INSTALL Profile: Richard Schmidt

Written by INSTALL / January 17, 2018

Richard Schmidt thinks he has a boring story, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth. The technical specialist for industry giant Tarkett started his career in the floorcovering industry more than forty years ago as helper at a furniture and carpet company.

Schmidt was in his mid-20’s when he took this crucial step in his life. Before that he worked in construction as a carpenter building homes, apartments and commercial structures. He hopped from job to job trying to see what he liked. In 1976, during a terrible cold snap that saw 56 days below freezing, he spent one too many days rough-framing houses. “Looking across the building site and seeing journeymen installing carpeting in a warm space struck me as an attractive alternative,” he laughed.

While working at the furniture and carpet company, Schmidt started a side business with a coworker in 1979. Eventually the two opened a small business and moved into commercial focusing on main street installation. After a few years the two went their separate ways and Schmidt started his own company. When completing a project for a local post office, the landlord of the building approached him, professing that he was incredibly impressed with his dedication and quality. “I can’t find one seam anywhere in this entire space,” he said.

The building owner was a union contractor and the next thing Schmidt knew he was getting asked to bid out work. He originally picked small projects here and there but eventually completed larger projects and did work for other union contractors in the area. He became a signatory (Carpenters 170) in Youngstown, OH in the mid-1990s.

Through industry connections Schmidt eventually met Tim Provence. Provence was working with Armstrong Flooring at the time, and the company was looking for a Midwest installation manager. Schmidt got the job and worked with the company for several years.

When Schmidt left Armstrong, he reunited with the same union contractor from the post office project and started working on the road. While it was a great opportunity at the right time, Schmidt was contacted by Tarkett, which had just purchased Johsonite, a year earlier. They were looking for a dedicated technical specialist and knew he was the right person for the job thanks to the success he had with product certification programs at Armstrong in conjunction with INSTALL.

While Schmidt got his feet wet with INSTALL at Armstrong, his involvement grew once he took on his role at Tarkett. Johnsonite was a charter member of INSTALL, along with Armstrong, meaning there was strong support from both ends and an understanding of the value behind the INSTALL name.

“By attending train the trainers events, I am able to get INSTALL trainers up to speed with our brand’s certification process,” said Schmidt. “This is beneficial for us, our products and the industry. Because INSTALL is willing to adopt and administer the training around the country, it also benefits the client since they know that their flooring is properly installed the first time.”

Schmidt has a storied history in the floorcovering industry, yet he seems more impressed by INSTALL than himself. “Nobody has what INSTALL has or does what INSTALL does” he said. “The organization has done a phenomenal job at welcoming us into the fold and is bettering the industry through specification training and detailed, in-depth curriculum.”

Explore More News from INSTALL

INSTALL Director's Report: October 2018

Read Article

INSTALL Supports Veterans through Career Placement Program

Read Article

Earn CEU credits with INSTALL's new curriculum

Read Article

Don’t fear the future of the floor covering industry

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: Penny Czarra

Read Article

INSTALL Conference brings collaboration to meet industry demands

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: Frank Koch

Read Article

INSTALL Director's Report: July 2018

Read Article

INSTALL Expansion Initiative Steadily Progresses

Read Article

INSTALL & Roppe Partner at NeoCon 2018

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: Mike Maguire

Read Article

Announcing new Alliance Partners and INSTALL Warranty Contractors

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: Del Church

Read Article

New Texas Training Center celebrates grand opening

Read Article

Sisters in the Brotherhood Participate in New INSTALL Training

Read Article

Tarkett & INSTALL partner to create integrated education program

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: Andy Bowman

Read Article

INSTALL Director's Report: February 2018

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: Richard Schmidt

Read Article

Reduce Maintenance Costs with Polished Concrete Flooring

Read Article

INSTALL Director's Report: January 2018

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: James Colombo

Read Article

INSTALL Director's Report: December 2017

Read Article

Master Craft Flooring Wins 2017 FCI Installation Award

Read Article

INSTALL Director's Report: November 2017

Read Article

INSTALL Opens Enrollment for CIM Program Scholarship

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: Michael Bonacci

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: Adam Williams

Read Article

INSTALL Director's Report: October 2017

Read Article

INSTALL Sees Continued Growth in Southern U.S.

Read Article

INSTALL Announces Canadian NAC Winner

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: Kelly Bakke

Read Article

INSTALL Director's Report: September 2017

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: Jeff Johnson

Read Article

INSTALL Director's Report: August 2017

Read Article

INSTALL Combats Labor Shortage through Industry Partnerships

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: David Altman

Read Article

INSTALL Director's Report: July 2017

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: Jeff Moore

Read Article

INSTALL Director's Report: June 2017

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: Dan Solomon

Read Article

INSTALL & Partners to Host ICRA Training

Read Article

INSTALL & Roppe Partner at NeoCon 2017

Read Article

INSTALL Director's Report: May 2017

Read Article

INSTALL & H2H Partnership Reaches First Year Milestone

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: Ron Zimmerman

Read Article

INSTALL Director's Report: April 2017

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: Jim Wilkinson

Read Article

Laticrete Joins Endorsement of Substrate Prep Certification

Read Article

INSTALL Director's Report: March 2017

Read Article

INSTALL Included in Master Spec, Provides VA with Peace of Mind

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: Heather Rice

Read Article

Why Moisture Testing is a Step that Can’t be Ignored

Read Article

INSTALL Director's Report: February 2017

Read Article

INSTALL Insights: Resilients

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: Tom Sheridan

Read Article

Industry Leaders Endorse the INSTALL Substrate Prep Certification

Read Article

Flooring System Success: Get it Right from the Ground Up

Read Article

INSTALL Director's Report: January 2017

Read Article

INSTALL's Certified Installation Manager Scholarship Winner

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: Tom Lutz

Read Article

INSTALL Takes on Installation’s Challenges

Read Article

INSTALL Director's Report: December 2016

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: Brian Redshaw

Read Article

INSTALL & H2H Bring Veterans to the Flooring Industry

Read Article

INSTALL Insights: Selecting the Right Contractor

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: Garrett Maki

Read Article

INSTALL Director's Report: October 2016

Read Article

Canadian National Apprenticeship Contest

Read Article

INSTALL Launches Substrate Certification Program

Read Article

INSTALL combats skilled labor crisis with training

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: Kirk Kazienko

Read Article

INSTALL Director's Report: September 2016

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: Laura Graham-Sawchyn

Read Article

INSTALL Director's Report: August 2016

Read Article

UBC Southern Council Collective Bargaining Agreement

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: Bryan Kear

Read Article

This Month at INSTALL: July 2016

Read Article

INSTALL Director's Report: July 2016

Read Article

Consolidated Carpet Supports St. Francis Pantries & Shelters

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: Barb Kidwell

Read Article

INSTALL Director's Report: June 2016

Read Article

VA Taps INSTALL for Master Construction Specification

Read Article

INSTALL Recap: NeoCon 2016

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: Eric Kastner

Read Article

INSTALL Partners with BHI for Haiti Build

Read Article

INSTALL Launches Surface Prep Certification

Read Article

INSTALL Director's Report: May 2016

Read Article

INSTALL Regional Council News: April 2016

Read Article

INSTALL Profile: David Gross

Read Article

2016 Starnet Design Awards

Read Article

INSTALL Expands Training in Central South Market

Read Article

INSTALL Director's Report: April 2016

Read Article

Substrate and Subfloor Installations for High-Quality Flooring

Read Article

VIDEO: The INSTALL Expansion Partnership Program

Read Article

VIDEO: The INSTALL Advantage

Read Article