Spring/Summer 2021 Council Newsletter
Hello Brothers and Sisters!

It is my pleasure to welcome you to the latest edition of our Council's newsletter. It is full of news and information that I am confident you will find informative and helpful, or at least interesting!
I am happy to report that the Council is in an excellent position to not only return to - but exceed - our operations from pre-COVID days.

Our health and pension funds are strong and growing. Trustees who sit on these boards work hard to keep our members' future safe and prosperous.

Like the rest of the UBC, membership numbers by the end of 2020 were down (ours by 500), coming in at 6,914. But, as of June 18, 2021, our membership is above 2020's mark, coming in at 7,528!

Our man-hours last year also took a hit, finishing 2020 at 4.25 million, down 15% from 2019. But, in just the first four months of 2021, we have logged 1.4 million hours, putting us on a pace to reach about 5.6 million hours this year - more than any of our previous 5 years!

The trade show industry is back and that means plenty of work in key exhibiting hot spots like Houston and New Orleans. The solar industry is also steadily and quickly growing. We are getting repeat business from happy contractors, work is plentiful, and new recruits are getting top-notch training and then remaining union members as jobs conclude.
ITC Re-opening with Strict COVID Vaccine Specifications
As you probably heard, the International Training Center is re-opening and will be done in stages to maintain safe conditions. The ITC is requiring anyone who enters their doors to have a full vaccination. This decision has caused some debate, so our General President, Doug McCarron held a webinar where he took member questions about the rule. You can access that webinar by clicking here.
In closing, I encourage you to become an active Union member. Use this newsletter as your guide to opportunities to better your skills, your leadership talents, and your Union citizenship. We have thousands of talented men and women in our Council. Your involvement will help us keep this positive momentum going.

Yours in solidarity,
Jason B. Engels, EST

Growing Our Marketshare Puts Members to Work
Council Goals Set Our Path
Here are the five goals that we as a Council are striving to accomplish by the close of 2022 to increase market share. You will see reminders of these goals in Union Halls and Training Centers. Please ask your Council Representative if you have any questions.
Answering the Call for Higher Productivity
Carpenters Present Customized Education Session for The Beck Group

Answering the needs of our partners is a top priority for the Central South Carpenters.

So, when The Beck Group – a partner with the United Brotherhood of Carpenters for many years – identified an opportunity to keep productivity at a high level for healthcare construction in occupied facilities, they turned to the Central South Carpenters for support. Read the whole story.
Skill and Training Capabilities Displayed to The Lemoine Company
The leadership of The Lemoine Company got a firsthand look at the capabilities a Central South carpenter brings to a job site when they toured our Metairie, Louisiana training center.

Based in Louisiana, The Lemoine Company is one of the most respected full-service general contracting and construction management firms in the Southeastern United States. Lemoine constructs and manages projects of some of the most complex commercial, education, healthcare, public and industrial landmarks in the Gulf Region.
Carpenters, Contractor, & Customer Team for Innovative Scaffold Training in Texas

Great things happen when we collaborate with our partners for the betterment of the Texas construction industry.

Recently, leaders from signatory contractor Day & Zimmerman and the South Texas Project (STP) Nuclear Power Plant Project visited the Houston Training Center to discuss a project involving scaffold training in preparation for the 2021 outage season. Learn more.
Oklahoma Contractor Benefits from Custom Scaffold Training

Carpenters employed by Williams Construction Company got some great skill-enhancement scaffold training at our Tulsa Training Center.

Many thanks to Chris Strychalski, Mario Valdez, John Ellis, John Embry, Tommie Peace, and Aaron Deavers for staying on top of their scaffolding skills so that Williams Construction Company remains highly productive on job sites. Well done, brothers!
Austin Foreman Meetings Hone Jobsite Leadership Skills

Over the last several months, a large amount of interior systems foremen from Austin Local 1266 have taken advantage of a unique opportunity to hone their leadership skills. The Local established these monthly foremen meetings to cover a range of topics that focus on things like leadership styles, communication skills, how to set up a job for success through organization and planning, how to motivate workers, and many other topics.

The goal: Create better leaders in our ranks who recognize the value of their employees, and their role in setting up the job site and the crew for success.

The idea for these meetings was shared by our neighbor, the Southwest Carpenters Regional Council. Current UBC Western District Vice President Randy Thornhill spearheaded these meetings years ago when he was with the SCRC. As Operation Bat Fury grew, DVP Thornhill provided guidance to get the meetings established, and then offered to lead the meetings.

