ST. LOUIS – IBEW Local 1 Business Manager Frank Jacobs has been appointed to serve with local business and civic leadership on a St. Louis County economic rescue steering committee. Jacobs represents more than 5,000 highly skilled IBEW electricians and communication technicians who install and maintain critical power and communications infrastructure as well as rapidly evolving technology shaping the electrical industry. The steering committee will advise the St. Louis County Economic Rescue Team, which was created by St. Louis County Executive Sam Page on March 23, 2020.
The St. Louis County Economic Rescue Team was created to “address economic issues that are specific to workers and businesses in St. Louis County impacted by COVID-19.” It collaborates with St. Louis County’s economic development agencies and other civic entities.
“Frank Jacobs represents a highly skilled and safe workforce that has excelled at adapting to the needs of our communities, especially during the pandemic,” said St. Louis County Executive Sam Page. “As we look to the future, IBEW and its signatory electrical contractors will play an essential role in advancing improvements to energy, technology and communications infrastructure to support a resilient recovery.”
Jacobs’ IBEW workforce partners with the more than 150 contractor members of the St. Louis Chapter, National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) to form the labor-management partnership Electrical Connection. Together, the partnership has rapidly adapted to serve critical needs during the pandemic. That has included powering Covid-19 testing and triage tents at area hospitals and converting hotel rooms to serve coronavirus patients. Its communication technicians have also installed and maintain the backbone of connectivity that supports remote learning, planning, working and other engagements during the pandemic. In addition, its members have engineered and installed electrical and communications infrastructure in R&D facilities locally and nationally that are engaged in Covid-19 vaccine development.
Jacobs chairs the IBEW/NECA Joint Apprenticeship Trust Fund, which oversees workforce training at the IBEW/NECA Electrical Industry Training Center in St. Louis. For more than 75 years, the training center has produced more highly skilled and safe electricians and communication technicians than any program in Missouri. The training center is sustained by a $3 million annual investment by IBEW/NECA. It offers high-tech training, free of charge, with no student loans and at no taxpayer expense. Apprentices in the program earn a living with benefits as they are trained and can take advantage of continuing education programs that earn college credits.
Joining Jacobs on the steering committee are:
· Rick Stevens, president of Christian Hospital;
· Veta Jeffrey, executive director of Heartland St. Louis Black Chamber of Commerce;
· Kellie McCoy, former chief of staff to the CEO of Starbucks; and
· Jeff Pittman, chancellor of St. Louis Community College.
The IBEW/NECA Electrical Connection partnership provides safe and reliable electrical construction, maintenance, repair and replacement services across Missouri, the nation and the world. Learn more at www.electricalconnection.org.