NKBA History

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NKBA: 50 Years of Leadership Through Learning 

NKBA is proud to be celebrating its 50th Anniversary this year, marking half a century of dedication to industry education, networking and raising the professionalism of our membership. Here are just a few of the milestones in our accomplished history.  See more at Then & Now

 

AIKD (Now NKBA) Founded April 1963

Inspired by a letter from Kitchen Kompact rep Leon Raider expressing the need for a dealer association, a small group of kitchen dealers met in 1963 near Philadelphia, contributed $463, and formed the American Institute of Kitchen Dealers (AIKD). Dues were set at $10 a month and H. Dean Church of Custom Kitchens by Church, Swarthmore, Pa., was elected the first president.

The group set goals 50 years ago that are still the cornerstone of the association today, including “Education, Standards and Advertising and Public Relations.”

First CKD 1968   

An early founder of AIKD, Robert Wieland, became the first CKD after the Association spent several years developing the requirements and applying for a patent on the term “Certified Kitchen Designer.” 

The program goal was to ensure that “kitchen specialist is a valued and recognized profession” and to encourage people to “make kitchen design a career.” 

First Kitchen Industry Technical Manuals 1972

In keeping with its goal of furthering industry education AIKD signed an agreement with the University of Illinois Small Homes Council to develop the first five Kitchen Industry Technical Manuals. These became the basis of certification.

First Kitchen & Bath Industry Show (KBIS) 1981

In 1981, the AIKD Kitchen Show changed its name to the Kitchen & Bath Industry Show (KBIS). That show, initially a very small gathering, has grown to be the largest professional kitchen and bath industry show in the world.

Association Name Change 1983 

In 1983, the American Institute of Kitchen Dealers changed its name to the National Kitchen & Bath Association (NKBA) to address the interests of the growing bathroom industry. That same year, the NKBA created the Ambassadors’ Club to recognize members who have added to the growth of the Association by recruiting new members. 

First CBD 1989

The Certified Bath Designer (CBD) program was created by NKBA to certify professionals who specialize in the design, planning, and execution of residential bathrooms, and prove advanced knowledge of technical and personal communication skills required to succeed as a design specialist. Martha Kerr became the first CBD in 1989.

Hall of Fame Created 1989

To mark its 25th Anniversary, NKBA created the industry’s first Hall of Fame. It honors individuals who have contributed to the growth and professionalism of the Association and the kitchen and bath industry as a whole.

First Kitchen & Bath Design Guidelines 1992

First revised in 1992, the Association's 31 Kitchen Guidelines and 27 Bathroom Guidelines now reflect the current industry environment, future trends, consumer lifestyles, new research, new building codes, and current industry practices.

First Lead Generation Program and First Consumer Kitchen & Bath Planners  1995

NKBA began an ambitious lead generation program for its members in 1995 and offered its first consumer planners.The “Direct to Your Door” consumer marketing program generated 4,000 leads that year. 

Today the Kitchen Planner and Bath Planner produce qualified leads of consumers who are actively researching a kitchen or bath project.

First PRLs Published 2006

In 2006 NKBA totally revamped its Kitchen and Bath Industry Technical Manuals, creating instead the full-color Professional Resource Library. The nine volumes, all written and reviewed by industry experts, are now being updated and expanded.

First Kitchen & Bath Career Center and Industry Directory 2011 - 2012

Created in 2012, the Kitchen & Bath Career Center  (KitchenAndBathCareerCenter.com) serves as the premier electronic recruitment resource for the industry. The NKBA’s Business to Business Industry Directory offers a way for industry professionals to conduct targeted searches for products and services.

New Design and Construction Week Show For KBIS and IBS Announced 2013

Beginning in 2014, the new Design and Construction Week, with KBIS and IBS side-by-side, will put NKBA at the epicenter of one of the world’s largest gatherings focused on new ideas, products and technologies to design, build and remodel homes. 

First Learning Path Program 2013 -2014

Staying true to its original mission, NKBA enters its 50th year beginning the roll out of its most robust educational program ever, The Learning Paths, with career tracks in eight competency areas from beginner through advanced levels. All are offered conveniently through its new Learning Management System (LMS).

 

Today, the NKBA is the premier association for kitchen and bath professionals, with nearly 60,000 members.

  


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