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November 2022

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Happy Holidays

L.U. 1 (as,c,ees,ei,em,es,et,fm,i,mt,ptc,rts,s,se,spa,st&ws), ST. LOUIS, MO — Season's greetings to you all. The second half of the year has been exceptionally busy here in our local.

We had a tough negotiation session for our inside agreement, though we got a solid contract. We were able to reclaim language and conditions that had been surrendered in years past, and we got a 12% wage increase over the 3-year life of the contract and added Martin Luther King Day as a Local 1 holiday.

Our local's motorcycle chapter had the honor of hosting the first of many Midwest Solidarity rides. Members from California to New York came and helped to make this ride a resounding success. The highlight was riding to the Henry Miller Museum and Founders Park. Solemnly reflecting upon the vision our founders executed with much sacrifice, we vowed to continue carrying it forward.

Local 1's hockey team hosted a bragging-rights game with Local 562 Plumbers and Pipefitters. Sadly, we did not prevail. The event was a huge success, with both teams vowing endless rematches for worthy charitable causes. To read some more on our hockey team, check out the June online edition of the Electrical Worker.

For some bragging on our own: Sylvester Taylor, recording secretary and director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion for our IBEW/NECA Electrical Connection, has been selected as an apprenticeship ambassador by the U.S. Department of Labor. Congrats, Brother Taylor! (Editor's Note: See our story, "DOL Apprenticeship Ambassador Program Taps IBEW Talent," in Circuits of this issue.)

I also would like to remind our members of the annual coat drive coordinated by the EWMC. If you have coats that are not being used, please bring them by the union hall or call 314-647-5900 to make arrangements to have them picked up.

Kyle Hunter, P.S.


L.U. 11 (em,i,rts&spa), LOS ANGELES, CA — Our local is slowly chipping away at refineries who have hired nonunion electrical contractors to conduct testing of electrical equipment at their owned-and-operated facilities. Within the last few months, through our Compliance Department, Local 11 brought action against two refineries that disregarded SB54 language, circumvented wage rules, ignored skilled-and-trained requirements and sidestepped PLA language that applied to the project sites. One of the refineries voluntarily self-corrected the violation while the second refinery released an RFP to the testing services. Once we obtain the official ruling, we plan to use these findings to address the issue with the remaining refineries in our jurisdiction.

On a lighter note, on Aug. 6 we held our annual Local 11 picnic for our members and their families. We had the largest attendance to date with just over 3,000 members, their families and vendors present to enjoy a day of camaraderie and brotherhood. We had games, bingo and other activities for our members and their children to partake in. Our welfare committees had goods for sale to raise funds for our members in need. Food and drinks were plentiful and the selection of raffle gifts available made the day even better. All this was made possible by the group of members who volunteered their time to ensure the picnic was enjoyed by all.

Robert Corona, P.S.

Expanded Training Center

L.U. 17 (catv,em,lctt,o&u), DETROIT, MI — We are proud to announce that our membership has approved another $1.5-million investment in our local's training center. Undeveloped land was purchased in 2019 to establish the training center, and the grand opening was held in 2021.

Current training classes include:

  • LCTT Apprentices
  • LCTT Boot Camp
  • ALBAT Apprentices (Lineman, Substation, Traffic)
  • Crane Operation and Simulator
  • ISA Certification
  • CDL Training

Future programs will include classes for:

  • URD Cable Splicing
  • Underground Utility
  • Transmission
  • Teledata
  • Renewable Energies
  • EV Charging Stations

This additional investment (bringing the total to $2.5 million) will allow us to fulfill our vision of creating a world-class training facility for our current members and future generations of IBEW workers.

James Shaw, B.M.


Local 17 members approved additional investment in a state-of-the-art training center to provide world-class education for current and future IBEW members.

Local 43 Honors Apprentice Graduates

L.U. 43 (em,i&rts), SYRACUSE, NY — Congratulations to our local's apprenticeship classes of 2020, 2021 and 2022 for successfully completing their apprenticeships — they are now journeymen wiremen! A graduation ceremony was held in June at the Oncenter Convention Center in Syracuse.

