If you ask Mark Zarzeczny why he attends NADCA’s annual conference every year, he has an answer —more like several answers — ready for you.
It could be the technical sessions, which gives members a chance to learn new skills or study industry trends in one place. Or maybe it’s the keynote presentation, which offers insights from public figures you’re not likely to otherwise meet. Then again, the product show usually has lots of new technology on display.
Zarzeczny says they’re all great reasons to come to the National Air Duct Cleaners Association’s annual conference next week in sunny Rancho Mirage, California. The event, which runs Monday-Wednesday at the Westin Mission Hills resort, will offer three days full of educational seminars, industry training and certification testing and a little time for fun, organizers say.
This year is the 29th annual NADCA convention, and it looks like it might set a few records, says Zarzeczny, who has been involved in the duct cleaning industry for 25 years and is an association board member. He owns Advanced Clean Air Systems Specialists LLC in Philadelphia.
A record number of members are participating in the air system cleaning specialist certification training and taking the exam.
“Actually, it’s getting too big, which is a great thing,” he says. Conference attendance looks likely to set a record and trade show exhibitor space and the hotel room block are sold out. However, officials say there's still time to register to attend at annualmeeting.nadca.com. On-site registration is also available.
While some associations struggle to maintain the membership roster, NADCA has an enviable renewal rate, he says.
“We must be doing something right — almost everybody is coming back,” Zarzeczny says. “NADCA is doing fantastic. NADCA is growing.”
Part of that growth is coming from overseas — Europe and Australia especially. The association has formed a close working relationship with AIISA, the Italian Association of Hygienists Systems Aeraulic, which is similar to NADCA. It’s not uncommon to see duct cleaners from Italy, Australia or South America at the conference.
That’s one of the goals of current association President Richard Lantz, Zarzeczny adds.
“Our president’s ambitious and that’s one of the steps of his platform (international growth),” he says.
Attendees at this year’s conference will find that seminars go far beyond duct cleaning and duct sealing and cover topics such as social media, mold and business growth. And that makes sense, Zarzeczny says, since most NADCA members are involved in much more.
“‘Air duct cleaning' is really a misnomer for what (many members) do,” he says. “We’re ventilation hygiene specialists, which is so involved with so many other aspects of indoor air quality.”
Of course, many NADCA members’ businesses are focused on duct cleaning, the association adds.
Among the broader IAQ-related sessions this year are “The Latest Product and Technology Innovations for Improving IAQ” at 10 a.m. PDT Wednesday and “Defeating the Effects of Mold and Mold Spores on Living Environments” at 11 a.m. PDT.
Giving this year’s keynote speech at 10 a.m. PDT Tuesday will be sportswriter Don Yaeger. The former Sports Illustrated editor, newspaper columnist and book author will talk about greatness and how it can be achieved.
The full conference schedule is available at https://annualmeeting.nadca.com/. Zarzeczny says all NADCA members should attend.
“Everyone typically comes away with one or two great ideas,” he says.