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Women on the Rise Awards

Women on the Rise award winners: Katie Kuchta, Isis Harris, Heather Mayther, and Carly Rush

On Thursday November 16, 2017 the whole country celebrated Women in Apprenticeship Day. This day is part of National Apprenticeship Week which was started during President Obama’s administration in 2015 as a call to action to increase the use of Registered apprenticeship to develop the skills of our nation’s workers and expand the talent pipeline available to U.S. Industries.

Heather Mayther, Left, with Amber McCoy, Representative Pacific Northwest Region Carpenters Institute

Aida Arranda, Apprenticeship Coordinator Oregon & S. Idaho Laborers with Katie Kuchta, and Dan Clark, General Superintendent, Skanska

While many organizations across the U.S. celebrated this year, Oregon Tradeswomen did something truly special. This year, we launched our 1st annual, “Woman on the Rise,” awards dinner. We asked four of our closest union apprenticeship partners in the Portland area to nominate four spectacular women apprentices in their program. These women are leaders, supporters of their community, and have shown excellence in their trade.

Kevin Roth, Training Coordinator Sheet Metal Institute, with Carly Rush

Carly Rush receives a hug from her proud daughter

In honor of these four award winners, Oregon Tradeswomen hosted a several course meal with the women, their friends, families, and apprenticeship coordinators to celebrate their achievements. Each apprenticeship representative spoke about their honoree with presentations and custom videos. We were also joined by Steve Simms from the state of Oregon’s Office of Apprenticeship, who gave a moving speech about the importance moving beyond just tolerance of women in the trades, to truly accepting women into these non-traditional fields.

Keith Edwards, IBEW Local 48 Member, Isis Harris, Pat Daniels of Constructing Hope, and Donna Hammond, IBEW Local 48 Member

Donna Hammond is ready to surprise Isis Harris with a bouquet of flowers

The quote of the night belongs to Donna Hammond from IBEW Local 48 who said,

“There is going to be hard work at every job, but do you want to do it for minimum wage or thirty-five dollars an hour?”

Special thanks to Oregon Tradeswomen staff member, Emma Brennan, who handmade toolboxes foe each of the award winners!

Posted on by OTI Staff in Apprentice, Career Path, Community Partners, Events | Leave a comment

IBEW Local 48 Awards Connie Ashbrook With Honorary Membership

Oregon Tradeswomen founding Director,  Connie Ashbrook, was awarded with an honorary membership by IBEW Local 48 Business Manager Gary Young and President Wayne Chow.

This prestigious award is historic – it is the first time in the Local’s 106-year history they have recognized someone who is not a member! President Chow stated that the Local sought this honorary membership for Connie because of her tremendous contributions to promoting equity for women in the trades, and clearing the path for women to become leaders in their unions, in their communities, and in the construction industry.

Congratulations on this well-deserved recognition, Connie!


Posted on by OTI Staff in About Oregon Tradeswomen, Events | Leave a comment

Guest Blog: Apparatus Contractor Services

We are so excited to announce Apparatus Contractor Services, LLC to the women of our contracting and trades industry! Apparatus is a suite of back office services for small contracting companies, general contractors, independent and subcontractors, and tradeswomen (and men!).

Through months of preparation, we’ve put together three month-to-month subscription-based programs. Each one offers critical business services including administrative assistance, accounting, payroll, marketing, and more. We’re the first of our kind in the Portland area: a comprehensive digital support solution for contractors.  We offer our subscription services to contractors locally and nationally.

Apparatus is the end-result of a careful examination of the challenges faced by growing contracting companies. Companies made of, or ran by, people just like you!  We believe that the three programs we offer will be a testament to Apparatus’ skill for process and service design. Most importantly, our willingness and determination to really understand the needs of our future contractor clients.

As the marketing manager, I was witness to the challenges we faced building Apparatus (building a business is hard work!). We wanted to resist the temptation to design the services we thought we should offer.  Instead, we listened carefully to what we heard contractors tell us they need. We incorporated this feedback until we felt we had a product that would really help people as they start, grow, and scale their contracting businesses.

Here is a brief overview of the services each program provides:


  • Apparatus Start! Program™ is intended to set and reinforce your business’s foundation through entity formation assistance, compliance management, document management, and full-service accounting and payroll.
  • Apparatus Grow! Program™ incorporates all the features of Start! and adds business identity and branding as well as opportunities to enhance the professionalism of a contracting business through estimates and full proposals.
  • Apparatus Scale! Program™ incorporates all the features of Start! and Grow! and adds an extensive suite of marketing and client management tools and services.


We also offer a variety of a la carte services available alongside each service package. We built these options out to encompass a broader range of need form our clients. The options include, but are not limited to, LLC formation assistance, contractor licensing assistance, and notices of right to a lien. As we grow, we look forward to evolving to meet the needs of our contractor client base.

Beyond unveiling our company, we’re also on a mission to get to know our contracting community better. We’re proud members of the Master Builders Association of Seattle, The Home Builders Associate of Portland and of course, Oregon Tradeswomen, Inc.! I love hearing from local contractors and encourage any woman, either aspiring in her career or established, to reach out and start a conversation.


Until next time!


Erin Lehmann, Marketing Manager

Apparatus Contractor Services, LLC

[email protected]



About Apparatus Contractor Services, LLC:   Apparatus Contractor Services, LLC was designed to power the back offices of small and large subcontractors and general contractors.  Their back office services are tailored to the unique needs of contracting companies seeking to start, grow, and scale to their true potential.



Posted on by OTI Staff in Guest Blog | Leave a comment

3934 NE Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. #101  |  Portland, Oregon 97212  |   phone: 503.335.8200  |  fax: 503.249.0445

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