Local 43's graduates are:

2020 — Amelia Bumpsted, Zachery Carey, Eric Cummins, Jonathan Hibbard, Jesse Kilmer, Daniel Miller, Ryan Perritano, Timothy Powers, Kenneth Robotham, Edmund Royal, Francis Talarico, Jay Tebo, Timothy Traub and Nelson Traver

2021 — Joseph Allen, Cory Anthony, Jeremiah Castello, Aaron Elmore, Patrick Gignilliat, Daniel Gray, Perciles Hayes, Allen Holdridge, William Houde, Colby Kennedy, Joel Kenyon, Trista Kuhn, Eamon Lacy, Thomas Lippke, Zachary Maine, Vadim Olesh, Andrew Rogers, Joelle Ryan, Timothy Schimdt, Steven Simone, Douglas Smith, Brian Stevens, Darryl Stivers, Alyssa Tassone, Duncan Taylor and Donald Williamson

2022 — Nicholas Barricella, Kylee Beckwith, Joshua Bobbette, John Bornemann, Joshua Bucko, Jared Crast, Mark Cullen, Anthony Dicaprio, Justin Durham, Patrick Engle, Evan Fryc, Zachary Funari, Sarah-Jane Getman, Jesse Gibson, Will Goebel, Bryan Harvey, Matthew Henry, Maverick Janes, Sergii Kaplun, Bryce Leitten, Ryan Light, Andrew Low, Dante Mallaro, Eric Mascareno, Trevor Norris, Mark Odle, Timothy Orr, Noah Richerson, Joseph Rotella, Matthew Siau, Robert Miller, Nathan Siriano, Jeffrey Smith, Kyler Spencer, Michael Stauber, Donald Stockbridge, Colby Stratton, Brandon Towers, Mark Tracy, Kevin Van Epps, Lance Wheatley and Christian Wilson

Alan Marzullo, B.M./F.S.


A graduation ceremony for Local 43's new journeymen wiremen was held in June at the Oncenter Convention Center in Syracuse, NY.

Bargaining Updates

L.U. 47 (lctt,mo,o,u&uow), DIAMOND BAR, CA — Greetings brothers and sisters: At the time of this writing, our local is planning its motorcycle run for Oct. 2.

In negotiations news:

  • SCE — A proposal to consolidate Steam, Hydro and Catalina into one was held on June 29; bargaining continues.
  • SCE — In the Tristen Mends termination case, arbitration post-hearing briefs have been filed; a decision is expected in early September.
  • City of Banning — In utility and general units, negotiations continue.
  • City of Vernon — A successor agreement was voted on and passed with 3% for each year; new members from previous contractor were included in the vote as well as new members.
  • City of Riverside — In utility and supervisory units, a successor memorandum of understanding (MOU) was ratified by a vote of over 80% for the new 3-year agreement.

In upcoming events, Local 47's Christmas celebration will take place on Dec. 17. We hope to see you there!

We are sad to report the deaths of John Benavides, Chuck Burnet, David Crocket, Kenneth Ensman, Jim "Lossie" Olberding, Hank Rivera, Rodney Swift and Rodney Williams. Our condolences and prayers are with their loved ones.

Work safe and buy union!

Mitch Smith, P.S.


Local 47's Business Manager/Financial Secretary Colin Lavin welcomed members to Union Night at Dodger Stadium on Aug. 5.

New RENEW Committee Members

L.U. 51 (catv,lctt,o,ptc,rtb,t,u&uow), SPRINGFIELD, IL — After a long summer of contract negotiations with Ameren Illinois, System Council U-5, which includes our local, ratified a 4-year contract for CILCO, IP Clerical/Technical and IP Physical on Aug. 26. Local 51 has committed to plan for our 2026 negotiations immediately, so please attend your monthly unit meetings for discussion on this important issue.

We welcome our new RENEW Committee members: Stephanie Carson, Shateveon Goforth (chair), Will Lauzon, Danny Olson, Ty Selby and Preston White. The committee is working towards planning events to promote community and membership engagement.

Transmission and substation work has been picking up, and we expect more work in early winter. Happy Veterans Day to our brothers and sisters, both past and present, who have served.

Karlene Knisley, B.R.

New Locale for Retirees Meeting

L.U. 55 (c,lctt,o&u), DES MOINES, IA — Hello, brothers and sisters! It is Labor Day weekend at the time of this writing, and there was a parade from the Capitol east to the fairgrounds. The route was lined with people, among them many kids wanting candy to be thrown their way.

Our local is very fortunate to have lots of work. It will pick up even more when material arrives on time. Jeremy Logsdon and his crew were getting ready to change out a transformer bank when I last drove by (see the accompanying picture). Ed Kooker is recovering from back surgery and doing very well. The retirees have a new time and place to meet each month: It is now the second Tuesday of the month at 9 a.m. at the Family Cafe, 3900 NE 14th Street. It should be easier to get to and we will have more room.

Please work safely and stay healthy. See you at the Christmas party!

Myron Green, P.S.


