Blue Collar/Black Tie Tradeswomen Awards Gala Sept. 20 at Sheet Metal Workers 36 Grand Hall
Missouri Women in Trades (MoWIT) has announced the recipients of its inaugural Tradeswomen Awards to be presented at the organization’s inaugural Blue Collar/Black Tie Tradeswomen Awards Gala.
The event, celebrating tradeswomen’s achievements and the great strides made by local contractors and unions to support women in the building trades, will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. Friday, Sept. 20 at Sheet Metal Workers Local 36 Grand Hall at 2319 Chouteau Ave. in St. Louis.
TRADESWOMAN OF THE YEAR
Cindy Frank, a journeywoman carpenter with 40 years of experience, elected this year as the first female president of Carpenters Local 945 in Jefferson City will be honored as the 2019 Tradeswoman of the Year.
Frank is the first woman to serve as president of a local union within the St. Louis-Kansas City Carpenters Regional Council, and coordinator for Sisters in the Brotherhood (SIB) of the St. Louis-Kansas City Carpenters Regional Council. She is well known in the St. Louis area for her work helping women enter and succeed in the building trades.
Honorable Mentions: MoWIT’s Executive Board will also recognize two other local tradeswomen with honorable mentions: Kim Sachse, an IBEW Local 1 journeywoman, and Danyeal Crittenden, a Laborers’ Local 42 journeywoman.
“Having so many qualified nominations for Tradeswoman of the Year made it extremely difficult for the board to choose just one winner,” said MoWIT President Beth Barton. “But we felt Kim’s and Danyeal’s qualifications needed to be recognized.”
BREAKING BARRIERS: UNION/APPRENTICESHIP PROGRAM OF THE YEAR
The St. Louis Building & Construction Trades Council’s Building Union Diversity (BUD) program will be recognized for Breaking Barriers as the Union/Apprenticeship Program of the Year.
The BUD program is a partnership between the Building & Construction Trades Council, the Eastern Missouri Laborers District Council and the St. Louis-Kansas City Carpenters Regional Council, along with the St. Louis Agency on Training and Employment (SLATE), Missouri Division of Workforce Development, United Way, Missouri Department of Transportation, Metropolitan Sewer District, AGC of Missouri and the St. Louis County Human Services Workforce Development.
Launched in 2014 as a recruitment tool and pathway to get more women and people of color into the building trades, the program offers pre-apprentices the opportunity to visit local building trade unions to give them basic training and a feel for each of the trades. The percentage of women participating in the program has increased by 31 percent this year.
BREAKING BARRIERS: CONTRACTOR/SUBCONTRACTOR OF THE YEAR
Avid Electric & Communications, an IBEW Local 1 signatory contractor that increased the number of tradeswomen in its workforce by 30 percent in the past year, will be recognized as the Contractor/Subcontractor of the Year.
Avid is a low-voltage communications company offering commercial fire alarm systems, security systems, access control and data networks. The company’s owner, Katie Jimenez, founded Women in Technology, a non-profit organization dedicated to training women in the trades and providing resources for them to become self-sufficient.
In addition to the individual awards, MoWIT will also recognize two groups –– tradeswomen who have entered into an apprenticeship in the last year and tradeswomen who have journeyed out in the last year.
The event will also feature a brief roll call of tradeswomen recognized by their years of service for five, 10, 15, 20, 25 and over 25 years.
GUEST SPEAKER: SEN. GINA WALSH
Missouri Senator Gina Walsh (D-Bellefontaine Neighbors), a champion for women in the building trades and working-class people everywhere, will be the evening’s guest speaker.
A retired member of Heat and Frost Insulators Local 1, Sen. Walsh is the first woman to serve president of the Missouri State Building and Construction Trades Council and was the first woman to go through the Insulators apprenticeship program.
Sheri Gassaway, editor of the Labor Tribune’s Women of Labor section, will serve as master of ceremonies.