Rita Cameron Wedding, Ph.D. is a professor of Women’s Studies and Ethnic Studies at Sacramento State University (California). Dr. Cameron Wedding’s curriculum Implicit Bias: Impact on Decision-Making, has been used to train judges, public defenders, practitioners in child welfare, juvenile justice, law enforcement and education in jurisdictions throughout the country since 2005. As a faculty for the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (NCJFCJ), she has trained judges at court improvement initiatives in over 40 states. In 2010 Dr. Cameron Wedding was featured in the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention’s (OJJDP) website which showcased her work for “content, expertise and platform excellence.” In 2013 in response to the U.S. Department of Justice’s 3-year investigation and findings of civil rights violations, Dr. Cameron Wedding led a training team of 5 experts to provide implicit bias training to the entire Shelby County Juvenile Court.Read More
Debbie Page is an internationally recognized entrepreneur, business coach and advocate for women’s economic independence and is recognized as the leading authority on cash flow for women in business.
For over two decades Debbie has worked with women and money and has acquired, scaled and sold two businesses of her own. It is safe to say, that whatever high or low you are experiencing in your business, she's been there and knows the way through.
When not coaching her clients from Sweden to Singapore and across North America, Debbie is a philanthropist, a feminist and a decent Cribbage player. She loves a good glass of wine, great conversation and studying the latest findings and applications in the fields of cognitive psychology and business strategy.
Debbie is the proud pet parent to Mr. Harley Hounderton, her 10-year-old Labrador Retriever and doggy love of her life.
Director, NW Center of Excellence for Marine Manufacturing & Technology
Ann Avary has served as Director of the NW Center of Excellence for Marine Manufacturing & Technology since November 2006. During that time, she has conducted four statewide workforce studies with Washington State University and has been involved with groups in support of the high demand maritime workforce of Washington State. She also serves as Chair for the Marine League of Schools, a national consortium of marine technology education providers. Avary has been directly involved in embedding standards based curriculum in the marine technology programs in Washington State. As Principal Investigator for the Composites Recycling Technician Education Program, she is taking a leadership role in introducing sustainability and sustainable technologies to community and technical college programs. When not working, Ann can be found spending time with her family and pursuing amateur cartography and very amateur gardening.
Director, Construction Center of Excellence
As director of the Construction Center of Excellence, Shana links industry to the community college system in Washington State for the purpose of coordinating education and training efforts to build a competitive workforce in a global economy. With four priorities: Economic Development, Industry Sector Strategy, Workforce Supply and Demand, and Education, Innovation and Efficiency, the Center is positioned to sustain Washington’s competitive advantage through statewide leadership.Read More
Executive Director, Oregon Tradeswomen, Inc.
Connie Ashbrook is the Executive Director of Oregon Tradeswomen, Inc., a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting success for women in the trades through education, leadership and mentoring. She founded OTI in 1989 and served the organization as a volunteer until coming on staff in 1996.
Before her time with OTI, Ashbrook worked in the trades for seventeen years as a dump truck driver, carpenter apprentice and elevator constructor. She was the first woman in Oregon to become licensed as an elevator mechanic.
Ashbrook served on the Oregon State Apprenticeship and Training Council for nine years, and is on the Federal Advisory Committee on Registered Apprenticeship. She is passionate about working to achieve gender, racial, economic and environmental justice.
Under her leadership, thousands of diverse women and girls have gained information about careers in the building, construction, mechanical, manufacturing and utility trades, and hundreds of women have moved into these high-wage, high-skilled trades careers.
President and Alternative Energy Director, I.B.E.W. Local 46
Sean Bagsby currently serves as the President and Alternative Energy Director for the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Local 46, in Kent Washington. His duties include administration of seven (7) Collective Bargaining Agreements that cover various Units of Electrical Workers across several counties in Washington, as well as workforce and electrical contractor development. He has served as a Labor Trustee for the Puget Sound Electrical Joint Apprenticeship and Training Trust, located in Renton Washington since 2008.