Local 55 member Jeremy Logsdon, who works for the Hydaker-Wheatlake Company, on the job along SE Lorenz Drive in Ankeny, Iowa.

Local 89 Honors Longstanding Member

L.U. 89 (catv,em,lctt,o,ptc&t), SEATTLE, WA — As business manager, I recently had the privilege and honor to acknowledge one of our members for 70 years of membership. Brother Patrick CrowE was recognized as the first member to receive such tenure in the history of Local 89. I enjoy the opportunity to recognize our retired members. It is one of the most enjoyable things I get to do as a business manager.

This one was very special for me and the local. I believe that Brother CrowE is the first 70-year-recognition pin that Local 89 has ever presented to a member. Patrick worked for GTE during his career as a union telephone worker. It was my honor to recognize Brother CrowE for this monumental milestone.

It is with sadness in our hearts that we send our thoughts and prayers to the CrowE family, as Patrick passed soon after being recognized for his achievement.

Matt Carroll, B.M.


Local 89 remembers Patrick CrowE, who was recently honored for his 70 years of IBEW service.

Thank you, Dottie Felder!

L.U. 97 (ptc&u), SYRACUSE, NY — In July 2022, history was made at our local in central New York: For the first time, a father and son have both been elected as president/business manager of Local 97. Michael Thomas Shelby, son of Thomas Shelby, replaced long-time President/Business Manager Ted Skerpon, who retired at the end of July. Michael's father, Tom Shelby, was elected as president/business manager of Local 310 under System Council U-11, which was amalgamated in 1994 to form Local 97, where Tom then took on the role of assistant business manager.

An additional milestone was reached at Local 97: In August, member Dorothy "Dottie" Felder celebrated her 50th anniversary with the IBEW. Dorothy is an office tech for National Grid in Syracuse. Her service, dedication and experience are unmatched. Thank you, Dorothy, for all that you have done and continue to do!

Anthony J. Bugge, Treas./Bus. Rep.


Local 97's Dorothy Felder celebrates her 50 years of IBEW service with President/Business Manager Mike Shelby.

Local 103 Visited by VP Harris

L.U. 103 (cs&i), BOSTON, MA — For the first time in the history of our local, we had a visit from the vice president of the United States. It doesn't matter where you land politically — Republican or Democrat, liberal or conservative — it was a historic day at Local 103. A symbolic gesture, perhaps: But it emphasizes and highlights the Biden-Harris administration's strong commitment to working people and to labor unions, especially the IBEW.

Vice President Kamala Harris talked about all the great work getting done for working people, such as the much-anticipated infrastructure bill, which will provide jobs for IBEW members across the country fixing roads and bridges, upgrading the nation's power grid and providing the American people with access to internet broadband; the Inflation Reduction Act, including climate and health-care provisions that will lower costs of health care and prescription drugs and reduce greenhouse gas emissions as well as the federal deficit, targeting wealthy tax cheats who have been stealing from workers for decades. Additionally, the CHIPS and Science Act, a major bill investing in semiconductor manufacturing and scientific research, will lessen our dependency on outsourcing good American jobs to Chinese slave-labor factories overseas; the Butch-Lewis Emergency Pension Plan Relief Act will save millions of union workers from losing their hard-earned pensions; and recently passed legislation will help veterans and American heroes who suffer from ailments and cancers related to exposure to toxic burn pits overseas.

Finally, workers have respect at the highest level of government in the Biden-Harris administration. Not only are we hosting and influencing these important discussions, but the IBEW has a seat at the table for the first time in years.

Jimmy Fleming, P.S.


Local 103 Business Manager Louis Antonellis with U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris, who visited the local to discuss legislation that prioritizes working people.

Local 125 LCTTs Ratify CBA

L.U. 125 (lctt,o&u), PORTLAND, OR — On Sept. 1, our local's line-clearance tree trimmers ratified their collective bargaining agreement. Donivan Duncan, Jaron Ellis, Saylor Neher and Eri Patton served on the negotiating committee with Business Manager Travis Eri and Business Representative Thomas Lux.

Eri explained that the local hopes this agreement leads to improved retention and attracts new line-clearance tree trimmers.

"This committee worked really hard to secure a contract that continues increasing our total compensation package," said Lux. "I'm proud of our members who stuck together until this third vote." Thank you to Chris Brockway for serving as election judge and Paea Nguamo as the teller.

Bonneville Power Administration members voted to approve a 3-year extension of their contract.

As a reminder, please make sure that your contact information is current with the local, and, no matter who earns your vote, participate in any upcoming elections. Make sure that your candidate supports working families and our core union values associated with organizing and negotiating. Lastly, if you're not already part of the Death Benefit Fund, please consider doing so; call the Local 125 Business Office at 503-262-9125 for more information.

