Welcome to AFSA40, held at the JW Marriott San Antonio Hill Country Resort & Spa.

Texas-Sized Training at AFSA40

Over 50 Industry Experts to Present Over 60 Seminars 

The Texas-sized tradition will be on display at AFSA40: Convention, Exhibition & Apprentice Competition, to be held September 18-21, 2021, with a whopping 100 hours of training across 60 different seminars with 50 industry subject matter experts (SMEs). Nine technical and managerial tracks have been developed, tailored to meet your educational needs. Attendees can follow the seminars on any given track or mix and match.

“AFSA will take all safety measures recommended by the CDC and the JW Marriott San Antonio Hill Country to keep everyone safe as we look forward to the opportunity to meet face-to-face at AFSA40 once again,” comments Marlene Garrett, CMP, AFSA’s senior director of meetings & education services. “By September, and considering the safety of all involved, we hope everyone will look forward to getting back together at the most anticipated getaway event of the year, the AFSA40 convention!”

Below is a brief description of the tracks and sample seminars planned for AFSA40. Many seminars cover multiple tracks so attendees can customize their learning experience. New this year is a daily “Ask the Experts” interactive seminar featuring the industry’s top technical minds! Other seminar tracks include field supervisory training, free training for Authorities Having Jurisdiction (AHJs), and NextGen Day. 


Ask the Experts – Presented Daily! This is your opportunity to ask a panel of the industry’s top technical minds about any NFPA standard. With dozens of applicable standards on a constant three-year update cycle, it can be difficult to keep up to date. Our panel of experts literally wrote the book and will be on hand to discuss all your burning technical questions. They can help with questions ranging from understanding the actual updates to decoding the intent and historical framework of the standards. This interactive seminar is intended to help you find answers to questions that are otherwise hard to find. We challenge you to try and stump our experts! Experts currently scheduled to participate include Wes Baker, FM Global; Kerry Bell, PE, FSFPE, UL LLC; Tracey Bellamy, PE, CFPS, CWBSP, Telgian Corporation; Bob Caputo, CET, CFPS, AFSA; John Denhardt, PE, FSFPE, AFSA;  Mark Fessenden, Johnson Controls, Inc.; James Golinveaux, Viking Group; Kevin Hall, M. Eng, P.E., CET, CWBSP, PSFPE, AFSA; Steve Leyton, Protection Design and Consulting; Travis Mack, SET, MFP Design, LLC; Steven Scandaliato, CFPS, SET, SDG, LLC; Terry Victor, SET, Johnson Controls Fire Protection; Cary Webber, Reliable Automatic Sprinkler Co., Inc.; and Martin Workman, Viking Group. 2.0 Hours | 0.2 CEUs | 2.0 CPDs

Installation Track

The Installation track will feature 16 different seminars focusing on the installation of water-based fire protection systems. Seminar topics include NFPA 13, 14, and 20; AFSA’s popular “Sprinkler Challenges,” FM data sheets, fire pumps, attic protection, and obstruction rules.

NFPA 20 – Fire Pump Sizing, Selection, and Installation Steve Baird; Armstrong Pumps & John Denhardt, P.E., FSFPE; AFSA Where needed, fire pumps are an essential component of a water-based suppression system. Selecting the appropriate driver and pump is a critical component of a successful and profitable installation project. This seminar examines how to determine the need for a fire pump along with choosing the proper pump capacity. The latest information and requirements for acceptance testing and periodic inspection, testing, and maintenance will be discussed. This seminar concludes with a review of some common issues and mistakes made when designing, installing, and inspecting/testing fire pumps. 2.0 Hours | 0.2 CEUs| 2.0 CPDs

Inspection, Testing, and Maintenance (ITM) Track

Learn the ins and outs of inspection, testing, and maintenance with AFSA’s ITM track. NFPA 25 will be a big focus of the 13 seminars in this track, but other topics and standards will be covered, such as updates to NFPA 3 Commissioning and NFPA 4 Integrated Testing.

