Associations - Page 2

AGC of Missouri Names 2022 Leadership


Branco Enterprises, Inc.’s Sean Thouvenot to Lead Statewide Organization

The Associated General Contractors of Missouri (AGCMO) announced its 2022 officers and board of directors for the statewide association representing contractors and suppliers in 110 counties throughout Missouri.

Sean Thouvenot, vice president of Branco Enterprises, Inc. has been elected chairman of the board.  Branco Enterprises, Inc., with offices in Neosho and Springfield, MO, was founded in 1933 as Branham Construction and has grown to be a leading provider of general contracting, design build and construction management services in the four state region. Branco Enterprises, Inc. has been a member of AGC since 1986 and Thouvenot has served on the AGC of Missouri board since the merger with AGC of St. Louis in 2015. 

Other AGC of Missouri officers for 2022 are: chairman-elect of the board – Tom Huster, KCI Construction Company; secretary/treasurer – Andy Ernst, Pace Construction Company; and immediate past chair – Scott Drury, Bloomsdale Excavating Co., Inc.  Also serving on the 2022 board of directors are highway & transportation division chair – Steve Bubanovich, H. R. Quadri Contractors, LLC; building division chair –Michael Kennedy, Jr., KAI Enterprises; and Steve Sellenriek of Sellenriek Construction, Inc. who recently was elected chair of AGCMO’s new utility infrastructure division. 

Serving on the board as directors representing contractor members are Doug Fronick, APAC-Central, Inc.; Mike Rallo, Jr., PARIC Corporation; Earl Ming, Alberici Constructors, Inc.; Mike Luth, Fred M. Luth & Sons, Inc.; and Kyle Phillips, Herzog Contracting Corp.

Jeff Montgomery of IWR North America also will serve as a director, representing specialty contractors, while Nalini S. Mahadevan of MLO Law LCC will serve as director, representing supplier/service providers. Collin Greene of Wright Construction Services, Inc. will serve ex-officio, representing the Construction Leadership Council. John LoBello of Travelers will serve ex-officio, representing the Young Executives Club.

The Associated General Contractors of Missouri (AGCMO) represents the united voice of the construction industry throughout the state of Missouri. AGC of Missouri represents nearly 550 commercial, industrial, heavy and highway contractors, industry partners and related firms in 110 counties across the state of Missouri. AGCMO operates offices in St. Louis, Jefferson City and Springfield. Visit:


Kyle McKenna to Lead the St. Louis Chapter of the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) As Executive Vice President


The St. Louis Chapter of the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) has named Kyle McKenna its new executive vice president.  NECA represents more than 150 electrical and communications contractors located in eastern Missouri.  All NECA contractors are signatory to collective bargaining agreements with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW).  NECA partners with IBEW Local 1 to form the Electrical Connection.  McKenna succeeds Douglas R. Martin, who has led NECA for more than 40 years.

A labor and employment attorney, McKenna has served as assistant executive director of NECA for the past two years. He will be responsible for negotiation and administration of collective bargaining agreements with three local unions of the IBEW, under which approximately 5,000 electricians and communication technicians are employed.  He will also serve as a management trustee on multi-employer health, pension, and other employee benefit funds.  In addition, McKenna will coordinate education, marketing, and public relations programs for member contractors and serve as a spokesman before governmental agencies in connection with legislation impacting the electrical and communication contracting industry. 

McKenna earned his law degree from Saint Louis University School of Law and has a degree in political science from the University of Missouri-Columbia.  He has previously served as a labor and employment attorney with Armstrong Teasdale, LLC and as a field attorney for the National Labor Relations Board. 