Marcy Grail, A.B.M.

Local 131 Installs New Officers

L.U. 131 (i,rtb,rts,se&spa), KALAMAZOO, MI — Currently the work outlook is steady in Kalamazoo. Most projects will be ramping up during the winter.

In July, we installed new officers into our local:

  • President — Leroy Crabtree
  • Vice-President — Randy Williams
  • Recording Secretary — Kari Collison
  • Treasurer — Scott Benson
  • Business Manager/ Financial Secretary — Morris Applebey
  • Executive Board — Jon Current, Terry Clark, Timothy Haydon,
    Nick Lemmerhart, Collin Foote and Adam Mitzel
  • Examining Board — Erik Lockwood, Joe Fischer, Greg Sturm,
    Ryan Lewis and Paul Barrons

We congratulate the apprenticeship class of 2022 including Adam Beilby, Jason Boyer II, Chris Crabtree, Mike Dunigan, Josie Hovious, Brian Jones, Wade Kaptur, Ed LeBoeuf, Cory McCulloch, David Moss, Chris Sage, Trevor Tatroe, Chris Totten, Corey Werner-Hoskins and Matthew Wood.

Check out the Local 131 website! Christine Bohms has done a fantastic job organizing it.

The retirees Christmas luncheon will be at Martell's on Wed., Dec. 21.

Morris A. Applebey, B.M./F.S.

Celebrating Labor Day, Past and Present

L.U. 245 (govt,lctt,o,rtb&u), TOLEDO, OH — Our local would like to thank its members for working safely and maintaining the principles of the Code of Excellence both on and off the job. We would like to extend a special thank you for those members and their families that participated in this year's Toledo Labor Day Parade. The parade is an annual tradition that celebrates the achievements of organized labor and its ongoing efforts to deliver better wages and conditions for working families. This year's parade was doubled in size following the canceled and hampered Labor Days of 2020 and 2021 due to the pandemic.

Work on the outside construction branch has been steady with multiple new projects on the horizon. Local 245 has executed several memorandums of agreement (MOAs) with Toledo Edison (FirstEnergy), which have improved benefits and working conditions for the members that work at the utility.

From all of us as Local 245, we hope you and your family are able to spend quality time with each other over the upcoming holidays.

Brian Gendaszek, P.S.


Local 245 members and families at the Toledo Labor Day Parade.

Vote 'Yes' to Amendment 1

L.U. 309 (i,lctt,mo,mt,o,rts,spa&u), COLLINSVILLE, IL — On Nov. 8, Illinois will vote on Amendment 1, the Illinois Right to Collective Bargaining Measure. A "yes" vote supports establishing a state constitutional right for employees to organize and bargain collectively through representatives of their choosing to negotiate "wages, hours, and working conditions and to protect their economic welfare and safety at work." Amendment 1 will also prohibit future right-to-work laws. Despite the efforts by the powers-that-be to stop this law, voting "yes" is a simple, non-partisan way to protect the current and future working class.

Local 309 is getting close to rolling out the new Labor Power Express to our members. Labor Power Express is a membership- and dues-tracking software that provides an online system to pay dues and bid on jobs.

Ameren Illinois negotiations resulted in a 14.1% raise, spread over a 4-year agreement, with a 401k enhancement on all hours worked.

The first Gateway Grizzlies event was a successful family outing. In addition to the good weather, the Grizzlies had a great game and won in extra innings.

Carlos S. Perez, R.S.

Giving Thanks for Opportunities

L.U. 343 (i,spa&st), LE SUEUR, MN — Happy Thanksgiving, brothers and sisters: Be thankful for the freedoms we enjoy because of our veterans. Nov. 11, Veterans Day, is a provisional holiday per our collective bargaining agreement. Spend time with your family and your friends, and thank a vet. Remember that the USA has never stopped being great.

In October, the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) held its annual convention and trade show in Austin, Texas. Local 343's fifth-year apprentice Alicia Green was invited to attend. With the recommendation of instructor Casey Saunders and based on Alicia's positive attitude toward the apprenticeship, classroom performance and desire to learn, NECA funded an all-expenses-paid trip for Alicia to Austin. She and other apprentices from across the country were recognized for their achievements during the Apprentice Appreciation Day and a joint member dinner. Of the 36 workshops offered, Women In NECA (WIN)/Future Leaders Round Table interested her the most. The NECA show had over 300 exhibitors on the convention floor.

