Roofing apprentices honored for superior skills

Three area roofing apprentices from Local 71 can rightfully say they possess some of the best construction skills in a quad-state region by winning a skills competition recently held in Toledo.

Sponsored by the Mid-States District Council of Roofers, apprentices from more than 30 locals from Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York and West Virginia competed for the honor. Criteria included finishing on time and with high quality work.

Jeff Gordon won second place in the first-year apprenticeship category; Michael Maneer took first place in the second-year apprenticeship category; and James Fortune won second place in the third-year apprenticeship round.

“These fine young gentlemen showed what a high level of skill and professionalism union roofers bring to projects in the Youngstown area,” said Carlo Ponzio, business representative from Local 71.

The roofing apprenticeship program is a three-year commitment. Instructor Gene Bogden said first year apprentices concentrate mostly on safety and fundamentals. Second year work involves more roofing, hot tar and single ply training, and third year apprentices hone their skills in detail work, shingles and flat roof. All apprentices are also mandated to become proficient in CPR and first aid.

Photo Caption: Apprenticeship winners and Local 71 staff: Sitting is James Fortune and Jeff Gordon. Standing (from left to right) is Gene Bogden, Michael Maneer, Thomas Booth, and Carlo Ponzio