AGC of Missouri

Women of STEEL Makes Strong Debut

By DENISE HASTY, AGC of Missouri

AGC of Missouri has launched a new women’s construction group that is gaining a large following across Missouri and attracting national attention. Just coming off its first Annual Conference and about to undertake another four networking events, AGCMO’s new Women of STEEL group also will be a featured program topic at next week’s AGC of America Annual Convention in Las Vegas.

Construction firms and associations around the country have been celebrating women’s roles in construction during NAWIC’s Women in Construction Week ™ (March 5-11). This year’s theme, “Many Paths, One Mission,” celebrates the different journeys women have taken toward the same goal: strengthening and amplifying the success of women in the construction industry. And that’s exactly what some key AGCMO members and staff had in mind when they formulated the idea for a new Women of STEEL (seeking to engage, elevate and lead) interest group over a year ago.

According to AGCMO member Amanda Bohnert, CPSM, chief marketing officer, S. M. Wilson, and one of Women of STEEL’s co-founders, “There are many women working in construction who are not a member of the trades or formal groups.  However, they are vital to our industry and work in all sorts of jobs, i.e. HR, estimating, purchasing, project support, accounting, marketing, etc. When we founded Women of STEEL and created our mission, we were looking for a way to help them expand their professional horizons, learn from others’ experiences and have an opportunity for professional development”.

“At the same time, we saw an opportunity to elevate member engagement and provide a greater ROI for our member companies,” Bohnert added. “Our initial year exceeded our expectations with an outreach to more than 500 women, engaging member firms

throughout the state.”

The group started with a strong mission and no budget. Through social media, direct mail, newsletter promotion and word-of-mouth, interest grew for a virtual kick-off meeting last spring followed by a hybrid presentation by career coach Maisha Christian and a series of happy hour networking events around the state. The group also had a breakout session at the annual AGCMO/MoDOT Co-op meeting in December. Women of STEEL has accumulated an impressive following of 500-plus women in the group’s debut year, culminating with the first Women of STEEL two-day annual conference last month in Jefferson City.

Social media has been instrumental in connecting prospective members to Women of STEEL.  Event listings and updates can be found at: Facebook , Instagram, LinkedIn and in the organization’s Facebook Group.

Upcoming Women of STEEL events include a special breakout session, “Discovering Your Superpowers,” and WOS happy hour at the AGCMO Annual Convention in Cape Girardeau March 27-28. WOS happy hours are scheduled May 16 and 17 in mid-Missouri and Kansas City, respectively, followed by an event at S. M. Wilson hosted by WilsonWomen on June 22nd and another in southeast Missouri on Nov. 16.

Plans are already underway for a 2024 Women of STEEL conference. Topic suggestions already are flowing in – from learning about contract terms and negotiations, successfully navigating difficult conversations and avoiding the Superwoman Syndrome, to increasing confidence and juggling work and family while succeeding at both. Have ideas? WOS would love to engage with even more women in the industry.

For information or to register for upcoming events, contact Denise Hasty at

Denise Hasty, CAE, is Vice-President, Advocacy and Public Relations, for AGCMO.

Construction Robotics Featured at 9th Annual AGCMO Tech Conference



Robots that supplement construction teams by performing repetitive tasks are preparing for their “invasion” at project sites, according to Tarlton’s Scott Green, presenter at one of the breakout sessions at the 9th annual AGC of Missouri Design & Construction Technology Conference on Oct. 22.

The St. Louis Council of Construction Consumers (SLC3) partnered with AGCMO to host the event, held this year at the Eric P. Newman Education Center in the Central West End.

Green, Tarlton’s director of technology, quality and productivity, told the audience it’s likely that St. Louis’ construction industry will soon embrace what is occurring on the West Coast. Large projects are recruiting robots to perform time-intensive, labor-intensive repetitive tasks to mitigate safety risks and compensate for the shortage of field workers.

“These task-performing machines are assisting in everything from demolition to material handling, bricklaying, laser scanning and more,” Green said. “They’re not replacing the human element, but rather complementing the construction workforce, reducing risk, enhancing efficiency, reducing the potential for human error and reducing safety risks on the jobsite.”

Examples of non-human counterparts that St. Louis jobsites might see soon include:

Dusty Robotics’ FieldPrinter: This robot-powered tool automates the layout process within 1/16-inch accuracy, printing full-size floorplans on the deck for builders.

