted Shade Fabrics look similar, but dig a little deeper and you’ll quickly learn that not all Knitted Shade fabrics are created or manufactured equally. This presentation aims to:

1. Highlight Key considerations in the design and development of world class knitted shade fabrics.
2. Explain how World Class Knitted Shade fabrics are manufactured – including steps which are often avoided.
3. Describe common testing terms and methodologies associated with Knitted Shade and how this translates to real world use.

Bill Fiedler, Director of Chemicals, AGC Chemicals Americas, Exton, PA

Why Ethylene TetraFluoroEthleyne (ETFE) Film?

Learn more about this alternative membrane for tensile structure designs. See how ETFE film can create iconic beauty through innovative material performance.

Properties and features of ETFE film:

  • Understand the power of the ETFE chemical chain
  • See the solar transmission difference and let there be light
  • How ETFE film can deliver strong and durable lightweight performance
  • Review several ETFE projects, evaluate alternative properties and features

Bob Falahee, Owner, Marygrove Roll Screens, LLC & Mike Falahee, President, Marygrove Roll Screens, LLC

This session will discuss growing your sales & manufacturing organizations with software.

Learn how you can:

  • Eliminate paperwork
  • Reduce errors
  • Streamline invoicing
11 - 11:50 am

Fitzroy Brown, OEM Product Manager, BD Peripheral Intervention OEM

The medical textile market is rapidly growing, as medical-grade textiles have proven to provide the versatility and performance that medical device OEMs need to create implantable devices that best meet the needs of today’s medical applications.  The incorporation of implantable textiles in vascular medical devices allows for increased flexibility and functionality in product design. Textiles can be developed in 2D and 3D implantable forms, with almost limitless configuration possibilities.

This session will:

  1. Provide a brief history the evolution of surgical textiles
  2. Explore the growing opportunities to use them for vascular surgical applications, such as in heart valves and as cardiovascular patches
  3. Give attendees a better understanding of the structural advantages of incorporating textiles to promote tissue ingrowth and improve blood permeability
  4. Identify some of the critical factors a medical device OEM should consider when choosing a textile manufacturer.

Christopher Nolan, Director, Nolan. UDA Pty Ltd

What is shadecloth and how effective is it in fulfilling its intended purpose? How long does it last, and how should it be properly fabricated and installed?

Starting with the basic construction of different types knitted polyethylene shadecloth, the presenter will show how variances in the type of knit matrix affect physical parameters (e.g. tear and tensile strength), and the degree of solar protection (e.g UVR Block and Heat transmitted), with supporting test data. The long term impact of UV exposure on yarn strength and colour fastness will also be discussed, in the context of changes to the chemical composition of stabilisers designed to meet European REACH and Californian Proposition 65 standards.

The stress vs strain (i.e. load vs elongation) response of these different types of knitted matrix under bi-axial loading (which is what is actually experienced in the field) will be discussed with the implications this has on patterning, fabrication and installation. The presentation will conclude with ‘best practice’ recommendations for fabricators and installers; and guidelines for consumers, based on field experience in the USA, Australia and the Middle East.

Alan Stewart, Vice President, MPanel Software Solutions LLC

Shade Sails are engineered structures however, the technology is often misunderstood and underestimated. The result is that many shade sails fail long before their normal life expectancy. The right design and detail will ensure you avoid these problems.

In this session you will learn:

  • The differences between the right and wrong design
  • What is a catenary an how it works
  • Correct patterning of shade sails

J. David Bowick, P.Eng., Senior Principal , Blackwell Structural Engineers

Air was holding Pterosaurs aloft 200 million years ago and has been holding films in stable equilibrium for over 4 billion years.  Leonardo DaVinci explored the use of air supported structures and a building industry has emerged and matured within the last 100 years.

This presentation will introduce participants to the various types of air supported structures used in buildings with some historical background.  Engineering principals used in the design will be presented as well as a road map for their use, including relevant codes, software and some of the major players in the industry.

At the end of this lecture the participant should:

  • Have a level of comfort with using inflatable structures and an understanding of their behavior
  • Know when inflatables or air supported structures are most appropriate
  • Understand the limitations on their use
  • Know what resources are available and how to access them
3 - 3:50 pm

Renee Kalmes, MSPH, CIH, Principal Scientist, Exponent

Proposition 65 is not going away. With over 850+ chemicals on the list this  consumer “”right-to-know law”” affects numerous consumer products including textile products. Attendees will learn about several aspects of Proposition 65 and gain insight for developing your business strategy.

  1. Where proposition 65 has been and where it is going
  2. How can I evaluate if my product needs a label
  3. Legal and business compliance approaches and case studies – to warn or not to warn
  4. Methods to address customer/consumer questions
  5. Emerging Chemicals

Steve Fredrickson, Sales Director, Sattler Corp

During this session we will review various types of applications using fabric to show attendees the options available to them outside of the standard lines. We will cover creating ROI’s for your products and how to discuss fabric with architects as well as a review of existing projects to show architects and developers.

