Training News

2007 International Apprentice Contest Showcases Skill – Pride – and Commitment to the Future

Journal: Issue 6 - 2007

Front row (kneeling), from left, Jason McMahon of 9 MI (1st Place – Cement), Stanislaw Radzik of 52 IL (2nd Place – PCC), Randal Leigh of 8 WI, WI ADC (1st Place – Stone), Matthew Beck of Local 1 MD/VA/DC (1st Place – Brick), Juan Alcala of 56 IL (1st Place – Plaster), Ignacio Sanchez of 18 CA (1st Place – Tile) and Greg Lasley of 4 IN/KY (1st Place – Terrazzo). Middle row, from left, Steve Powers of Local 9 MI (3rd Place – Brick), Jeronimo Esparza of Local 56 IL (2nd Place – Plaster), Jonathan Sprachmann of Local 5 OH, OADC (1st Place – PCC), IU President John J. Flynn, Secretary-Treasurer James Boland, and Executive Vice Presidents Gerard Scarano, Ken Lambert and Gerald O’Malley, Justin Tagliamonte of 5 NY (3rd Place – Cement), Jose Licea of 18 CA (2nd Place – Tile), Michael Ward of 5 OH, OADC (3rd Place – Marble), and Raymond Gudehus of 7 NY/NJ (2nd Place – Marble). Back row, from left, Lawrence “Dan” Heller of 16 OH, OADC (2nd Place – Cement), Benjamin Panaro of 7 NY/NJ (2nd Place – Terrazzo), Steve Brandonisio of 56 IL (3rd Place – Plaster), Steve Hasek, Jr. of 13 NV (1st Place – Marble), Jacob Amos of 1 OR (2nd Place – Brick), Kenneth Coates of 1 NL (3rd Place – Stone) and Lewis Radomile of 9 PA (3rd Place – Terrazzo). Not pictured, Eric Brichacek of 1 MN/ND (2nd Place – Stone), Jose Barreras of 3 CA (3rd Place – PCC) and Scott McMahon of 1 WA (3rd Place – Tile).

In September, the new John J. Flynn BAC/IMI International Training Center in Bowie, Maryland set the stage for the 2007 International Apprentice Contest hosted by BAC and the International Masonry Institute (IMI). After excelling at competitions at the Local and Regional levels, more than 100 apprentices from across the U.S. and Canada competed in eight craft categories for the right to be called “Best of the Best” in their craft.

The Contest was at the center of four days of dawn-to-dusk activity that also included the dedication of the Training Center with Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley, and a stellar Awards Banquet on September 23rd, where presidential candidate Senator Hillary Clinton accepted BAC’s endorsement and congratulated the contestants.

On the first day of the brick, cement, tile, stone, plaster, PCC, terrazzo and marble contests, contestants completed a written exam that tested their working knowledge of their respective crafts. The second day saw contestants lay out and construct their craft-specific mockups under the watchful eye of a knowledgeable team of experienced judges and hundreds of onlookers, including members of the BAC Executive Council, Labor-Management Craft Committees, and IMI Boards.

IU President John J. Flynn said of the event, “The Apprentice Contest shows how dedicated to their careers these young craftworkers are, and the new Training Center clearly demonstrates our Union’s and our contractors’ commitment to the future.”


First place winners received $5,000 cash, a $10,000 Savings Bond and a $500 BAC Tool Sales Gift Certificate. Second place winners were awarded $2,500 cash, a $5,000 Savings Bond and a $500 BAC Tool Sales Gift Certificate. Third place winners were given $2,000 cash, a $1,000 Savings Bond and a $250 BAC Tool Sales Gift Certificate.

To meet the contestants, visit

All Contest-related webcasts, photographs and information are still available at BAC’s website at – just select the “Contest” banner on the homepage.



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