Like its IBEW partner, NECA can trace its roots to the first commercial use of electricity.  NECA was founded in 1901, 10 years after IBEW Local 1 in St. Louis founded the first electrical union in 1891.  The St. Louis Chapter NECA received its charter in 1940 and with the IBEW, established the IBEW/NECA Electrical Industry Training Center the following year, pioneering apprenticeship training in Missouri for the electrical and communications industry. Together, NECA and IBEW Local 1 have trained more highly skilled and safe electricians and communication technicians than any other education program in the state. Learn more about NECA at

The Electrical Connection IBEW/NECA partnership markets member skills and safety, invests in workforce development, develops strategic business and education partnerships, fortifies STEM education, and develops IBEW/NECA as a valuable resource to meet Missouri’s future energy and technology needs. Sixteen Electrical Connection-member contractors are among the 17 largest electrical contractors in the region ranked annually by the St. Louis Business Journal.  Learn more at


Electrical Connection Supports Rural & Urban “Shop with a Cop” Programs


28-Year-Long Commitment to Brighten the Holidays for Children Continues

In Desloge, Mo., children waited patiently to be taken on a shopping spree by law enforcement.  In Ferguson, Mo., families came to the police department to be given gifts that their children wouldn’t otherwise have received.  Both were part of annual “Shop with a Cop” holiday giving programs the week of Dec. 12, 2021. Both were supported by the Electrical Connection as part of its 28-year-long commitment to the law enforcement community trust building program.  The Electrical Connection is a partnership of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 1 and the St. Louis Chapter, National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA).

Danny Miller, COO of Total Electric, first engaged the Electrical Connection in 1993 in the St. Francois County “Shop with a Cop” program, which has grown to become one of the largest in the nation.  This year, it served a record 590 children.  The enduring St. Francois County program inspired the IBEW/NECA partnership to re-energize and support the Ferguson “Shop with a Cop” program in 2016.  This year, the Electrical Connection donated a total of $10,000 to both programs and has now contributed more than $100,000 to support “Shop with a Cop” over the past 28 years.

“’Shop with a Cop’ is an enormous logistical undertaking,” noted Miller. “In St. Francois County, they must engage the schools to find the families most in need and then mobilize law enforcement from across the state to take the children holiday shopping.  It’s worth every moment of exhaustive planning when you see the smiles on children’s faces.”

The St. Francois County “Shop with a Cop” was held on December 14, 2021 at the Wal-Mart at 407 N State St. in Desloge.  About 200 Law enforcement and first responders from throughout the state were paired with children to take them shopping for holiday gifts. Since 1993, the Electrical Connection has contributed $84,000 to the St. Francois County program. 

The Ferguson “Shop with a Cop,” which the Electrical Connection has provided $30,000 in support since 2016, was held on December 16, 2021. It served more than 30 children. Parents arrived at the Ferguson Police Department at 222 S. Florissant Rd. to pick up gifts for their children from law enforcement.

“It’s a great program to brighten the holidays for families in need while helping law enforcement build community trust,” noted Jim Curran, executive vice president, Electrical Connection. “For the Electrical Connection, it is also an opportunity to support the communities we serve and further engage families and communities in our efforts to create career opportunities for all the electrical industry.”    

The Electrical Connection represents 135 IBEW-signatory electrical contractors and more than 5,000 highly skilled IBEW electricians and communication technicians.  Members of the Electrical Connection provide safe and reliable electrical construction, maintenance, repair and replacement services across Missouri, the nation and the world.  For more information visit


Structural Engineering Industry Responds to Tornado Disaster with Sympathy, Action, and Resources


The National Council of Structural Engineers Associations’ (NCSEA) thoughts are with the families and communities affected by the devastating tornadoes that impacted Arkansas, Illinois, Kentucky, Missouri, Mississippi, and Tennessee on December 11, 2021. As Structural Engineers, this event affects us deeply, both personally and professionally, as our life’s work is to help ensure public safety in the built environment.

As the recovery efforts continue, Structural Engineers are called on to assist. NCSEA’s Structural Engineering Emergency Response (SEER) Committee is coordinating with the affected states to assist local jurisdictions with building safety evaluations when requested.

NCSEA remains committed to our continued engagement in code development focused on tornado risk mitigation. The NCSEA Wind Engineering Committee continues to advocate for strengthened building code provisions for structures in high wind and tornado-prone regions of the United States.

