About Us

The Furniture Training Company (FTC) started just over 10 years ago and was founded by three graduates of Utah State University. Our training program has now been used in more than 1,000 retail locations with nearly 25,000 salespeople. We know that our training improves companies and we are excited to help you succeed in your business.

Meet Our Team!

Mike Petersen, PhD

President, Co-founder

aka "The Comic Sailboat Captain"

Mike Petersen, PhD

President, Co-founder, aka "The Comic Sailboat Captain"

aka "The Comic Sailboat Captain"

Mike is the first half of the brains behind The Furniture Training Company. His tireless determination and infectious smile helped him earned his doctoral degree in the field of instructional design and learning science. This means he learned how to learn. He's been un-single for 32 years and has loved every minute of it. When he's not bringing down Thor's comedy hammer with his humorous trash talk in the office, he'll be screaming, "I'm on top of the world!" from the comfort of his sailboat as he sails off into the sunset.

Mike Petersen
Leston Drake

Leston Drake, PhD

CLO, Co-founder

aka "Captain Norris"

Leston Drake, PhD

CLO, Co-founder

aka "Captain Norris"

Aside from looking identical to Chuck Norris and Captain Obvious, Leston is the second half of the brains behind The Furniture Training Company. He also earned his doctoral degree in the field of instructional design and learning science. He's been happily married for 20+ years to this company, and also the love of his life. When he's not calling staff meetings and sending out TicklRs, he enjoys fast cars, Kenny G, and Korean BBQ.

Mike Paulsin

Business Development

aka "The Renaissance Man"

Mike Paulsin

Business Development

aka "The Renaissance Man"

Leonardo Da Vinci. Galileo. Isaac Newton. Mike Paulsin. These are just a few examples of who we compare Mike to in our office. He is an endless supply of talent and knowledge, and he utilizes his skills to grow our business and the furniture industry. When he's not pulling a hammy and tearing his Achilles, he is the perfect asset to any team.

Mike Paulsin
Michael Petersen

Michael Petersen

Director of Sales and Marketing

aka. "The Blond Bombshell"

Michael Petersen

Director of Sales and Marketing

aka. "The Blond Bombshell"

Aside from his fondness for the T.V. series The Office, specialty sodas, and hitting the highest notes imaginable when singing Happy Birthday, he loves directing our sales and marketing departments. Fantasy basketball is his passion, and being tall, blonde, and handsome is his calling. His continual effort to improve his family's lives, our lives, and our client's lives, is the heartbeat of our organization.

Andrew Clark

Marketing Manager

aka "The Hipster Millennial"

Andrew Clark

Marketing Manager

aka "The Hipster Millennial"

You'll generally find Andrew with some sort of caffeinated beverage in one hand, a camera in the other, and rocking out to the theme songs of Reading Rainbow and Mister Rogers Neighborhood. Andrew gave up a degree in ophthalmology to follow his passion for marketing, and received his degree in digital and video marketing. Like any Millennial he received a degree that lets him play on social media all day long and get paid for it. In his spare time, he loves wearing indoor scarfs, putting Sriracha on everything, and secretly trying to become a famous vlogger.

Andrew Clark
Becca Kienitz

Becca Kienitz

Head Designer

aka "Bec-CAW"

Becca Kienitz

Head Designer

aka "Becca-CAW"

After studying fine arts and graphic design, she decided to take her talents to the "South Beach" of Utah, The Furniture Training Company. Becca is the magic creative fountain of the office. When given a job to do, she magically makes it ten times better than even Dr Suess could have imagined. She loves long walks on the beach, dancing like no one is watching, and playing with her puppy... even though she considers herself a cat person.

Ryan Schmidt

Senior Developer

aka "The Coding Beethoven"

Ryan Schmidt

Senior Developer

aka "The Coding Beethoven"

Who needs a pianist when you can have the angelic keyboard clicks of Mr. Ryan Schmidt tickle your musical fantasy? He composes these heavenly sounds into a beautiful symphony of websites, training programs, and anything The Furniture Training Company needs developed. Ryan brought the home row keys to life in college, receiving his degree in graphic design. When he's not being a coding composer, he loves going fishing with his wife and kids.

Ryan Schmidt
Andrew Clark

Chris Sorensen

Senior Account Manager

aka "The Man Behind the Curtain"

Chris Sorensen

Senior Account Manager

aka "The Man Behind the Curtain"

Besides being the happy, helpful voice you hear on the other end of the phone, Chris is the man behind the curtain making sure your every accounts needs are met. In his spare time, he enjoys vintage cars, underwater basket weaving, growing mustaches, and spending quality time knitting with his family. Just kidding about the knitting.

Derek Drake

Audio Engineer, Senior Customer Solutions Rep

aka "Derek Zoolander"

Derek Drake

Audio Engineer, Senior Customer Solutions Rep

aka "Derek Zoolander"

Derek is the calm, cool, and collected one in the office. This could be caused by his blue steel looks and personal training mindset. Derek has found out there is more to life than being really, really ridiculously good looking. This is why Derek has become our senior customer solutions rep and audio engineer for all projects. When he's out of the office he loves playing video games and spending time with his wife. He's married... sorry ladies.

Derek Drake
Mark Lacy

Mark Lacy

Former President and Co-Founder of Furniture Training Company

aka "Mr. Turn To!"

Mark Lacy

Former President and Co-Founder of Furniture Training Company

aka "Mr. Turn To!"

Mark retired on December 31, 2014. Mark is the reason that we got into furniture training, and his good reputation lives on in the office and within the industry.