Lisa Davis was well on her way to becoming “Dr. Davis” after graduating from the University of California with a bachelor’s in biology. Then a sheet metal worker apprenticeship at Local 16 in Portland, Oregon, changed her career course.

Completing a five-year apprenticeship and three-year service technician program, Davis is now a true sheet metal worker. She organized and started a Diversity Committee and mentoring program at Local 16 and studied to become a full-time instructor in the service apprenticeship and building trades apprenticeship programs.

“She helped the young people coming through the JATC become really well-rounded individuals,” says James Page, an administrator at the International Training Institute (ITI), the education arm of the unionized sheet metal, air conditioning and welding industry. “Her commitment to the students at Local 16 extended beyond just teaching them the skills they need to become great sheet metal workers; she taught them about inclusion and diversity, and she mentored them to help them become the best versions of themselves.”

Next, Davis is stepping into a national role as an ITI field representative, a position she is “honored and excited” to take on in working with local training centers as a “resource for locals who are working to enrich their training programs — specifically those focused on service education.”

“We are lucky to have Lisa joining our staff, and I think our JATCs will really benefit from her knowledge as an instructor and from her amazing energy,” says Page.

The ITI is responsible for curriculum and training, free of charge, to more than 14,000 apprentices and thousands more journey people across the United States and Canada. SMART (the International Association of Sheet Metal Air, Rail and Transportation Workers) and the Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning Contractors’ National Association (SMACNA) jointly sponsor the institute.

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