Erika Burns, LEED Green Associate Program Manager, Attachments Energy Rating Council (AERC)

A newly-launched fabric and window attachment certification and labeling program from the Attachments Energy Rating Council (AERC) provides an opportunity for manufacturers to differentiate their higher-value and higher-margin products, while giving customers confidence in fabric performance through third-party testing. This session will include an overview of the AERC program and the metrics used to assess the impact of window attachments (blinds, shades, shutters, and awnings) and fabrics on energy and comfort in residential and commercial applications. Session attendees will be able to:

  1. Understand the role fabrics play in the residential AERC certification program, as well as the developing commercial program.
  2. Describe to customers the value-add of AERC certified fabrics and window attachments, including reliable performance data, energy benefits, and utility incentive program opportunities.
  3. List at least three performance metrics certified through AERC.
  4. Explain AERC’s relationship to the U.S. Department of Energy, the ENERGY STAR program, and utility energy efficiency incentive programs.
3 - 4:50 pm

Brad Wolff, People Maximizer and Bestselling Author of People Problems?

Workforce optimization is the process of creating a competitive edge by developing a flexible, adaptive, learning organization. You can have great success in our fast-changing, unpredictable world.

In this executive session, attendees will discover::

  1. Why the traditional approach to managing organizations is no longer effective
  2. What a flexible, adaptive, “learning organization” is and why this mindset and culture is so important
  3. 3 key principles Google applies to develop the culture that optimizes their workforce
  4. The 7 steps to optimize their workforce
  5. The 4 step process to help people willingly choose to make sustainable changes
  6. How to create transformational changes rather than small incremental change

Special Added Feature for Participants!
Three post-Expo live video group sessions to help you implement your key takeaways despite the obstacles.

4 - 4:50 pm

Dr. Reinhold Schneider, Senior Scientist, Textile Chemistry & Printing Technologies German Institute for Textile and Fiber Research (DITF) Denkendorf

Textile finishing improves performance of textile substrates by implementing functions such as water repellency, UV-protection, flame-retardancy etc. to the textile substrate. The traditional application is done in full width using padding equipment. This technology is very high in consumption of chemicals as well as it is not flexible as demanded for the production of small orders. In contrast, digital printing technology enables saving of chemicals, because the finishing chemicals are applied only to the areas that are needed for the finished textile. Inkjet printing has significantly developed within the last few years and now represents a future oriented and very fast and flexible application technology.

  1. Formulation of functional inks will be provided and it will be shown that functional inks provides a new way in finishing and functionalization of textile materials using digital printing technology.
  2. A number of newly developed functional inks will be presented as well as their possibilities and limitations in digital functionalisation.
  3. A vision of digital finishing will be presented and the potential of creating very new textile products will be shown.

Gregory Jones, Vice President, Shelter Structures Inc.

Large Tensioned Fabric Structures (TFS) have more in common with the traditional building construction process than with “”tents”” when it comes to large Design/Build projects. However, too often the agents tasked with writing the specification or overseeing the installation, do not have sufficient product knowledge to operate effectively and efficiently. Join Greg Jones of Shelter Structures as he takes you on a fun-filled, interactive journey through a recent large project for a DOD customer. Laugh at some customer conceptions, cry at some unnecessary excess costs, and take away some ideas to help you educate your next prospect.

  1. Review the range of capabilities that TFS fulfill.
  2. Identify key specifications and how they can significantly improve or degrade End User experience.
  3. Differentiate typical components found in a large TFS and how they come together to deliver an End User experience.
  4. Understand typical maintenance, repair and warranty for TFS.

Randy Westlund, Founder and CEO, Awning Tracker

Small businesses in this industry all face similar productivity-related issues that cost time and money. Identifying weaknesses in key areas and implementing strategies for continual improvement are vital to maintaining a prospering small business in today’s competitive market. This talk focuses on key areas such as communication, workflow management, knowing your costs, and effective leadership.

Come learn how to:

  1. Identify your company’s weak areas
  2. Recognize the impact of mistakes on your bottom line
  3. Implement strategies for doing better
  4. Evaluate your company’s productivity regularly

Thursday, October 3, 2019

10 - 10:50 am

Frank Keohan, Senior Technology Manager, Bolger & O’Hearn, Inc.