Mr. Bagsby participates on the Technical Advisory Committees for Cascadia Community College, and the Shoreline Community College; Zero Energy Technology Program. He served on the Technical Advisory Board for the Seattle Vocational Institute Pre-Apprenticeship and Construction Training Program from 2009 – February 2015, and in 2010 was elected Chairman. He served as Chairman until 2015. In December 2015, Mr. Bagsby became Chairman of the Technical Advisory Board for the new Pre-Apprenticeship Construction Education (PACE) program with the Washington State Building and Construction Trades Council.Read More
Leilanna Barrientes is a graduate of apprenticeship program at ANEW (Apprenticeship and Nontraditional Employment for Women). She has experience as a union laborer and currently works as a union operating engineer Local 302.
Barrientes volunteers with her union and ANEW to help mentor and guide women who may be entering or looking to join the trades. She has two sons and enjoys giving back to her community through outreach programs that help guide young women.
Hannah Curtis is a Research Coordinator at the University of Washington Department of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences. She received an MPH in Health Behavior and Health Education from the University of Michigan School of Public Health. Hannah has always been passionate about improving women’s health and safety.
After working in several administrative and legal positions where she was not inspired by the work, a friend told Hannah about public health. It was the perfect fit and allowed Hannah to find meaningful work while broadening her understanding of the structural barriers to women’s economic advancement. Her past work focused on researching public policy effects on the health of homeless families, advocating for reproductive justice, and creating programs to address youth sexual vulnerability.Read More
Executive Director, Apprenticeship & Non-Traditional Employment for Women (ANEW)
Karen Dove's role as executive director is to plan and execute the overall strategic and operational responsibility for ANEW’s staff, programs, expansion, and execution of its mission. Dove is a dedicated servant leader and has a passion for social justice issues. She is committed to developing collaborative partnerships resulting in systemic change. Throughout her career she has utilized her entrepreneurial spirit and skills to create and implement new and innovative programs aimed at moving people toward family wage jobs. Dove is also a published author and when not serving her community, likes to spend time on the beach. She counts her three children as her proudest accomplishments.Read More
1981: Began piledriver apprenticeship
Worked on the West Seattle bridge throughout my apprenticeship. My employer was Peter Kiewit. I switched to the Carpenters union around 1992. I continued to build bridges around the Seattle area. I think that I have helped build about 20 bridges in the area. I worked 18 years for Peter Kiewit. I have worked with a couple of other companies too.
I have been a lead carpenter on many crews as well as a foreman. One of the jobs I am most proud of is the Royal Brougham train station, because my crew was made up of mostly women. We had a femaleoperator, a female carpenter apprentice & 3 female journeyman carpenters on the crew!
2007–2012: Instructor at the King County Carpenters Training Center
2011:Local 30 Union delegate
2012–2013: back out in the field building the pontoons for 520 floating bridge
2013–2014: Instructor at SeaTac Carpenters Training Center
2014: Trustee for Local 30
2014–Current: Carpenter Training Coordinator
Leanne Guier became a pipefitter apprentice in 1997, working in the field until becoming a piping detailer in 2006. In 2010, she was brought into the office to serve as the political director for Local 32.
Additionally, Guier sat on the planning commission for the City of Pacific in 2004 until appointed to City Council in 2009. She was appointed Mayor of Pacific in 2013, and elected in 2015.
Guier serves on various boards and commissions including: State Building Code Council, Seattle Priority Hire, Sound Cities Association Executive Board, Regional Transit Committee, (representing Sound Cities Association), and the Regional Water Quality Control Committee (representing Sound Cities Association).Read More
Apprenticeship Coordinator, Operating Engineers Regional Training Program
Lacey Hall has spent the last seventeen and a half years in the field working with cranes. She has worked in pile driving, drilling, marine construction, and crane rental in Washington and Alaska. She also worked in the dirt sector of the industry for several years.
Hall says, “My experiences and opportunities in union construction made me the person that I am today." She also credits the teachers and operators who helped her learn on the job.
"I plan to pay it forward to the next generation of skilled operating engineers,” she said. Hall feels excited to work with her fellow coordinators. She plans to focus on greater inclusion of women and people of color in construction trade career paths.