Thank you, Alicia, for representing Local 343 and for showing how an apprenticeship can offer opportunities of a lifetime.

Be American, buy American and support our economy!

Tom Small, P.S.

Local 351 Hosts Successful Family Picnic

L.U. 351 (c,cs,i,it,lctt,mt,o,se,spa&t), FOLSOM, NJ — On Aug. 6, our local hosted our annual family picnic at Morey's Pier in Wildwood, N.J. We had a wonderful day, and it was so great to see all of our brothers, sisters and families together again having such a fun time. We had more than 600 members and 2,300 people come through the gate. Our contractors donated over $44,000 in door prizes that went to our members and their families. Thank you to all the picnic committee members, business agents and office staff for all the hard work and dedication you all put into making this picnic such a huge success.

Dan Cosner, B.M.


Local 351's Picnic Committee (left to right): Wayne Bumm, Steve DiMatteo, Bob Wisting, John Gray, Tony DeGeorge, Stephen Gandy, Ryck Signor, Andy Helsel, Ray Listman, Daniel Cosner, Lucian Jiacopello, Buddy Blatcher, Tim Santangelo, Joe Trumbetti, Chuck Della Vecchia, Eric Ore, Bill Sneathen and Samantha Vinzinski.

Local 357 Welcomes New Officers

L.U. 357 (c,i,mt&se), LAS VEGAS, NV — We congratulate all of our local's newly elected officers. Thanks for stepping up to the plate. We wish you the very best and have confidence that you will work hard to keep our jurisdiction strong and serve our members well.

Local 357's newly elected officers include President Kevin Kerbs, Vice President Joshua Woods, Recording Secretary Melenie Zavala, Treasurer Ulysses T. Lee and Business Manager/Financial Secretary James Halsey. Our Executive Board members are: Glenn Carpenter, Raquel Dexter, Aaron Pruter, David Riggio, Steven Scheidle and Kenny Torbicki. The Examining Board members are; Joseph Allen, , Noel T. Herberger, Julie-Ann Peeples, Michael Taggart and Doug Ziegenhagen.

Julie-Ann Peeples, P.S.


Local 357's newly elected officers as they pledge their oath of office at the July union meeting. Photo Credit: Jose Torres

Well Done, Brothers

L.U. 369 (em,es,i,lctt,o,ptc,rtb,rts,spa&u), LOUISVILLE, KY — On Sept. 9, 2019, Service Electric Company was changing out a pole for West Kentucky Rural Electric Cooperative Corp. in Mayfield, Ky. The five-man crew had worked all morning to frame out the pole, taking a water break around 10:30 a.m. After the break, they rigged the pole and started lifting it into position when Travis Simpson, a groundman from Local 1925, collapsed and fell face first to the ground. Foreman Jacob Jones and apprentice Ben Geurin were the first to reach Travis, who was having a seizure; they rolled him on his side and made sure they kept his airway open. Ben Geurin ran to the foreman's truck to get the AED as Jerald Jewell and Kynan Monroe started CPR. Kynan got Travis ready to use the AED, cleared everyone and applied the shock. Jerald and Kynan gave three more sets of chest compressions and mouth to mouth, and although Travis started breathing on his own, he could not talk and started to have another seizure. Kynan and Ben rolled him onto his side to keep his airway open and were with him when the ambulance arrived.

The way these brothers reacted together is amazing. While Kynan and Jerald were working on Travis and performing CPR, Jones and Geurin were moving line trucks out of the way so the ambulance would have a clear path. Foreman Jones rode in the ambulance to the hospital with Travis. Local 369 would also like everyone to know that Service Electric Company's commitment to providing each crew with an AED was very important to the outcome of this situation.

Travis Simpson was admitted to the hospital, and doctors determined that Travis had a fibrillation problem with his heart, and he had to have a pacemaker/defibrillator put in. The whole crew went back to the hospital that evening after work and were told by the doctors that their actions saved this young man's life.

At Local 369's monthly membership meeting in July, awards were presented to these brothers who helped to save a life. Well done, brothers.

Gene Holthouser, Bus. Rep.


Regional Director Brent Stubblefield from Service Electric stands with Local 369's journeymen linemen Jerald Jewell and Kynan "Popcorn" Monroe, holding their Life-Saving awards, along with Service Electric General Foreman Randy Criswell. (Not pictured: Fourth-year apprentices Ben Geurin and Tyler McPeak)

Giving Back to the Community

L.U. 401 (c,em,i,ptc,rts&st), RENO, NV — Each spring, our members volunteer with a local nonprofit organization, Keep Truckee Meadows Beautiful (KTMB), whose mission is creating a more sustainable and beautiful region through waste reduction, education and active community involvement. In April and May alone, our members' contributions totaled more than 522 volunteer-hours working on projects at regional parks within our community.