It’s quite an opportunity to be taught by DVP Thornhill and have the chance to interact with this construction veteran and industry leader. In addition to DVP Thornhill, meeting co-leaders have included SCRC President and Chief Operating Officer Pete Rodriguez, On-the-Job trainers from the UBC International Training Center, CSCRC EST Jason Engels, and CSCRC Director of Organizing and Operations,  Craig Wright. Click here for a photo album of these meetings.
Solar Industry Market Share Growth is Red Hot

The South is the perfect environment for Solar farms, and the nation's largest companies are relying more and more on union carpenters to get the panels in place quickly, accurately, and safely. Our work is mostly in Texas, but more work is being pursued in other parts of our jurisdiction. Here's a sampling of our latest solar wins...
Industrial Council Builds on Momentum from Multiple Wins

Our industrial program is organizing and recruiting heavily, as well as successfully representing workers across the Central South's five-state region. Here are a few of the latest highlights...
Training: The Driving Force Behind ALL Growth
New Director for the Arkansas-Oklahoma Training Program

The Arkansas Oklahoma Carpenter Apprenticeship and Training Trust Fund welcomes its new Director, Bryan Spradley! Bryan is a 16-year union carpenter and a member of Local 329 in Oklahoma City, who first started his instructor career in 2013.

“It’s something I’ve always enjoyed. When I was in the field, I enjoyed working with apprentices and took pride in teaching them,” he said. 

Bryan has taught everything from interior systems, floor covering, concrete, and blueprints, to aerial lift, forklift, and OSHA courses. He also is active with Skills USA and was asked recently to judge the Oklahoma competition. He is on the advisory board for the Oklahoma Department of Career and Technical Education, where he introduced the UBC’s Career Connections program.

“I want to take our Training Program to the next level and grow apprenticeship so that we consistently place the best carpenters and millwrights in Arkansas and Oklahoma,” he said. “I plan to introduce more technology and make learning easier and more engaging.

A New Training Center is in the Works in Russellville, Arkansas

Construction of a brand new carpenter and millwright training center is underway in Russellville, Arkansas! With square footage between 20,000 and 30,000, that’s two-to-three times the space of the existing facility.
Arlington Training Facility Gets an Upgrade, Inside and Out

The Arlington Training Center is well on its way to a first-class upgrade to its facility, both inside and outside. The structure, which provides both training space and offices throughout its 35,000 square-foot area, is getting $800,000 worth of exterior upgrades and new training equipment.

"The Arlington Training Center is a very nice building. It has lots of space for training and it has wooden support beams – the same as the UBC training facility in Las Vegas. It just needs an upgrade and more curb appeal, because it’s a little dated,” said Paul Jones, executive director of the Gulf Coast Carpenters & Millwrights Training Trust Fund.

“The biggest benefit from this renovation project is to prepare space for additional training opportunities. The newly renovated facility will also serve us very well when explaining our value to contractors and potential industry partners.” 
Exterior renovations include:
  • Removing wings and earthen berms
  • Replacing wood in the front of the building
  • Addressing a complex drainage system to divert runoff away from the building
  • New signage, new paint job, and new landscaping

New equipment includes:
  • An Infection Control Risk Assessment (ICRA) mockup for hands-on training for projects in occupied health care facilities
  • A conveyor prop (pictured) for training on floor conveyor, power, and free monorail systems used in many manufacturing processes such as automotive and food and beverage
  • A cleanroom fabrication area for instruction in building cleanrooms - specialized, dust- and contaminant-free environments for data chip manufacturing and a variety of industries

The center will also feature two mechatronics/robot stations, which will provide pre-requisite training for the UBC mechatronics course. “The new conveyor and robot equipment will help because a lot of our members work at the GM plant right down the road,” Jones said.

Renovations are expected to be completed by the end of the year.
Training Briefs...

  • Austin Training Partnership Earns a Feature News Article - Many thanks to the Austin Public Broadcasting System for its excellent article about a Union program that’s getting Austin residents into a rewarding career as a professional carpenter! Check it out.

  • Making Great Career Connections - More than a dozen school districts in Louisiana are using the online curriculum of the UBC's Career Connections program. In Texas, more schools are joining the program, including all of the construction classes in the Amarillo ISD system. Learn more at UBCGulfCoastTraining.org/career-connections/.

  • Veterans Trade Helmets for Hardhats - The Carpenters Veterans Program at Fort Hood, Texas is well underway. Members of the Army who are within six months of exiting can receive free carpenter training. Once completing the work, the Veterans will be offered direct entry into any of our Apprenticeship Programs with credit for the completed classes.

  • Prepping for the Ultimate Safety Scenario - The Arlington staff is working with the local fire department to teach fire rescue using the union's building and equipment. The idea is that if our members need to be rescued at the GM plant or elsewhere, the fire department will be familiar with our people, tools, equipment, and surroundings, such as scaffolding and steel structures.
Stay Trained. Stay Employable.