NFPA 25, 2020 Edition: Significant Changes – John Johnson, CFPS & Joshua McDonald, CFPS; AFSA Significant changes are included in the 2020 edition of NFPA 25. This presentation will review the various changes made to this newest edition of NFPA 25, describe why the changes were made, and explain the impact they will have on the fire protection industry. Some proposed changes that weren’t made will also be discussed, and potential changes to the 2023 edition will be presented. Feedback will be encouraged on other changes that are needed to future editions of this standard. 1.5 Hours | 0.15 CEUs | 1.5 CPDs

Design Track

If design is on your mind, AFSA has you covered with 18 different seminars. Topics include single-point-density with James Golinveaux of Viking Group, standpipe design, and fire pumps. 

Single Point Density – James Golinveaux; Viking Group. Density/Area method of hydraulically calculating a sprinkler system has served us well for many years, but it is time for it to go. Join us for this seminar to learn the history of the density curve development and why it’s time for a new approach. Design pressure is a better method for evaluating performance, but we still have more to learn. New research has identified that the operating pressure and sprinkler type is more important than the theoretical density delivered. 1.5 Hours | 0.15 CEUs |1.5 CPDs

Code Updates Track

Learn the latest updates to all NFPA codes and standards and other related guidance in this track. Eight seminars will be presented, focusing on NFPA 13, 2019 edition reorganization, NFPA 13, 2022 edition; NFPA 25, 2020 edition; FM DS 8-9 and 8-34; and other standards.

NFPA 13 Changes in 2022 Edition – Bob Caputo, CFPS, CET; AFSA This session will review the changes made during the latest revision cycle to NFPA 13 that are contained within the 2022 edition of the newly adopted standard. Specific changes that will affect the sprinkler contractor will be highlighted. Additionally, the results of the CAMs will be discussed and provide background on the issue and the final decisions made by the technical committees and standards council. 1.5 Hours | 0.15 CEUs | 1.5 CPDs

“Other” Technical Track

This catch-all track with 18 seminars will cover other technical topics of interest to those in the fire sprinkler industry: updates on NFPA 915 remote inspections; dry, preaction, and deluge valves; choosing a dry pipe system filling solution; nitrogen use in fire sprinkler systems; heat and smoke detectors for pre-action/releasing Systems; NFPA 291 waterflow testing.

Dry, Preaction, and Deluge Valves – Martin Workman; Viking Group This seminar describes various operating mechanisms and common and unique capabilities of dry, preaction, and deluge valves, including the types of dry valves (differential and mechanical) and preaction valves (single, double, and non-interlock). Example applications will be addressed to identify where each valve type should be considered and why. The interaction of each valve type with accessories, such as air supplies, air maintenance devices, nitrogen generators, and accelerators will be described, along with best practices. 1.5 Hours | 0.15 CEUs | 1.5 CPDs

Challenge Track

Are you up for the challenge? Test your knowledge in three seminars covering NFPA 13, NFPA 14, and NFPA 20. You might be surprised to learn what you know—and what you don’t know!

Fire Pump Challenge: NFPA 20, 2019 Edition – John Denhardt, P.E., FSFPE  & Kevin Hall, M.Eng, P.E., CET, CWBSP, PMSFPE, AFSA This audience participation seminar will challenge the attendee to see how well they know NFPA 20. The presenters will present questions, and the audience will participate in attempting to provide the correct answers. After the answer is presented, a discussion will occur on why the answer is correct. References to the standard will be provided. Electric- and diesel-driven fire pumps will be discussed with an emphasis on installation requirements. The test header is an important feature to verify that the pump is able to meet system demand. When the test header is not sized per the tables in NFPA 20, it is critical that the designer is able to perform an accurate hydraulic calculation to verify compliance. 1.5 Hours | 0.15 CEUs | 1.5 CPDs

Business Management Track

This track is intended for management staff and will be presented across 10 seminars, including working with independent designers, enhancing the value of your fire protection company, field supervisory training, becoming a destination employer, and hiring and retaining the right people.

The Strategic Selling Series – Rob Mosley; Next Level Exchange Your prospects and clients are very busy people. Their jobs require them to make many decisions daily and frequently with a sense of urgency. From the moment you connect by email, voice mail, or in a live conversation, the clock is running, and your prospect is judging… judging whether you act in a professional and competent manner; judging whether or not you open the conversation with confidence and knowledge of this person’s role and of the work being done; and judging as to whether they want to invest time with you in a conversation or move on the tasks and people they deem as more worthy of their time. 2.0 Hours | 0.2 CEUs | 2.0 CPDs

NextGen Track

AFSA’s Next Generation Initiative (NextGen) is pleased to present NextGen Day on September 19 during AFSA40. This full day is open to all industry members and will feature three seminars, a leadership forum, and an evening mixer. For more information on AFSA’s NextGen, visit www.firesprinkler.org/nextgen.