TinyMobile’s mobile robots: Marking lines on sporting fields is the mission of this bot.

Civ Robotics’ mobile robots: These surveying field robots mark lines on roadways.

Advanced Construction Robotics’ IronBot: This rebar carrying and placing robot relieves the burden of heavy lifting by self-placing up to 5,000-pound rebar bundles.

SkyMul’s SkyMul robot: This drone identifies and ties rebar intersections.

SAM (Semi-Automated Mason): SAM lays up to 3,000 bricks per day, four times faster than a human.

MULE (Material Unit Lift Enhancer): This cargo-carrying robot can lift and place material weighing up to 135 pounds.

Hilti Jaibot: Locating and drilling color-coded holes in ceilings and decks at heights of up to 16.5 feet is this robot’s task.

Boston Dynamics’ Spot: An agile robot, this one navigates terrain, climbs stairs and can carry up to 31 pounds for 90 minutes.

AGC of Missouri, MoDOT Celebrate 65 Years of Interstates, Policy Org Releases Transport Report


The Associated General Contractors of Missouri, Missouri Dept. of Transportation and elected officials from St. Charles city and county celebrated the 65th anniversary of the genesis of America’s interstate highway system on Aug. 13.

Missouri was the first state to break ground on what would become a nationwide network of 46,876 paved miles of interstate routes, of which nearly 1,400 miles are in Missouri. During President Dwight D. Eisenhower’s term, the federal government let contracts to begin building. The stretch of Interstate 70 where last week’s celebration took place represents the first spot in the U.S. where shovels hit dirt to begin constructing the interstate system.

“Right here, the first shovel of dirt turned on the greatest economic engine in the U.S., our interstate system,” said Len Toenjes, president of the AGC of Missouri.

Tom Blair, MoDOT St. Louis District engineer, said the agency is ready to move forward on several Tier I projects awaiting funding through the proposed $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure deal approved by the U.S. Senate on Aug. 10 and awaiting action in the House. The bill devotes $550 million in new spending for roads and bridges, broadband internet, public transit and electric utilities.

The prioritized (currently unfunded) projects are: I-70 at I-64, I-70 at St. Louis Lambert International Airport, a segment of I-270 that is only two lanes in both directions and I-55 in Jefferson County.

“MoDOT stands ready to produce increased results as a result of this increased investment,” Blair said.

Also part of the Aug. 13 interstate anniversary celebration was Carolyn Bonifas Kelly, director of communications and research for TRIP, a DC-based nonprofit national transportation research group. The organization just released recommendations for the restoration and renewal of the interstate highway system. To see the full report, go to

“As of May 2021, the level of interstate volume is 3 percent above 2019 levels,” said Kelly. “Missouri has the 9th highest volume in the nation in terms of interstate truck traffic. It’s critical that the U.S. provides long-term, sustainable and adequate transportation infrastructure funding. The long-term vision that helped establish our interstate highway system 65 years ago is needed again today.”

AGC Opposes PRO Act, Says Legislation Would Overturn 70 Years of Precedent


The Associated General Contractors continues to oppose the PRO (Protecting the Right to Organize) Act, H.R. 842, legislation seeking to change dozens of longstanding labor laws regarding collective bargaining.

AGC of America CEO Stephen Sandherr says the legislation, which the U.S. House of Representatives passed 225-206 back in March, remains in the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions where it has been for nearly four months. Backed by the AFL-CIO, the bill provides for conditions that would strengthen unions’ leverage in collective bargaining with union construction companies and in efforts to unionize open-shop firms. H.R. 842, if passed in the Senate and signed into law by President Joe Biden, would also require employers to divulge private information about their employees and remove prohibitions on partial strikes, slowdown strikes and intermittent strikes.

“On its face, the PRO Act seems to be a rather limited application,” said Sandherr. “But in reality, the bill goes way beyond that. This is the most aggressive and ambitious menu of changes to federal labor law ever offered by the AFL-CIO. It would overturn over 70 years of precedent.”

Under H.R. 842, secondary boycotts – boycotts allowing unions to picket against any employer regardless of whether they are directly involved in a dispute with that union – would be allowed, according to Sandherr.

“This measure means many workers could be idled for a dispute in which they do not stand to benefit,” he said.

The PRO Act also includes a provision related to employee classification that takes aim at the use of independent contractors. “This would make it extremely difficult for entrepreneurial construction industry workers to establish their own businesses,” Sandherr said.

