TCATA Boasts Worthwhile Conference


Jade West, from the National Association of Wholesaler-Distributors, speaks to Textile Care Allied Trades Association (TCATA) members about legislative and regulatory issues in Washington. (Photos: TCATA)


TCATA conference attendees watch a judo demonstration at the U.S. Olympic Training Center.


Past and current TCATA presidents pause for a photo in front of the Olympic cauldron at the Colorado Springs U.S. Olympic Training Center: (from left) Bruce Johnson, Chicago Dryer Co.; David Dawson; Alexander Atwater, A-1 Products; Rick Kelly, Pellerin Milnor; Bryant Dunivan, Energenics Corp.; Steve Mathews, M & B Hangers; and current TCATA President Gerald Henke, Intex Distributing.


TCATA President Gerald Henke (left) presents a 25th anniversary award to Bill Brooks, representing Alliance Laundry Systems.

Staff Writer |

Attendees heard from speakers, rubbed elbows with Olympians

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — “Another outstanding conference” was the clear consensus of those who attended the Textile Care Allied Trades Association (TCATA) Annual Management and Educational Conference here this summer, reports the association that represents member laundry and drycleaning equipment manufacturers and distributors.

Speaker Jade West of the National Association of Wholesaler-Distributors provided an update on myriad legislative and regulatory issues in Washington, D.C, including discussion of the “colorful” political climate. She spent a significant amount of time answering many questions from attendees.  

Krista Clive-Smith gave members ideas on how they can brand their companies to differentiate themselves from competitors. Finally, featured speaker Steve McClatchy offered many valuable insights into ways to utilize time more efficiently. McClatchy discussed many specific, simple technology tools that lead to greater productivity.

Attendees also gathered at the main U.S. Olympic Training Center, where they mingled with several Olympians currently training there, toured the facility and witnessed a judo demonstration up-close by four Olympic athletes. The evening ended with the lighting of the Olympic torch and cauldron, which was relayed by past TCATA presidents who were in attendance, then lit by president Gerald Henke.

Spouses and guests participated in a fun, interactive jewelry-making program led by Taryn Sweeney of White Rabbit Beads.

Intertwined into the closing dinner was a murder mystery. Clues were given throughout the evening to help attendees to solve the murder.  


During the conference, two officers were elected. Henke announced Leslie Schaeffer as president-elect and John Silverman as treasurer-elect. Both will assume their two-year terms at the end of the 2018 annual conference.

Schaeffer is vice president of BPS Communications, which publishes National Clothesline. John Silverman is president and owner of Tschopp Supply, a distributor based in Buffalo, N.Y.


Five member companies celebrating milestone anniversaries were recognized at the annual conference, TCATA says. 

Henke presented anniversary awards to Bill Brooks, representing Alliance Laundry Systems, celebrating 25 years, and Kevin Gavlak, representing Faultless Laundry Products, celebrating 50 years. 

Other companies acknowledged for their TCATA anniversaries were Columbia Drycleaning MachinesLoomis Brothers Equipment Co. and United Wire Hanger/UWH Industries.


The Colorado Springs Country Club hosted the annual TCATA golf tournament. The event was well-attended, with 43 golfers. 

The first- and second-place teams, along with those who won in the categories of longest drive and closest to the pin, were presented with “Olympic medals” by the four Olympians who performed the judo demonstration at the dinner party held at the Olympic Training Center. 

The golfers raised $600 toward TCATA’s scholarship fund.


Latest Podcast

Host Bruce Beggs compares textile care industry tales and trends with fellow editors Tim Burke of American Drycleaner and Matt Poe of American Laundry News.

Want more? Visit the archive »

Digital Edition

Latest Classifieds