AHJ Track

Authorities Having Jurisdiction (AHJs) are invited to attend AFSA40 on September 21 for a plan review seminar and to tour the exhibition hall free of charge. Registration is required.

Fire Sprinkler System Plan Review (AHJs Only) – Steven Scandaliato, CFPS, SET, SDG, LLC and Travis Mack, MFP Design, LLC Review of automatic fire sprinkler system plans has become very complex as the 2019 edition of NFPA 13 has been completely re-organized and expanded to provide more information than ever before on fire sprinkler system design and installation. This seminar will guide attendees in a discussion of the requirements for plans and calculations contained in Chapter 27 and will include an exercise in hands-on review of a fire sprinkler system plan, including the overall design concept, hydraulic calculations, seismic bracing, and the underground supply system. Evaluation of the decisions made on the part of the system designer dealing with hazard and commodity classification, building construction type, positioning of the sprinkler and their spacing, and materials selection will all be among the topics which are a part of the review. This seminar will rely heavily on attendee participation and will generate a list of items which require further clarification or revisions. A question-and-answer session will follow the completion of the plan review. Plan reviewers and field inspectors should find this seminar helpful and will most likely find areas where their own review checklist can be modified or improved. An architect’s scale and a copy of the 2019 edition of NFPA 13 are strongly recommended for attendees. 4.0 Hours | 0.4 CEUs | 4.0 CPDs

Deep in the Heart of Texas!

Come on down to San Antonio and surround yourself in the natural landscape of Southwestern splendor at the JW Marriott San Antonio Hill Country Resort & Spa, site of AFSA40. This award-winning resort offers modern rooms with countryside views, soothing spa treatments, and family fun in the sprawling River Bluff Experience aquatic park. Dine at one of the resort’s seven distinctive restaurants featuring modern Texas cuisine, a lively sports bar, fine steak house, delectable local fare, and hand-crafted cocktails. The resort also offers outdoor tennis courts, jogging and nature trails, table tennis, a whirlpool spa, and more. 

The AFSA group rate for the JW Marriott San Antonio Hill Country Resort & Spa is $254 per night plus tax. This rate includes self-parking and complimentary internet in guest rooms. Hotel reservations can be made here. Group rates are available for stays from September 14-25, 2021, but reservations must be made by August 20, 2021, to secure AFSA convention group rates. After August 20, room rates are based on availability.

New Sponsor Opportunity for Contractors

AFSA member contractor companies have an exclusive opportunity in 2021 to sponsor a networking meal table. Show your support for AFSA programs! Your donation dollars go back into the program you select: ITM Inspector Development program, Fire Sprinkler Fitter Apprenticeship Training curriculum, webinars, Beginning Fire Sprinkler System Planning School, traveling and chapter seminars, or the program of your choice! For more information on this exciting opportunity, visit www.firesprinkler.org/sponsorship.

Membership has Its Benefits

Not an AFSA member? Now is the perfect time to join! AFSA is currently offering a six-month trial membership for contractors and a 12-month trial for AHJs. With your trial membership, you are entitled to a range of benefits and services to support you, your employees, your business, and the industry. Membership provides the opportunity to learn about AFSA and its multitude of benefits—risk free. One of those benefits is the ability to register for AFSA40 at membership price levels! For more information on AFSA membership, visit www.firesprinkler.org/trial.

Come on Down!

Don’t miss your opportunity to be a part of the celebration! Click here to learn more about AFSA40 and mark your calendars for September 18-21. You can also subscribe to or “follow” AFSA social media to keep up-to-date on events:


Visit AFSA40’s website at www.firesprinkler.org/AFSA40 to explore the schedule and make hotel reservations. Convention registration is now live! Register before June 30 to secure the lowest early-bird prices. Come on down and join the celebration as AFSA celebrates 40 years of service and dedication to its members and to the fire sprinkler industry. This is one Texas-sized celebration you don’t want to miss!

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