AGC of Missouri President Leonard Toenjes says unless the Senate’s filibuster rule is altered, the PRO Act will likely remain in committee.

AGC of Missouri, Mayor and SSM Health SLU Hospital Project Partners Celebrate BuildMO Week



The St. Louis region has recruited 7,100 individuals into its construction workforce over the past 12 months, quantifying it as in the top four 358 U.S. metro areas to grow their construction trades jobs to this extent.

AGC of Missouri President Leonard Toenjes, speaking at Tuesday’s BuildMO Week celebration in front of the ambulance drop-off area of the future SSM Health Saint Louis University hospital, said statewide construction job growth has also been record setting, year over year, since 12 months ago.

“In August, construction employment in Missouri totaled 125,000, up 2,300 since July 2019, making Missouri the second-highest percentage increase in one-month construction job growth in the nation,” Toenjes said. “Construction is a wonderful choice to build a lifelong career. The average wage for a construction worker in Missouri was $59,442 in 2018, 20 percent higher than the state average for all private-sector employees. Many skilled workers are earning well into six figures every year.”

And that was the crux of Tuesday’s brief press conference: To remind St. Louisans of the impact that the construction industry, its people and its projects, have upon the city, the region and the state.

Alberici Constructors Healthcare Market Leader Troy Musson provided an update on SSM Health Saint Louis University Hospital, the venue for BuildMO 2019. Musson said the 800,000-square-foot hospital is on schedule for substantial completion in May 2020 and a Sept. 1, 2020 opening.

“Advances in technology and lean practices – such as advanced scheduling techniques and modular construction – have enabled our team’s craftsmanship and innovation to contribute to what we see today,” said Musson. “We have an outstanding workforce that is working safely and skillfully on this incredible project and has contributed nearly one million man-hours so far.”

City of St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson said SSM Health’s investment in the new campus – which will include 316 private patient rooms and an expanded Level I trauma center and emergency department – is but one clear example of the nearly $10 billion in construction activity that will occur within the next 12 months across the city.

“There are cranes in the sky and construction dumpsters on the curbs here in St. Louis,” Krewson said. “And it’s a great thing to see those dumpsters. It means someone had the confidence and foresight to invest in our community. The level of investment in this corridor of the city alone – from downtown to Midtown – is indicative of the powerful, positive impact that the construction industry and its workers have on our city and region.”

Tarlton Garners Agc Of Missouri 2018 Construction Keystone Award


Museum Building addition entrance and original Museum Building.

Award Honors Highest Achievements of Region’s Construction Firms

The historic renovation of the Stephen and Peter Sachs Museum at Missouri Botanical Garden in St. Louis, with Tarlton Corp. serving as construction manager, won a 2018 Construction Keystone Award from the Associated General Contractors of Missouri. This year’s honor marks the ninth time Tarlton was recognized for a top Keystone Award-winning project since the inception of the competition.

Tarlton was among 10 winners chosen from a highly competitive field of 30 finalists at the 21st Annual Keystone Awards on Nov. 8. The AGC of Missouri Keystone Awards program recognizes contractors who meet and successfully resolve challenges on construction projects.

“Recognition by the AGC of Missouri is one of the highest honors a general contractor can receive,” said Tracy Hart, president, Tarlton Corp. “We are proud of the skill, teamwork and spirit of the Tarlton teams on our projects, and we appreciate that in collaboration with the project owners and stakeholders, we can make these lasting contributions to the community.”

Tarlton’s work on the 7,000-square-foot Stephen and Peter Sachs Museum, an iconic pre-Civil War structure on the grounds of the world-renowned Missouri Botanical Garden, won in the “Building Construction Project Under $10 million” category. The museum, which was opened in 1859 by St. Louis businessman and philanthropist Henry Shaw, served as the Garden’s first scientific research facility, library and herbarium of more than 62,000 specimens. Widely considered one of the most historically significant buildings in the Midwest, the building had been closed to the public for more than three decades. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Working with project architect Christner Inc., Tarlton’s scope of work included an aggressive schedule, unforeseen conditions and an unexpected discovery during the demolition of a plaster drop ceiling: the paintings of three noted botanists on a barrel-vault ceiling hidden above the false ceiling in a room adjacent to the main exhibit hall. The discovery temporarily halted work while conservators from EverGreene Architectural Arts in Brooklyn, N.Y., were brought in for the careful restoration.