Repellent finishes provide a number of beneficial properties to fabrics including resistance to water, stains, and abrasion.  They can improve the sustainability of the products they are used on by extending their useful life, reducing cleaning-related resource usage, and providing alternatives to much more resource-intensive materials.  The chemical composition of the finishes can also contribute to the overall textile sustainability quotient.  By incorporating renewable repellent ingredients, energy-saving application methods, and finishes designed for compatibility with fabric recycling technology, textile sustainability can be significantly enhanced.  The evolution of sustainable repellent technology will be presented in the session.  Attendees will learn the basics behind repellent finishing and be introduced to new technology for increasing this industry’s ecological profile including:

  • Traditional repellent chemistry and test methods
  • Sustainability trends in textile finish manufacturing
  • Fabric construction and finish sustainability issues
  • Strategies for improving sustainability throughout the finishing process

Jonathan Palmer, CE,  Autometrix

Manufacturing 4.0 is here and you hear it as the latest buzz word being thrown around. For the most part, Smart Factories are being implemented by large corporations that have the capacity to make big upfront investments and access to hi-tech solutions.

So what does this mean for us and how can we leverage this trend today? We will discuss the concepts that absolutely do apply to us, and that will keep us competitive in this ever advancing industrial era.

Timothy Mitchell, HP Latex Czar, HP Latex and Dye-Sublimation USA

We will look at the new HP ColorSmart technology and the recent innovations in color management for textiles and how those innovations will change the way textiles are printed.

We will discuss closed-loop ink restrictions, linearization, global ink limits, and ICC profiles and how they work together to create color consistency and accuracy on a variety of textiles.

We will also discuss Pantone color matching and color matching for fleet printing.

William McSpadden, Owner, Capitol Awning

Get an overview of techniques and processes for any size shop. Learn about the major mistakes that companies make and how to avoid them. Discover the ways that you can make money doing graphics. Uncover the potential, the problems, and the profitability of doing graphics in house no matter what size shop you are.

11 - 11:50 am

Paige Mullis, Director of Concept Development, Glen Raven, Inc.

Have you ever had a great idea and not quite sure what to do with it? In this fast-paced session, we will:

  • Engage in Innovation Round-Up
  • Clearly define the idea
  • Map out an action plan
  • Define steps to prototype
  • Test/feedback/iteration

Ethan Ware, Attorney, Williams Mullen

In 2015, EPA published the New Hazardous Waste Generator Improvement Rule. This session will review changes to satellite accumulation policies, flexibility for conditional exempt generators, new closure requirements for storage units at large quantity generators, and relief for episodic events, which cause generators to exceed generator classification levels.

Whitney Carman, Owner, Even Keel Canvas, LLC

Fabricators are unique minded individuals. They are problem solving artists, each with their own style, in the process of creating they are also always innovating. In this session will be focusing on canvas tops.

We will focus on the details of cause and effect given choices a client has with repairs, new fabrication and the long-term impact of those choices. The bottom line is that we are the professionals, we have to interpret the clients wishes into reality. Each attendee will be given a list of questions to ask as well as best practice recommendations.

Key takeaways:

  1. Preventative maintenance
  2. Easily accessible repairs
  3. Recommendations given “if/then” questions for the client
  4. Designing for individuals and their destinations

Sponsored by:

Mike Compton, Print Media Product Marketing Manager, Top Value Fabrics, Inc.

This session will cover details of the fastest growing trends and markets in digital printing media and applications.


  1. Diversify to increase your digital printing business and profit centers.
  2. Growth trends in the digital printing market space.
  3. Choosing the appropriate fabrics for digital printing applications.
  4. Achieving brilliant end results attracting new customers and business.

Sponsored by:

3 - 3:50 pm

Susanne Wroblewski, M.S., Research Lab Coordinator, Instructor, Central Michigan University

What does the design process for the development of functional clothing look like? How can we utilize the Functional Design Process to effectively create products that meet the needs of specific groups like Breast Cancer Survivors?

One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime and the number choosing mastectomy and reconstruction in response to invasive breast cancer is on the rise. Survivors have surgical and healing related side effects which create unique undergarment needs. Join us to learn how the Thermal Bra came to be designed and validated.

Participants will be able to:

  1. Understand the vital nature of user centered design research
  2. Demonstrate how to develop an effective problem definition
  3. Identify strategies to collect and interpret functional design data
  4. Validate whether the proposed solution meets the customer’s needs
  5. Appreciate the cyclical nature of functional design

Dr. Bimal Kad, President/CEO, Enkad Sciences

Specialty Fabric manufacturers generate about 5% of post-industrial fabric waste on their production tonnage. Efficient and sustainable disposal of such persistent waste streams will always remain a challenge. Our viewpoint is that long range thinking is required, from the generators perspective, for appropriate absorption of waste stream in secondary, downstream applications where the waste stream becomes a viable, economical, ingredient resource.  This talk details examples of sustainable, collaborative partnerships between waste generators and waste consumers in forging viable paths for fabric waste absorption & consumption.

Brandt Sharp, VP Sales, Sharp’s Tarps Inc.