There is no shortcut to being the best carpenter you can be. It all begins with training.

We have the classes, facilities, staff and resources - all supported by the UBC's $250 million annual training program - to help you be the best you can be. And when you're at the top of your game, you are in-demand on the job site.

Political Report: Protecting Our Jobs at the Polls
President Biden Speaks on
the Importance of Unions

This is a short video of President Biden's thoughts about workers in Alabama – and all across America – about the importance of Unions in their workplace.

Union Leader Appointed as U.S. Department of Labor Secretary

It’s been decades since a union member was appointed to run the United States Labor Department, but Marty Walsh put an end to that streak. The Laborers Union member and former Boston Mayor is already working to ensure our job sites are safe, our pay is fair and our hard work is respected. Learn more about him.
Tax Fraud: Let's Stop It & Protect Our Work!
Council Webinar Shines Spotlight on Damaging Effects of Construction Tax Fraud

It took a little more than an hour to illustrate to hundreds of people why construction Tax Fraud is so damaging to our society, and how criminals are getting away with it.

The Central South Carpenters hosted a webinar as part of the UBC's national Tax Fraud Days of Action, 2021 campaign.

"We believe this webinar served to ignite positive action by industry leaders, policymakers, and law enforcement to significantly curb and even eliminate this costly epidemic," said Central South's Executive Secretary-Treasurer, Jason Engels, who moderated the event.
Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards (pictured, on the left, with EST Engles shown on the right) kicked off a great group of speakers: Ava Dejoie, Executive Director of the Louisiana Workforce Commission; Jackie Wood, Director of the Public Integrity & Criminal Prosecution Division, Travis County District Attorney's Office; Ann Kitchen, Austin City Councilwoman, District 5; and Victoria Rodriguez and Grace Nicholas, Premium Fraud Unit officials, Texas Mutual Insurance.

"Our speakers were simply excellent," Engels said. "We were able to pack an enormous amount of information into an hour. We expect for this conversation to continue."

The session also featured interviews with a former labor broker, two victims of tax fraud, and a statistical review of the monetary and humanitarian damages construction Tax Fraud inflicts upon all of us, every day. Just two examples of success in fighting Tax Fraud is shown, below.

Here's a recording of the webinar: https://youtu.be/ix6CqJxjb9Q

Members: The Heartbeat of our Union
Whether it's securing work, protecting members from a deadly virus, or supporting them as they progress along their career path, the Central South Carpenters is and will always be focused on serving the members as our top priority.
Members On the Jobsite
Stats from Safe Jobsites
Congratulations to our brothers and sisters who are turning in great interior systems work - very safely - for contractors in Austin, Texas. We are proud to announce that this group logged 221,239 labor hours in 2020 with no lost time or incidents reported. And, in just the first two months of 2021, these same Union carpenters have already logged 42,122 labor hours again with no lost time or incidents reported. Well done, everyone! Learn more about our approach to safety.
Members Helping Members
Carpenters Team with Millwrights to Honor Fallen Soldiers from Arkansas

Congratulations to the many Central South Carpenter and Southern States Millwright members who volunteered their time to create a stunning tribute to fallen soldiers at the Veterans Memorial Park in Russellville, Arkansas.

The effort was coordinated by the Arkansas Oklahoma Carpenters Apprenticeship Training Trust Fund. Carpenters installed about 100 individually named plaques to line the sidewalks of the park.

Apprentices Help Memory Care Patients See Their Families
What better way to demonstrate the spirit of community than to connect those living in memory care facilities with their loved ones? That’s exactly what apprentices in Austin, Texas did when they built a "Visitation Station" that enabled family and their loved ones to visit as closely as possible. Read more about this effort.
Sisters-in-the-Brotherhood Program Serves Fellow Members

The overriding goal of the Council's SIB program is to help member retention, recruitment, member services, and community service. As membership in the SIB program grows, more Local chapters are established.
In recent months, SIBs from Local 2086 in Taylorsville, Mississippi exhibited at a local Health Fair in a recruiting effort, while SIBs across the Council assembled new hire packets for all members.

SIB members of Local 2445 in Columbus, Mississippi presented gift cards to members who were laid-off due to COVID 19.

Samantha Beville, SIB Director for Local 2346 in Leola, Arkansas is shown here presenting a fellow member with expenses assistance after he was in auto accident.

