ARLINGTON, Va. - The Construction Users Roundtable (CURT) and Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) announced the launch of a workplace improvement initiative, calling on the U.S. construction industry to continue its progress in promoting construction workforce training, recruitment, retention, and career development.

The mission of the CURT/ABC Workplace Initiative is "to add value to the merit shop sector of the construction industry by identifying critical issues that affect cost effectiveness and driving improvements that will benefit owners, merit shop contractors, and their workers."

"CURT and ABC members recognize that training, education, recruitment, and retention are essential to excellence in construction," said Greg Sizemore, CURT executive vice president.

"With this new initiative, ABC and CURT have made a commitment to providing leadership in addressing critical workforce issues so the industry will be assured of an adequate supply of first-class merit shop craftsmen and managers," said Kirk Pickerel, ABC president and chief executive officer.

The working group consists of approximately 18 leaders from CURT, ABC, and the merit shop contracting community. Mike Conley, engineering manager, DuPont, Wilmington, Del., is one of the co-chairpersons representing the owner community, while Gerald Sprentall, CSC Construction Manager, Intel Corp., Chandler, Ariz., is the other owner co-chair. Carole Bionda, vice president, Nova Group Inc., Napa, Calif., is the chairperson representing the merit shop contractors. Bionda is the immediate past chair of ABC.

Publication date: 06/27/2005