The Structural Engineering industry is also a resource for information on current and future tornado design requirements and the efforts of our profession in preparing communities for future events. Following is a link to some background information that was authored and reviewed by the NCSEA Wind Engineering Committee.

Structural Engineering for Tornadoes – FAQ

The National Council of Structural Engineers Associations (NCSEA) was formed to constantly improve the standard level of practice of the structural engineering profession. The Association’s vision is that structural engineers are valued for their contributions to safe structures and resilient communities. The Association’s mission is that NCSEA, in partnership with its Member Organizations, supports practicing structural engineers to be highly qualified professionals and successful leaders.


Employment Lags February 2020 Level in 32 States, Dodge Starts Fall in November but Rise YTD


Submitted by AGC.

Seasonally adjusted construction employment in November lagged the February 2020 level in 32 states and exceeded it in 18 states and the District of Columbia, according to AGC’s analysis of Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data posted on Friday. (February 2020 was the month in which employment peaked nationally before plunging during widespread shutdowns in March and April 2020.) Texas lost the most construction jobs over 21 months (-42,600 jobs or -5.5%), followed by New York (-39,700, -9.7%) and California (-23,100, -2.5%). Louisiana had the largest percentage loss (-14%, -19,800 jobs), followed by Wyoming (-13%, -3,000) and New York. Florida added the most jobs (8,700, 1.5%), followed by Utah (8,200, 7.2%) and Washington (6,200, 2.8%). South Dakota added the highest percentage (10%, 2,500 jobs), followed by Idaho (8.7%, 4,800) and Utah. For the month, construction employment increased in 36 states and D.C., declined in 13 states, and was flat in Kansas. Florida added the most jobs (8,200, 1.4%), followed by Illinois (3,800, 1.7%) and Texas (3,600, 0.5%). Montana had the largest percentage gain (800 jobs, 2.7%), followed by Missouri (2.6%, 3,200), Wisconsin (2.1%, 2,600) and Vermont (2.1%, 300). Louisiana lost the most construction jobs for the month (-2.200 jobs, -1.8%), followed by North Carolina (-1,900, -0.8%) and New Jersey (-1,800, -1.2%). Louisiana also had the largest one-month percentage loss (-2,200, -1.8%), followed by Oklahoma (-1.5%, -1,200), New Jersey and North Carolina. (BLS reports combined totals for mining, logging, and construction in D.C., Delaware, and Hawaii. Because there are few, if any, mining or logging jobs in these locations, AGC treats the levels and changes as solely construction employment.)

Total construction starts fell 14% from October to November at a seasonally adjusted annual rate, data firm Dodge Construction Network reported on Thursday. “Nonbuilding and nonresidential building starts bore the brunt of the decline, falling 30% and 21% respectively after seeing sharp increases in October as three large projects broke ground. Residential starts gained a modest 3%. Without October’s large projects, total construction starts in November would have increased by 5%.” Over the first 11 months of 2021 combined, starts increased 13% compared to January-November 2020. Nonresidential building starts climbed 11% year-to-date. Commercial starts increased 7% year-to-date; manufacturing starts, 86%; and institutional starts, 5%. Nonbuilding starts rose 1% year-to-date: environmental public works, 19%; utility/gas plant starts, 15%; highway and bridge starts, -7%; and miscellaneous nonbuilding, -15%. Residential starts rose 20% year-to-date, with single-family starts up 20% and multifamily starts up 23%.

Housing starts (units) jumped 12% at a seasonally adjusted annual rate from October to November and 8.3% year-over-year from the November 2020 level, the Census Bureau reported on Thursday. Year-to-date starts for January-November 2021 rose 16% from the same months in 2020. Single-family starts climbed 11% for the month and 15% year-to-date. Multifamily (five or more units) starts increased 12% and 20%, respectively. Residential permits increased 3.6% from October and 19% year-to-date, as single-family permits increased 2.7% and 16%, respectively, while multifamily permits increased 6.1% and 28%. The number of authorized multifamily units that have not started—an indicator of potential near-term starts—soared 55% year-over-year.