Meanwhile, in the main exhibit hall, construction and artistry worked side by side as the Tarlton team restored historic finishes, completed structural improvements and erected scaffolding to allow art conservators to access the ceiling two stories up. There, they undertook the painstaking replication of a painted botanical mural spanning 12 separate panels overhead.

To usher visitors into the space, Tarlton built a modern 2,000-square-foot addition that connects to the museum, which serves as the new accessible entrance and houses public amenities. The two-story addition’s glass curtainwall provides occupants with a feeling of being surrounded by nature and was designed in accordance with preservation principles outlined by the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for the Treatment of Historic Properties and the U.S. National Park Service.

Additional updates include an expanded light-filled lobby that offers space for exhibits, artwork and other displays; a renovated lower-level gallery; and a new staircase that links the two floors.

The Stephen and Peter Sachs Museum project garnered additional Keystone Award recognition with a win by Niehaus Building Services LLC in the “Specialty/Subcontractor Building Construction Project Under $3 million” category. Two other subcontractors on the project – Guarantee Electrical Co. and Kirberg Co. – also submitted nominations for their work on the museum. It marked the first time all three finalists in a single category had worked on the same project.

The AGC of Missouri represents approximately 550 construction and construction-related firms in the state of Missouri that perform building, highway, and infrastructure construction. It is affiliated with several national organizations, including AGC of America.

St. Louis-based Tarlton Corp. is a leader in general contracting and construction management throughout the Midwest. The firm has completed many landmark projects in and around St. Louis and holds steadfast to its goal to improve the lives of St. Louisans through construction, civic involvement and philanthropy.

Carpenters Regional Council – AGC of Missouri Reach 5-Year Extension


AGC of Missouri and the Carpenters Regional Council have reached an agreement on a new 5-year extension to the May 1, 2013 – 2018 agreement.  The following are the details of the agreement:

  • Five-Year Agreement, expiring April 30, 2023.
  • Wages – Total Package Increases of $1.75 first year and 2.5% increase each remaining year thereafter.
    o This equates to the following increases:
    – 5/1/2018 — $1.75 = $56.15 Total Package
    (Wage – $1.00; Pension – $0.50; Welfare – $0.25)
    – 5/1/2019 — $1.40 = $57.55 Total Package
    – 5/1/2020 — $1.44 = $58.99 Total Package
    – 5/1/2021 — $1.47 = $60.46 Total Package
    – 5/1/2022 — $1.51 = $61.97 Total package
  • Apprentice wages and benefits shall be a percentage of commercial journeyman scale and a corresponding percent of the respective fringes. (click here for a proposed spreadsheet that will go in effect on May 1, 2018)
  • Effective May 1, 2018
    o The double fringe benefit contribution on time and one-half overtime hours will be reduced to time and one-half fringe benefits.
  • Effective May 1, 2018 the CTAF contribution will increase by 1 cent to $0.21.  In addition, on May 1, 2020 the CTAF contribution will increase by 1 cent to $0.22.
  • All other terms and conditions of the AGC of Missouri agreement remain as is.

If you have questions or concerns, please contact Bill Kroeger or Len Toenjes.

In Memoriam Ralph V. Drury



Ralph V. Drury

Ralph V. Drury
March 26, 1931 – March 16, 2017

Ralph Drury, formerly with Bloomsdale Excavating Co. Inc., passed away on March 16, 2017.  He served on the AGC of Missouri Board of Directors for 18 years in addition to serving on the AGC of St. Louis Board of Directors from 1986 through 1991.

Ralph was an Airman First Class in the U.S. Air Force, Executive Vice President of Bloomsdale Excavating Co. Inc., Past Grand Knight of K of C 1048, Past Commander of Legion Post 554, 18 Year Director of Associated General Contractors of Missouri, 20 Year Board Member of Mid-East Construction Association, 22 Year Trustee with Associated General Contractors – Eastern District Laborers Training, 30+ Year Alderman City of Bloomsdale, and General Partner of Pointe Basse Development.

Ralph lived life to the fullest with his loving wife Lucille, their children and spouses.  He was blessed with 13 grandchildren and 30 great-grandchildren. He lived a very full 85 years.  Ralph was a consummate provider, loving husband, father, grandfather, a walking sunshine of truth and humor and was known as “Giant Papa” to his great grandchildren.  He has helped shape numerous lives and because of him we hope to continue his GIANT Legacy.  Ralph had a tremendous work ethic and was a very generous and loving man that many looked up to.

