The Electrical Worker online
November 2023

My IBEW Story
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Noah Guerrero, business owner
Oklahoma City Local 1141

"When I was in high school, we had a neighbor who was an IBEW member, and he always had other members over at his house. I saw firsthand the community that came with IBEW membership. He was a great role model, and he influenced both me and my brother to become electricians.

During this time, my brother, who served in the Army, told me that he had applied for and been accepted to the IBEW apprenticeship program. He said he enjoyed the training and that it resulted in pretty good pay for an 18-year-old. I really looked up to my brother, so I took him at his word and went to Local 1141's hall and filled out my application for apprenticeship.

Since then, I have prospered: I entered the apprenticeship at 18, had my journeyman's license by 24, worked as an inside wireman in the field on many projects — hospitals, wind farms, federal projects on Tinker Air Force Base, various commercial and industrial jobs — and got my contractor's license at 34. I have a union electrical shop, and we employ about 30 inside journeyman wiremen. My company is now six years old. There have been challenges, and we all have to learn along the way. I love that my work always gives me the opportunity to learn. You can grow as much or as little as you like, but your work provides many opportunities to grow as a person.

The IBEW has given me so much to be thankful for, and my family and I have benefited greatly from joining the best electrical union around. I grew up in a single-wide trailer in the middle of the woods that had holes in the roof and the floor. We were very poor and never knew any better as kids. As an adult looking back, I see how lucky we were to have made it to where we are now. We never had insurance growing up and knew nothing of a 401(k). Now I have a great retirement and insurance, and I was trained by some great journeymen in the trade.

While I've been told I have a good story, it's important to remember that we can all do this. I am living proof that it can be done. It's not always easy, and I don't have all of the answers all the time, but I've surrounded myself with a great team that has been with me a long time, and we have each other's backs. Together we will continue to do great things and employ more brothers and sisters with the team we have assembled. I love this trade. I love to see employees grow and learn, and I love to see them happy. Thank you to the IBEW for everything you've done for me!"