The Building Tradesman Newspaper

Friday, April 27, 2001

GARDE Award honors construction industry diversity

By The Building Tradesman

Seven finalists have been placed in competition for the Sixth Annual Gender and Race Diversification Excellence (GARDE) Awards sponsored by the Great Lakes Construction Alliance.

The GARDE Award recognizes individuals and organizations who have done the most to promote racial and gender diversity in the construction workforce. The award will be presented May 1 at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History in Detroit with the ceremony starting at 4:30 p.m. followed by a reception.

Nominees were judged on their success in increasing the numbers of minorities and women in the organized construction labor workforce. To be considered for the award, nominees must have achieved and sufficiently documented a significant, proven success while promoting good construction practices.

The seven finalists include:

  • Alberici University, with their free training class series. Held monthly at the Michigan offices of Alberici, the classes provide minority and women-owned business enterprises with inside knowledge of a major prime contractors' operations.
  • Detroit Water Constructor, an 11-member joint venture team at Water Works Park II that encourages young people to pursue careers in the water and construction industries.
  • Ford Motor Co. Construction, Utilities and Building Services (CUBS Council), part of the automaker's efforts to achieve higher levels of outsourcing to minority and women-owned businesses.
  • Pace Mechanical Services, for pursuing an aggressive policy to recruit and promote minorities and women to key posts in its management. The firm has also worked hard to diversify its workforce through the development of a strategic subcontractor base.
  • Don Shalibo, senior vice president, Barton Malow Co. has championed opportunities for minority youth, women and minority companies, and has served as a board member on committees too numerous to mention.
  • Shorebank's Contractor Equity Program, launched in January 2000, is the bank's traditional acquisition and rehabilitation program. It targets minority contractors to enable them to develop properties for resale in an area on the east side of Detroit.
  • Youthbuild Detroit is a program of Young Detroit Builders and is a GED and construction training program for 18-24-year-old Detroiters.