In 2018, when our members first partnered with KTMB, the tasks were primarily using trash pickers to collect litter. After witnessing the hard-working nature and abilities of our membership, KTMB started choosing more labor-intensive tasks that had been neglected due to the difficulty of the work. This year, our members, armed with picks, shovels and rakes, performed tasks such as trail-erosion maintenance, invasive weed removal and spreading mulch. A ranger with the Regional Park Department said, "It is so wonderful to see a well-organized group accomplish so much work, so quickly."

A big thanks goes to our Women's Committee for providing the necessities and coordinating the help.

Brian Osborn, Treas.


Local 401 members participated in a KTMB event to benefit the Bartley Ranch Regional Park in Washoe County, NV: Brian Osborn, Dan Councilman, Theresa Straight, Harrison Mixer, Cesar Bernal, Charles Boolin, Chris Cave, Austin Coughlin, Clint Dunham, Cody Ehlers, Derek Espinoza, Todd Giordano, Scott Hertzler, Greg Horne, Erik Lestrud, Sherry MacDonald, Francisco Macias and Ian Mattice.

Local 441 Hosts Roundtable Event

L.U. 441 (as,i&rts), SANTA ANA, CA — It's always a pleasure to have a seat at the table to discuss our local workforce with elected representatives. We were proud to host a double roundtable event at the OC Electrical Training Institute in Santa Ana on Sept. 1. After an initial building trades discussion with Rep. Katie Porter, Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm joined to discuss investment into clean energy, and how our county — and more importantly, our local skilled and trained workforce — fits into those plans. Also in attendance were Sen. Dave Min, Orange County Supervisor Katrina Foley, Santa Ana Councilmember David Penaloza and Santa Ana Mayor Vicente Sarmiento. Following the roundtable discussion, Business Manager Neal Lauzon and OC ETI Training Director Jerry Thomas accompanied Secretary Granholm, Rep. Porter, et al. on a tour of our new state-of-the-art apprentice training facility.

Our local is fortunate to have support on so many levels, which is a testament to the skilled men and women of Local 441 and the value they bring to Orange County.

Jaime Colclasure, P.S.


Local 441 hosted a double-roundtable event at the OC Electrical Training Institute in Santa Ana on Sept. 1 with U.S. Rep. Katie Porter and Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm.

Local 481 Members Pass the Torch

L.U. 481 (ees,em,i,mt,rts,s&spa), INDIANAPOLIS, IN — As 2022 ends, our local would like to recognize our members who have decided to call it a career and allow the next generation to carry the torch.

John Griffin, a member for more than 41 years, served many roles on behalf of Local 481. The last of his tenure was serving as the President/Executive Director of the Central Indiana Building Trades, where he represented 18 construction unions. Thanks to John's efforts, Local 481 members benefited from manhour increases not seen before, continuing year after year.

Jim Patterson, a member for more than 43 years, also served many roles on behalf of Local 481 members, from business representative to his most recent endeavor as the apprenticeship director for more than 17 years. Through his leadership and dedication, JATC Indianapolis has remained on the cutting edge of training and education. As Jim brought in new ideas and instructors along the way, the apprenticeship continued to grow under his leadership.

Lastly, former Sixth District International Vice President David Ruhmkorff served the members of Local 481 for more than 44 years. David served on multiple levels along the way, as a business representative and business manager and then as IVP, always putting the IBEW first. Words cannot express the gratitude we have for David and what he has done for all of the IBEW. Thank you for leading by example and always being engaged with the membership!

Congratulations to all on your retirements, and thank you for your dedication to the IBEW!

Blake A. Andrews, Bus. Rep./Treas.

Harris, Walsh Visit Local 553 JATC

L.U. 553 (i,lctt,mt,o&ws), RALEIGH, NC — March 2 proved to be a momentous day for the JATC of our local. Vice President Kamala Harris, along with Labor Secretary Marty Walsh, took the day to visit Durham Technical Community College for the express purpose of touring the IBEW apprenticeship training facilities at the school.

Their visit was intended to highlight the advantages of union apprenticeships for young American workers. While in Durham, they also met with organized labor advocates from across the state, including Local 553 Business Manager Rob Axford and Local 379 RENEW President Melissa Reyes.

"We see the potential for growth in terms of diversity, in terms of inclusion, in terms of America's workforce and our future," said Harris in her remarks to assembled union members from across the building trades. "I met some of those great stars and leaders today who I believe are all part of a new era of the American labor movement."

