Veterans, students benefit from NECA-IBEW community outreach in 2017

Giving back to the Mahoning Valley has been an emphasis for NECA-IBEW Electricians member contractors and IBEW electricians. The association continued its strong presence in 2017 through contributing to scholarship funds and performing community outreach projects, largely to support veterans causes.

The 2017-2018 calendar years mark historical milestones for NECA-IBEW Electricians as the national IBEW and NECA organizations observed 90- and 115-year anniversaries, respectively. These dates were leveraged as marketing themes locally that resulted in a steady stream of digital content throughout the year.

Mike Nemkovich, president, IBEW Local 573, participating in the setup of the electrical service for the Warren Relay for Life event in May. Each year the local donates time and material toward this community project, plus they field a team and raise money selling food to the participants.

“Collectively, we have a unique story to tell as signatory contractors and union electricians, and we leveraged our digital platforms effectively to share how active we are with charitable causes in the communities where we live and do business,” said Jack Savage, executive director, Mahoning Valley NECA.

Among the group’s community interests were initiatives that supported education and veterans. 

·        The first Mahoning Valley LMCC Scholarship through the Youngstown State University Foundation was awarded to Joshua McGoogan, a mechanical engineering major at YSU.

·        Looking to the future labor needs within the building trades, member contractor VEC, Inc. and the Warren Electrical JATC partnered on a pre-apprenticeship program through Trumbull Career and Technical Center to interest more high school students in careers in the electrical trade. TCTC became just the seventh school in Ohio with a pre-apprenticeship program of this criteria.

·        A $5,000 donation to the YSU Foundation helped establish a fund earmarked for the unique needs of veteran students.

·        In September, NECA-IBEW partnered with YSU to co-sponsor its first annual football jersey auction. Eighty military-themed, game-worn jerseys were auctioned off to help benefit student veteran scholarships at the university.

“We’ve had back-to-back strong years in terms of man-hours worked, and that’s really what allows us to give back at the levels we do,” said Jim Burgham, business manager, IBEW Local 64. “It’s a testament to our members’ dedication to their craft that we’re able to secure major projects and perform the work, and in the end, the community also benefits.”

The group expects strong demand across the board among residential, commercial and industrial projects to continue; driven largely by new construction, LED retrofits and electrical service work.

“With our highly trained and available workforce, we’re strongly positioned to go after and secure virtually any type or scope of project out there,” said Jack Morse, business manager, IBEW Local 573.

NECA-IBEW Electricians is an association of IBEW union locals in Warren and Youngstown, and signatory Mahoning Valley electrical contractors. Click here for a list of member contractors.