“In the third quarter [Q3] of 2021 apartments and other multifamily residential construction showed a continuation of the suburban shift that was characteristic of prior quarters, per the most recent data from NAHB’s Home Building Geography Index,” the National Association of Home Builders reported on Thursday. From Q3 2020 to Q3 2021, “the share of new multifamily permits fell from 40.5% to 37.9% in large metro core markets. Meanwhile, the permit share in small metro area counties increased from 24.9% to 27.2%. Though these percentage changes seem relatively small, they are statistically significant changes. Historically, year-to-year changes in multifamily market share are usually slow to develop and rarely move more than one percentage point higher or lower. This makes these latest year-over-year numbers noteworthy. The market shares [of] small towns and rural areas, which make up less than 10% of all activity…, as with the other lower density submarkets,…have been rising since 2016.”

U.S. population growth slowed between July 1, 2020 and July 1, 2021 to “0.1%, the lowest rate since the nation’s founding,” the Census Bureau reported today. Population changes over time are a major contributor to demand for numerous types of construction, funding for public construction, and supply of potential construction workers. “The slow rate of growth can be attributed to decreased net international migration, decreased fertility, and increased mortality due in part to the COVID-19 pandemic,” but also to rising numbers of very old people and more deaths of younger adults from suicide and drug overdoses. Population increased in 33 states and decreased in D.C. and 17 states, “a historically large number of states to lose population.” Idaho grew the fastest of any state, 2.9%, as it added 53,151 residents, 90% from other states. Population grew by 1.7% in Utah (46,291) and Montana (18,078) and 1.4% in Arizona (98,330). Texas had the largest numerical increase (310,288 or 1.1%, 7th in percentage growth), followed by Florida (211,196; 1.0%, 8th), Arizona, and North Carolina (93,985; 0.9%, 11th). D.C. had the steepest percentage loss (-2.9%, -20,043), followed by New York (-1.6%, -319,020), Illinois (-0.9%, -113,776), Hawaii (-0.7%, -10,358), and California (-0.7%, -261,902). New York had the largest numerical decrease, followed by California and Illinois. State gains and losses were driven primarily by state-to-state migration, as all states had net international immigration. The largest net domestic migration gains were in Florida (220,890), Texas (170,307) and Arizona (93,026). The largest migration to other states occurred in California (-367,299), New York (-352,185), and Illinois (-122,460).


Infrastructure Bill Will Enhance St. Louis Region’s Freight Network


Submitted By Mary Lamie

Mary Lamie

The new federal infrastructure bill recently signed into law paves the way for historic investment in our nation’s core infrastructure priorities – including roads and bridges, rail, transit, ports, airports, as well as the electric grid, water systems and broadband. The St. Louis Regional Freightway is especially encouraged to see the bill includes more than $110 billion dedicated for roads, bridges and other major projects. The funding allocated for bridges alone represents the largest investment in bridges since the beginning of the interstate highway system. An additional $16.6 billion will support improvements in our nation’s ports and waterways, while $25 billion will be directed toward airports.

The funds being committed to these critical components of our nation’s freight network are impressive, but we’re also excited to see the process through which some of these monies will be allocated. That process includes dozens of competitive grant programs, many of them new, which is good for the St. Louis region given our proven success competing for such grants in the past. Our approach to developing and advocating for funding for our Priority Projects is a nationally recognized model being used by the U.S. Department of Transportation. It played a role in helping to secure a $21.5 million federal grant for the rehabilitation and reconstruction of the Merchants Bridge, the region’s highest priority infrastructure project, which is on target to be completed by early 2023.

We also are pleased to see that funds are being dedicated to support surface transportation projects and multi-modal, multi-jurisdictional projects of national or regional significance. While the Merchants Bridge fits the bill on both fronts, we are hopeful that the funds being made available through this infrastructure bill could be leveraged to build on other projects underway in our region.