Click Here for Ralph Drury’s Obituary

AGC Of Missouri Honored With 2017 Arcus Award


Construction Group Recognized for Inclusion and Talent Attraction

The Associated General Contractors of Missouri was recognized with the Arcus Award for Inclusion and Talent Attraction at the 4th Annual Arcus Awards event on Feb. 23. The Academy Awards-style program, sponsored by the St. Louis Regional Chamber and presented by RubinBrown LLP, honored the achievements of companies and organizations that inspire a greater St. Louis. Over 850 executives, entrepreneurs and civic leaders attended the dinner program at the Hyatt Regency St. Louis at the Arch.

The AGC of Missouri (AGCMO) was one of two organizations recognized for innovative inclusion initiatives in the awards category, sponsored by Express Scripts. AGCMO was the first of 92 chapters of AGC of America to hire a Vice President of Inclusion and to create an inclusion department. In collaboration with its members and other industry partners, AGCMO also developed a number of initiatives including operating the Construction Careers Center charter high school, supporting the Building Union Diversity program, being a financial contributor and board member of the Regional Union Construction Center that provides advisory boards of directors for minority and women construction firms, and investing in serving on the board of the Contractor Loan Fund, a $10.6 million private equity fund that provides financing for minority and women-owned businesses. AGCMO also established relationships with the Father’s Support Center and the Missouri’s Division of Corrections to explore apprenticeship opportunities.

The other organization recognized in this category was TheBANK of Edwardsville which opened a fully bilingual banking center inside the Fairmont City, Illinois, public library in 2015. It serves a community that is 70 percent Hispanic and where almost 40 percent of the residents live below the poverty level. Fairmont City had no other banks, forcing the residents to rely on grocery stores and check cashing stores for their financial needs.

Commenting on the award, Leonard Toenjes, CAE, president of AGCMO, said, “It is truly a great honor to be recognized for our work on diversity and workforce issues.  Our members have invested a great deal of time, money and effort into inclusion and much of that work over the years is coming to fruition. Our dedicated staff also has worked tirelessly on this important issue. I especially want to thank our construction industry partners as well as all the Missouri-based companies and government agencies that also have provided tremendous leadership on inclusion.  We are a stronger community because of everyone’s joint efforts.”


Front Row (left to right): Monica Bailey, McCarthy Building Companies; Steve Lewis, AGC of Missouri; Len Toenjes, AGC of Missouri; Marlene Davis, Alderwoman, City of St. Louis; Roslyn Croft, Tarlton Corporation.

Back Row (left to right): Earl Strauther, Jr., Paric Corporation; Precious Jackson, Alberici Constructors, Inc.; Steve Faust, icon Mechanical Construction & Engineering, LLC; Anthony Lancia, AGC of Missouri; Aaron Williams, Alberici Constructors, Inc.

The Associated General Contractors of Missouri is the leading voice of the construction industry in Missouri, representing over 500 commercial, industrial, heavy and highway contractors, industry partners and related firms in 110 counties throughout Missouri                                                      – 30 –

AGC of Missouri offices are located at:

1221 Jefferson Street                                                 6330 Knox Industrial Drive, Ste. 200
Jefferson City, Missouri 65109                                   St. Louis, Missouri  63139

Telephone:  573.636.3188                                          Telephone:  314.781.2356

Toll Free:  844-60-MOAGC

In Memoriam Jim Scmitt


Jim Schmitt

Schmitt, Jim, baptized into the hope of Christ’s resurrection, Monday, January 30, 2017. Loving father of Harrison, Hannah, Hayden and Graham Schmitt. Husband of Michelle Schmitt for 19 years. Brother of Cathy (Tom) Arnold. Uncle of Melissa and Mike Arnold; Wyatt, Rylee, Fynn, Dylann and Sydnee Collard; Braden Meyer. Dear great uncle of Adrianna, Samantha, Tyler, Jordan, Madison and Hunter. Our dear cousin and friend to many.

Services: Funeral Mass at Most Sacred Heart Catholic Church, Eureka, Friday, 12:00 p.m. Interment Calvary Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to Friends of Kids with Cancer or Make a Wish Foundation. Visitation at SCHRADER Funeral Home, EUREKA, Thursday 4- 8 p.m.