Members On the Move
Local 1846 & Council Leader Retires

John Edwards, a long-time leader both on the job site and in the Union hall, has retired after 47 years of service. From the time he joined in 1973 through his final day of work, John has played vital roles for Local 1846 and the Central South Carpenters Regional Council in a variety of leadership positions such as delegate, officer, president of both 1846 and the Regional Council, and as a council representative. Thanks for everything, John. We wish you a safe, happy retirement!
Welcome New Staff!
We have strengthened our staff to help in two hot-spot areas. Three new hires - Enrique Garza, Derrick Vasta, and Steven Zavala - are assigned to Austin Local 1266. Marcus McLaurin is assigned to help the industrial program. We look forward to great things from these four fine gentlemen and dedicated Union members!
CSCRC SIB Coordinator Joins International SIB Committee

Congratulations to the Central South Sisters-in-the Brotherhood Coordinator, Shanta Prude, on being named to the UBC's International SIB Committee.

Shanta is a dynamic council representative, a third-generation Union carpenter, and an 11-year member from Local 3094 in Florien, Louisiana. UBC General President Doug McCarron named Shanta to the International SIB Committee earlier this year to represent the Southern District.

“I have seen, firsthand, what the Union has accomplished for the working person, from fair wages to health codes and safer working environments,” Shanta said. “I hope to use my role as a Union Representative to bring the members closer together and to help them see that the Union is only as strong as its members are. Members sometimes do not see the Union as "their" Union. My goal is to help them see that not only do they belong to a Local Union but that also their Union belongs to them.”

Interested in joining the SIB program? Email Shanta at sprude@cscouncil.net.
Members Recruiting Members
Carpenters Wanted!

From Baton Rouge to El Paso, increased work opportunities means we have openings for professional carpenters. If you know someone would be a good addition to our union, tell them to visit this website:

We Remember Our Fallen
Please keep the families in your prayers for those members whom we've lost from August 1 to April 1...

Local 14: John Gilbert (48), Robert Daehn (61), Charles Staudt (63)
Local 71: Lawrence Komp (72)
Local 329: Gerald Perry (40), Jerry Bailey (52)
Local 429: Ibrahim Johnson (1 month), M. Sampson (79), David Lawson (10), William Wilson (61)
Local 551: John Baccinelli (65), George Hayes (23), C. Pieternelle (44), Onnie Collins (49), Steven Roesch (24)
Local 665: Ronald Collins (34)
Local 690: Charles Thomason (55); Darrell Wright (61)
Local 943: Cecil Allison (23)
Local 1098: Danny Allen (28), James Braud (56), Jerry Daniel (46), Ernest McIntyre (67), Curtis Mitchel (51), Leon Nichols (18); Robert Cox (44), Charles Fenn (60), Carl Hooks (47), Arlie Jerome (56), Charlie Lemonte (59), Bobby McKey (63)
Local 1266: James Garrett (0), Chriss Sylvester (63), Dennis Taylor (23)
Local 1846: Henry Bonomo, Jr. (47), Charles Cardaronella (13), Jason Francis (15), George Herrmann (10), Clayton Juan (16), Hermon Lambert (10), Edward McAllef (55), Kenneth Rushing, Sr. (5), Eugene Short (55), Troy Weixel (12), Steve Alvarez (46), Eduardo Anderson (12), David Dykes (33), Terry Ebarb (8), Jose Figueroa (1), Frank Hodges (29), Kerry O’Neill (8), Dewey Sonier (43)
Know Where to Go
Did you know there is a FOR MEMBERS section on our website dedicated to help brothers and sisters, or their families, get the resources he or she needs quickly? Know where to go - use the For Members section often for info on...
Did you know you can pay your dues online? It's fast and secure! You can access the online dues system by clicking here, or through the Council's mobile app. Don't have the app? Simply go to your mobile device's app store and search "CS Carpenters". It's that easy!

You can also access the online dues system via your Local's website, or, you can find the online dues system on your Local's page on the Council website.

Questions? Contact your Local Representative. Find that information, here.
Know How to Get Help
Sometimes life’s circumstances seem extremely overwhelming. There is help for you. Don’t try to “fix it” on your own. We tell our contractors to turn to the professionals for their carpentry needs, right? Likewise, turn to a professional to help you through this. Your life is worth it. Learn More. Click here.
Know Where to Get Answers
We now operate a virtual "Ask-the-Council" program, where you can simply text your question and we will get an answer to you as soon as possible.

Text the word QUESTION to 844-682-7272 (844-68-CSCRC) to get started. Don't want to text? You can always reply to this newsletter with your question. But if you do, include your Name and Local Number so we can route you to the proper person to help you.

Know How to Stay in the Loop
Join Our Texting Program
Follow Us on Social Media
Get The Mobile App!

Simply go to your mobile device's app store and search "CS Carpenters" and click "download". The app allows you to pay dues online, stay current with Council news, contact Council staff quickly, and much more.

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