"We can ensure workers have healthcare, a fair wage, and a voice," said RENEW 553 Committee member Tara Schmitt when introducing the vice president. "We as a nation have learned time and again how best to do that: Unionize."

Aharon Segal, L.U. 553 RENEW Pres.


Labor Secretary Marty Walsh and Vice President Kamala Harris with first-year apprentice Yesenia Hernandez.

Local 601 Hosts 45th Annual Softball Tournament

L.U. 601 (i&rtb), CHAMPAIGN-URBANA, IL — Our local's softball team hosted their 45th annual softball invitational tournament. Locals 134 (Chicago), 145 (Rock Island/Quad Cities), 146 (Decatur), 150 (Waukegan), 176 (Joliet), 193 (Springfield), 197 (Bloomington), 364 (Rockford), 461 (Aurora), 649 (Alton) and 701 (Dupage) all showed up for their chance to forever etch their local on the traveling trophy.

Congratulations to Local 134 of Chicago for winning this year! Thanks to all the teams that came out as well as the members and their families. We hope to see you all next year!

Luther Baker, P.S.


Local 601 recently hosted its annual softball tournament (back row, left to right): Kevin Carroll, Jake Hughes, Dominik Harmon, Mark Lowry, Mike Hagemeyer, Toby Traxler, Dustin Lard, Ryan Munsterman and Rick Mueller; (front row): Dan Wingler, Tyler Tester, Blake Withers, Phillip Cook, Christian Krumwiede and Travis Spencer.

JATC Offers PV Training

L.U. 611 (catv,es,govt,I,lctt,o,spa,t&u), ALBUQUERQUE, NM — The JATC is now offering photovoltaic training at no cost to the members. At the time of this writing, the state is paying for anyone interested in learning PV. I am not sure how much longer this course will be offered for free, but anyone interested can call the JATC at 505-341-4444 for more information and updates.

Anyone who has been following local sports news has heard the names Luke and Evan Wysong, who are the sons of Local 611 member Adam Wysong. Luke, a sophomore, is an all-star slot receiver for the University of New Mexico Lobos football team; Evan, a senior, is the all-star starting quarterback for Cleveland Storm High School in Rio Rancho. The two brothers were going to have their first opportunity to play on the same team when Luke was a senior and Evan a sophomore at Cleveland, but all high school sports were brought to a halt during the pandemic. Luke and Evan will finally have an opportunity to play together since Evan has agreed to play for UNM next season. Adam Wysong was a college football player, and his wife Beth was a college volleyball player, so sports definitely runs in the family.

This year's Labor Day picnic was a huge success! Every year it gets bigger and bigger, and if you have not attended one of these events, be sure and mark your calendar for next year. It is really fun, with lots of food and games for the kids, and this year's event was attended by the governor.

Don't forget that our union meetings are on the third Saturday of the month. I would like to encourage our apprentices to attend as often as possible, as the meetings are important and apprentices missed out on a great opportunity at a recent meeting.

On behalf of the local, I would like to send condolences to the family and friends of Larry Garcia and Albert "AJ" Norris.

Darrell J. Blair, P.S.


Local 611's Adam Wysong, with Luke, Evan and Beth, stands proud on the field with his talented family.

Local 639 and Partners Build Housing for Veteran

L.U. 639 (i&rts), SAN LUIS OBISPO, CA — On Sat., July 23, members of our local, UA 403 and the Southwest Carpenters 805, partnered with Operation WEBS (Women Empowered Build Strong) to build a tiny home at the California Mid-State Fair. The tiny home will be used as temporary housing for a homeless woman veteran in our community.

Thank you to our distinguished guest speakers House Rep. Salud Carbajal, County Board of Supervisors Dawn Ortiz-Legg and John Peschong, County Superintendent of Schools Dr. James Brescia and Sandy Blair from Operation WEBS. They spoke on the importance of the Building Trades apprenticeship programs and the path to the middle class through jobs with benefits and pensions.

A special shout out goes to Local 639 members for their hard work: Daniel Boyd, Darian Cantrel, President Joe Fitzer, Executive Board Officer Bill Gerber, Organizer Sean Perry, Business Manager Mark Simonin and Loyd Taylor (of Local 413).

Kurt McClave, P.S.


U.S. Rep. Salud Carbajal (center) and other guest speakers at the California Mid-State Fair.

Local 649 Updates

L.U. 649 (i,lctt,mt&o), ALTON, IL — The Greater Madison County Federation of Labor parade was a success, with big local membership turnout. Brothers and sisters who were unable to attend past parades made it to this year's parade and the festivities thereafter.

