Joining in the ribbon-cutting ceremony for Local 169’s new hall and training center Jan. 29 are, l. to r., Director of Political Affairs/SAIP Bridget Martin, City Councilman Kevin Rourke, IR Pat Stefancin (back row), City Councilman Tony Lalli, Allen Park Chamber of Commerce President Angel Gibson, Intl. Vice President – Great Lakes Larry McManamon Sr. (back row), Mayor Gary Burtka, Area Apprentice Coordinator Larry McManamon Jr. (back row), L-169 BM-ST Bob Hutsell, L-169 Pres./BA Mike Card, SAIP Tony Jacobs, L-744 (Cleveland) BM-ST Pat Gallagher (back row), L-169 BA Mark Wertz, L-169 BA Don Cochran, BA Jim Caloutte (back row), and L-85 (Toledo, Ohio) BM-ST Fred Keith. E. L. Conley, The News-Herald
Union hall is 10 times size of previous facility
LOCAL 169 (DETROIT) moved into spacious new digs Dec. 12 after renovating a 28,000-sq.-ft. building in Allen Park, Mich., that was formerly owned by a Ford Motor Co. vendor. The building is 10 times the size of the lodge’s previous hall in nearby Dearborn, and it consolidates office and meeting functions as well as training operations.
The local held an open house Jan. 29 to show off the facility. Larry McManamon Sr., International Vice President – Great Lakes, called the local’s new home “fantastic.” He said, “This is the largest training center in the Great Lakes section, and the welding area is great. Welding is the backbone of our trade. I think owners and the entire industry understand and appreciate the Boilermakers’ commitment to training, and this facility is sure to impress them.”
The training center includes 22 welding booths and a state-of-the-art air filtration system.
“This is a facility that will help our members meet the future needs of our customers,” said Local 169 BM-ST Robert Hutsell. “This is an investment in our future. We really need the additional space to adapt and to operate efficiently.”
“It means a lot to the industry that the Boilermakers were willing to make this kind of investment in a training facility,” said Brian Wimmer, president of Monarch Welding and a trustee on the Boilermakers and Blacksmiths Local 169 Training Fund. “It’s an outstanding facility, and I’m sure it will help improve the productivity and quality of the training. This will serve the industry and the local very well for years to come.”
The union hall offers more than a place to work and train. It’s also designed to communicate Boilermaker history and values. Display cases hold vintage tools, historic documents, and other items from years past. Walls are adorned with a mural as well as photo enlargements of job sites and members at work. And for special functions, the floor in the meeting area can be readily converted into a dance floor.
L-169’s open house drew guests from organized labor and business, and local and state politicians. U.S. Rep. Mark Schauer (D-7th MI) also attended.
Source: Marty Mulcahy, managing editor of The Building Tradesman