Among those projects are the work to enhance key stretches of I-70, one of 17 corridors already identified by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) as a High-Volume Domestic Agriculture Highway corridor. Funding has already been secured for a portion of this project referred to as the Wentzville curve, and there is great potential to secure funding for additional improvements needed as a result of the new bill.  The Missouri and Illinois Departments of Transportation are already collaborating on $600M in improvements to the I-270 corridor in the St. Louis region – one of the nation’s primary east-west manufacturing and logistics corridors — and additional work needed could also benefit from funding included in this new infrastructure bill. Another partially funded project that could benefit is IDOT’s relocated IL Route 3 project in East St. Louis and Sauget, Illinois, which will decrease congestion, improve safety, address clearance issues, and better accommodate truck and freight movements.

With our existing multimodal infrastructure, capacity and relative lack of congestion, the St. Louis region continues to help support the national and global supply chain, performing well during normal and extreme situations, whether caused by a pandemic, severe weather, global fluctuations, or other factors. This new source of dedicated funding will only strengthen our freight network and position us to play an even more pivotal role in the global supply chain.

The St. Louis Regional Freightway looks forward to working with our various partners and stakeholders in the bi-state region to secure funding through the new bill to reinforce our world-class freight network and further solidify our region as a global freight hub.

Mary Lamie is the Executive Vice President of Multi Modal Enterprises for Bi-State Development and head of the St. Louis Regional Freightway.


Home Builders Association Donates $15,000 to Youth In Need


On behalf of the Home Builders Charitable Foundation (HBCF), 2021 HBA President Bill Wannstedt (Consort Homes) (left) presented a $15,000 donation to Youth In Need grants manager John Mertens.

The donation will be used to remodel a bathroom and replace the access ramp in the organization’s emergency shelter. The updates will make the emergency shelter safer and provide a more welcoming environment for youth who have experienced crises and trauma, important aspects to help them heal. Youth In Need provides comprehensive shelter and housing services in the aim of bettering the community and providing support to youth who need it most.

The HBA is a local trade association of more than 600 member firms representing the residential construction industry. The Home Builders Charitable Foundation, the HBA’s charitable arm, is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing housing assistance to people or organizations with special shelter needs.


SITE Honors Frank Marchesi Sr. with President’s Award for Distinguished Service


Frank Marchesi, Sr., of Bi-State Utilities Co., has received the President’s Award from the SITE Improvement Association in recognition of his many years of dedicated service to the organization.  The award is SITE’s highest honor and is given to a member who has provided outstanding guidance, foresight, time and leadership to help the organization reach its goals and maintaining its influential role within the construction industry.  This is only the eleventh President’s Award presented by SITE during its 55-year history.

Bi-State Utilities joined SITE in 1993, and during that time Marchesi Sr. has served on SITE’s Board of Directors for 6 years, chaired its Management Seminars Committee for 18 years, represented SITE during Operating Engineers Local 513 negotiations and spearheaded the Relocation Committee when SITE was seeking a permanent office location.  In addition, he has served on the Construction Craft Laborers’ Apprenticeship Committee and Training Fund since in 2010.

“Frank gives so much of his time and expertise to our organization, often working behind the scenes to not attract attention.” said SITE’s Board President Mike Steiniger, whose decision it was to honor Marchesi Sr. “This award is just a small token of the membership’s appreciation of his service in helping the association grow and better serve the construction industry in eastern Missouri. I also want to thank Frank’s wife Peanut for supporting him and the Association through all these years.”

Past recipients of SITE’s President’s Award include Joe Barbagallo of Barbagallo Grading, Ron Schaefer of Schaefer-Meyer Grading, Ken Karsten of Karsten Equipment Company, Bob Morice of Nor Vel Construction, Ray Daub of Kirkwood Excavating, Mark Bussen of Bussen Quarries, Joe Hoette of Hoette Concrete Construction, Mike Jerome of Bi-State Utilities, Charlie Bollmeier of C.E. Bollmeier Company and Joe Leritz of Leritz Contracting/Busy Bee Paving.