Brother Ryan Mouser accepted the position as Local 649 organizer, quickly acclimating to the important role he will take for the local. Alan will focus solely on assistant business agent duties now and be of greater assistance to Terry.

In other Local 649 news:

Signatory contractor J.F. Electric will begin commissioning work on the tornado- damaged Amazon warehouse after months of sitting idle. Our local's journeymen wiremen are getting certified for upcoming Electrical Vehicle Infrastructure Training Program (EVITP) projects due to President Biden's infrastructure bill. We are manning up for Phillips 66 Refinery fall turnaround. Ameren Illinois contract negotiations have been completed after several voting sessions. The Wieland Group (formerly known as Olin) contract negotiations have begun. A $700 million lock and dam project approved by President Biden will construct a 1,200-foot lock chamber; project design is 75% complete, with a projected start date in 2024. Welcome back to work from your recovery, Brothers Tim Blasa and Doug Messinger.

Let there be "Strength In Unity."

Terry Wilhite, P.S.

Progress in Columbus

L.U. 683 (i&ptc), COLUMBUS, OH — The story remains the same in our jurisdiction, with a continuing outstanding work outlook; at the time of this writing, calls are coming in on a daily basis. The Hilton Columbus Downtown is in the final push with an abundance of overtime being worked to finish it. Data center work continues to gear up and the utility-scale solar work is on its way as well. The Ohio State University medical facility tower continues growing into the sky, topping out at 26 stories, and it will continue to drive calls for manpower. Our traveling brothers and sisters are critical in filling the needs of the work load.

Local 683 was the host local for the Fourth District Progress Meeting in July. It was a nice return to normalcy, meeting in person again and seeing our brothers and sisters from across the district. We would like to thank International Vice President Gina Cooper for choosing Columbus as well as all of the speakers in attendance and those that helped with the event. We hope everyone in attendance had a great time and enjoyed their stay.

Local 683 would like to wish everyone a safe and happy upcoming holiday season!

Mike Morey, Pres.

Summer Solidarity

L.U. 697 (c,es,I,mt&se), GARY/HAMMOND, IN — We are in the midst of an upswing of projects in our jurisdiction. Many projects in the industrial, commercial and residential markets have kept us busy all year. We, like so many other locals, look forward to a robust finish to the year.

Our members and their families were able to enjoy the end of the summer with a series of Local 697 events. The participation in the Lowell Labor Day parade was once again strong, with close to 300 members and families in total. We held our annual picnic at the Lake County Fairgrounds, which is always a fun time. At the beginning of October, our annual awards night was held at Avalon Manor. It is always nice to see our members of all ages and years of service come together to be recognized for their time committed to our organization. Lastly, we held our fall blood drive just a few weeks ago.

Please continue to work safely as we approach the holiday season!

Joree Richards, B.M.

Organizer Honored with 'Above and Beyond' Award

L.U. 1547 (c,em,i,lctt,o,ptc,t&u), ANCHORAGE, AK — Congratulations to Organizer Paul Robarge on receiving the IBEW Ninth District's "Above and Beyond" award in recognition of his extraordinary commitment to organizing, thereby furthering the purposes of the IBEW. The accompanying picture shows Brother Robarge with Membership Development Rep. Greg Boyd, Ninth District International Vice President John O'Rourke and Business Manager Marcie Obremski. Brothers O'Rourke and Boyd were here in Alaska to assist with our organizing blitz in Anchorage.

Melinda Taylor, Comm. Dir.


Organizer Paul Robarge holds his "Above and Beyond" award alongside (from left) Greg Boyd, John O'Rourke and Marcie Obremski.

Do Nonunion Workers Pay Dues?

L.U. 1579 (i&o), AUGUSTA, GA — When we pay dues and assessments, we get something out of it: We get a fair wage with benefits and representation that give us a quality of life we could not have as nonunion electrical workers.

Inside construction locals usually have fringes paid above and beyond their wages that cover health insurance and pension benefits. If the contractor pays $20 for every hour you work and you work 40 hours per week, you are getting $3,200 a month in benefits. In the nonunion world, workers do not get benefits like this. While they usually see a decent wage on the check, any additional benefits they need will come from that wage. In other words, a nonunion electrical worker pays about $3,200 a month to be nonunion. Think about that!

Our future in Local 1579 and the IBEW is very bright. Always take pride in what you do as you represent the IBEW every day. Always have good attendance at work and do the very best that you can.

Until next time, God bless!

Will Salters, B.M./F.S.