How is your business operating different than 1, 5 or 20 years ago?  With the emergence of new technology for the industrial fabric products industry being developed all of the time, how do you stay on top of it all?  Innovative new equipment and processes are setting a new standard for productivity and profitability.  Regardless of company size or budget, what may seem beyond the realm of possibility may in fact be within short reach.  Together we will explore the best time and the strategies to make the leap to secure your future in this ever-changing industry, from funding new ideas to full implementation of innovation to take your company to the next level.  Will you be a leader or a follower?

3 - 4:50 pm

Brad Wolff, People Maximizer and Bestselling Author of People Problems?

In this interactive session, attendees will learn:

  • The 4 most likely root causes of your employee disengagement (It’s usually not what you think!)
  • Why previous attempts to solve these problems have failed
  • 7 key things you can do to improve engagement

Special Added Feature for Participants!
Three post-Expo live video group sessions to help you implement your key takeaways despite the obstacles.

4 - 4:50 pm

Lauren Birrittella, Senior Curator + Color, Materials, Finishes (CMF) Specialist, Glen Raven, Inc.

CMF, which stands for Color, Materials + Finishes, is an area of design that focuses on the value of selecting materials early in the product design process. During this interactive session we will experience innovative materials in terms of their performance, aesthetic and sustainability. Attendees will leave with an understanding of how Color, Materials + Finishes can be applied to:

  1. Develop and improve products that drive revenue
  2. Influence quality and user experiences that build customer loyalty
  3. Differentiate themselves from competition

Kimberlie Freund, Senior International Trade Analyst, U.S. International Trade Commission

The U.S. International Trade Commission  independent is a quasijudicial Federal agency with broad investigative responsibilities on matters of trade. This session will provide an overview of the functions of the agency and will provide a more in-depth look at how to find a product in the U.S. Harmonized Tariff Schedule, where to find trade data, and the upcoming second round of Miscellaneous Tariff Bill petition process.

Anthony Pappalardo, Sales Manager – North America, Dickson Coatings USA

We will discuss the available technologies for applying graphics to outdoor textiles for awnings and structures, including digital print, pressure sensitive films and heat transfer. We will address the following questions:

  1. What are the best methods for applying graphics to various fabrics on the market?
  2. What is the typical lifespan of print on outdoor textiles?
  3. Is it best to purchase my own printer or work with a Print Service Provider?
  4. What is the cost of entry into the digital print business?

Friday, October 4, 2019

10 - 10:50 am

Marie O’Mahony, Consultant, Author and Educator

There is no crystal ball that can allow the future to be predicted with any degree of certainty and yet all businesses have to plan for it, so how do we address this?  In this session we look at the potential for Scenario Planning with the guiding principles of Convergence(fusion) to develop a portfolio of alternative futures. The use of Convergence(fusion) is introduced to account for the bringing together of different materials and technologies.  Because of time limitations smart materials and systems are used as the case study, but the principles can equally be applied to other textile fields.

Jeff Nowak, CEO, Rocket Labs 360

Dive deep into a high-tech analysis of a hotly debated market — fabric vs. metal awnings. The goal of this research, powered by artificial intelligence and machine learning tools, is to better understand decisions made along the supply chain and buyers’ journey in regards to awning-material selections.

This research, conducted by an independent, third party, relies on unstructured data gathered from the “digital universe.” More than 3 million data points of thoughts, opinions, values, and beliefs about specific awning-material selections drive this analysis.  You’ll discover the drivers and barriers to both fabric and metal awning-material selection; understand positive and negative sentiments of each awning material from the supply side and buyer points of views; and hear first-hand the opportunities for fabric awnings use based on data.

What you’ll learn:

  • Who are the key decision makers and influencers in the use of awning materials?
  • What market and competitive advantages do fabric awnings have over metal awnings?
  • Understand how and why fabric vs. metal awning decisions are made.
11 - 11:50 am

Tony Suarez, CEO, Prototype Monster, Inc.

It may seem like a daunting task, developing a product using different fabrics.  An efficient process in place can help streamline the development and sourcing of the correct fabrics.  Attendees will leave with the knowledge of:

  1. How to perform analysis of existing fabrics in the market.
  2. Knowledge of the design process.
  3. An understanding of the tech pack workflow.
  4. Qualifying suppliers properly.
  5. Knowledge of the supplier-centric sampling process.
  6. Prototyping process with new fabrics.

*IFAI Disclaimer: Although every reasonable effort is made to provide the speakers, topics, and sessions listed, some changes or substitutions may occur. Speakers and sessions are subject to cancellation or change up to and including the day the session(s) are scheduled to be held. Changes or cancellations are made at the discretion of IFAI and may be done without notifying attendees. If sessions are changed or cancelled no refunds should be expected. Agreement to attend the IFAI Expo acknowledges acceptance of this provision.