The SITE Improvement Association advances the construction industry in eastern Missouri through public policy advocacy, labor relations support, safety and leadership training and professional networking. Established in 1966 as an independent trade organization, SITE represents more than 230 contractors and suppliers in the Concrete, Asphalt Paving, Sewer/Utility, Highway/Bridge, Earthmoving, Landscaping and Specialty construction sectors.  For more information, visit


Electrical Connection Supports U.S. Probation Officers Holiday Giving Program for Families in the Justice System


IBEW Local 1 Hosts Dec. 15, 2021 Event at Its Union Hall

More than 100 families served by the United States District Court Eastern District of Missouri, Probation Division received holiday gifts as the Electrical Connection again supported the division’s holiday gift giving program. And like last year, the event was hosted by the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 1 at its union hallat 5850 Elizabeth Ave.  IBEW Local 1 and St. Louis Chapter of the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) partner to form the Electrical Connection.

“At the heart of what we do for the families we serve in the justice systems is stabilize and improve lives,” noted Lisa White, supervising U.S. probation officer.  “Part of that is brightening the holidays and we greatly appreciate the Electrical Connection’s hospitality and financial support to make that happen.”  In addition to hosting the event at IBEW’s union hall, the Electrical Connection also donated $2,500 to support the holiday gift giving program.

On Dec. 15, 2021, families pulled up in cars behind the union hall where free frozen turkeys, hams and other gifts were delivered with the help of the probation division and members of the Electrical Connection.

“It’s the fourth year that our IBEW/NECA partnership has supported the U.S. Probation Officers holiday giving program,” noted Jim Curran, executive vice president, Electrical Connection. “In addition to brightening the holidays, we also hope to ‘plant the seed’ that our partnership offers great career opportunities for all at the IBEW/NECA Electrical Industry Training Center next door.”

            The holiday giving event is part of the U.S Probation Office’s Project Re-Direct an innovative approach to rehabilitation. It is an intense seven-month program led by Rebecca Bledsoe and Clark E. Porter, MSW, an ex-felon himself, who is now a program support specialist for United States District Court Eastern District of Missouri.   The program offers substance abuse treatment, community service, employment assistance, and support for ex-offenders to reduce recidivism and reorient their lives to give greater purpose beneficial to society.  Learn more about Porter and Project Re-Direct in this video.

Members of the Electrical Connection provide safe and reliable electrical construction, maintenance, repair and replacement services across Missouri, the nation and the world.  For more information visit


Leadership Development Council Presents Donations to Violence Prevention Center SW Illinois


The Southern Illinois Builders Association Leadership Development Council wrapped up 2021 with a donation of $1,930 and several toys (pictured above) to the Violence Prevention Center Southwestern Illinois.  Thanks to the generosity of the following companies/individuals:

Yaekel & Associates Insurance Serv., Inc., Kevin Benson, Sharon Castillo, Jerry Yaekel, Hank’s Excavating & Landscaping, Inc., Chris Bayer, Daphne Dockins, Mark Henke, Peggy Neff, Cheryl O’Neil, Renee & Hank Rohwedder, Egyptian Workspace Partners, Supplied Industrial Solutions, Carpenters’ Local 664, Husch Blackwell L.L.P., Gregory Communications, Construction Services, IMPACT Strategies, Inc., Geotechnology, Inc., Bruce Holland, Holland Construction Services, Inc., Keller Construction, Inc., Laborers’ Local 773, RP Coatings, Inc., Limbaugh Construction Co. Inc., MAV Masonry, Inc., Millstone Weber, L.L.C., Bank of Springfield-Doug Peters, Plocher Construction Company, Inc., redbox+ of St. Louis Metro East Dumpster, Central Bank of St. Louis-Linette Warnecke, Terracon-Jamie Weaver, First National Bank of Waterloo.

Photo Above: Stacy Friederich (left), Chair of the SIBA Leadership Development Council; and Donna Richter (right), CEO, Southern Illinois Builders Association; present toys and cash donation to Melissa Tutterow (center), Director of Development, Violence Prevention Center of Southwestern Illinois