President, Sisters in the Building Trades
Melina has been working with Tradeswomen, their causes, issues and solutions for over a decade. She has served as the president of the Sisters in the Building Trades since January of 2006. She very likely holds the record for connecting more tradeswomen across the US, Canada and around the world than any other activist. Though her main focus is tradeswomen in the US, she has been working to involve them in global outreach to tradeswomen around the globe as a way to find, encourage and empower leaders to take on the challenges and long term solutions to change their history.
Christine Jacobson graduated from Lewis and Clark College with a degree in musicology. She then ran away to sea for several years before returning to attend the Northwest School of Wooden Boatbuilding in Port Townsend. Since then she has worked for several different companies in the boat yard there. Christine enjoys the trades and worries that people in general and women in particular are not being encouraged to view them as a viable way of making a living.
Owner, Compass Courses Maritime Training
Julie Keim started her maritime career in 1995 aboard small pax vessels sailing Alaska to Mexico. She is a License Merchant Mariner.
In 2001, she started one of the most well known maritime training schools in the Pacific Northwest, Compass Courses Maritime Training, located in Edmonds. Today they have 26 Coast Guard approved training courses, providing training for many large maritime companies, fishing vessels, research vessels, ferries and many individuals.
Keim is a Seattle Propeller Club Board member and this past summer participated in the Race to Alaska as a member of Team Kraken Up. She demonstrates on a daily basis her passion for safety and licensure training, and loves to fish.
After a successful career in the trades of over 20 years and earning two Red Seal certifications in Motor Winder (Electric Motor Systems Technician) and Electrical, Kelly Kienleitner began teaching for the Electrical Joint Training Committee (EJTC) in 2003.
Kienleitner completed the Master Instructor/Trainer program and three years of Advanced Studies through the IBEW’s National Training Institution (NTI) and is currently the EJTC’s Chief Instructor.
In addition to teaching the EJTC’s Entry Level Trades Training (ELTT) program for 6 years, Kienleitner participates in the EVITP Curriculum Committee and is now a certified EVITP Master Instructor. She also serves as a subject matter expert on other training initiatives including but not limited to PV Installations and the National Advanced Lighting Control Program.
Kienleitner brings her decades of experience as an integral member of the NETCO Blended Learning Committee.
Executive Secretary of the Pierce County Building & Construction Trades Council AFL-CIO
Mark P. Martinez is the “American Dream Coordinator” for 8,000 skilled construction craft workers in Tacoma/Pierce County. He works to ensure safety, equity and fairness on the jobsite; enables hard working tradespeople to retire in dignity; and introduces young people to life-long careers in the construction industry through apprenticeship.Read More
Executive Manager, MidMountain Contractors, Inc.
Originally from Texas, Nancy Munro has lived in Washington since her junior-high school days. Personifying the long-standing family saying of “you can take the Texan out of Texas, but you can’t take the Texas out of a Texan,” Nancy is described by many who’ve worked with her as a tenacious and determined facilitator with clear resolve and fortitude.Read More
Lee Newgent began his career as an apprentice with the Ironworkers Local 86. He has worked as a foreman, general foreman, and superintendent. Newgent has worked at his trade in five different countries including the continent of Antarctica.
Newgent has been active in the disaster response community. He serves as the Labor Co-Chair of the Fire Incident Response Skilled Trades (FIRST) Committee in partnership with the Seattle Fire Department. He was also a volunteer for the Ironworkers at the World Trade Center and other disaster sites.
He is currently the Executive Secretary of the Washington State Building Trades Council. Lee represents 100,000 union craft workers in Washington State.
Newgent is the Chairman of the Washington State Apprenticeship Council. He has been recognized as an industry leader in recruiting and retaining women and people of color.Read More
Melinda Nichols wanted to be a carpenter from the time she was five years old. Nichols attended Seattle Community College in 1972 and entered the carpentry apprenticeship program in 1973.
She applied for over 100 positions before she got her first job. In 1977, she received her journey person's card.
Nichols worked as a carpenter for 11 years before teaching at ANEW (Apprenticeship and Nontraditional Employment for Women) for seven years. Next, she ran Seattle City Light's apprenticeship programs for 8 years.
Nichols was a management member of the Washington State Apprenticeship and Training Council for 22 years. She worked a construction manager and director for 10 years. Nichols has spent the past three years as manager of Apprenticeship for the State of Washington Department of Labor and Industries.