GBA Logo horizontal Facebook LinkedIn Email Pinterest Twitter Instagram YouTube Icon Navigation Search Icon Main Search Icon Video Play Icon Plus Icon Minus Icon Picture icon Hamburger Icon Close Icon Sorted
BS* + Beer

The BS* + Beer Show: Finding (or Making) Skilled Tradespeople

A roundtable discussion on ways to make the building industry an attractive career path

Builder and educator Mike Guertin sharing his skill set with students from the Warwick Area Career and Technical Center. Photo courtesy of Mike Guertin.

This episode of the BS* + Beer Show features guests Kate Stephenson, Bob Kovacs, and Heather Thompson talking about recruiting people into the trades. Bob believes exposing young people to trade professionals is key to developing the next-generation workforce. Kate feels adult training and certification programs provide a path for people looking to make a career change. Heather is a proponent of in-house trainings. There is discussion around leveraging the prohibitive cost of college to make the trades a viable alternative. The hiring process is considered as a possible deterrent for women entering the field, which leads to talk about gender equity in the workplace. Other topics include: the potential of unions to improve retention rates; the power of media communications to draw diverse talent; the positioning of building science to elevate trade skills; and the sourcing of funding based on green investment. The conversation rounds many corners and a number of inspired ideas come to the surface.

Kate also shares a number of pertinent resources, including:


Vermont Works for Women   

MIT Living Wage Calculator  

Breaking Down Gender Bias: A Toolkit for Construction Business Owners

10 Steps to Hiring

NAWIC Maine chapter

Move Over Bob

Enjoy the show!

Join us on Thursday, October 29, from 6 to 7:30 p.m. EST, when we welcome Carl Seville (a.k.a. the Green Building Curmudgeon) and Michael Anschel to discuss a Halloween-inspired topic: scary building failures. There are sure to be some jaw-droppers that will spark conversation in multiple directions. Plus, we’ve all agreed to be in costumes, which should add a little flavor to the show. 

Guest bios

Carl Seville is principal of SKCollaborative. He has over 30 years of experience in renovation and home construction.  He owned and operated SawHorse, Inc, one of the largest design/build renovation firms in Atlanta for over 25 years. Carl is a Green Globes professional, a HERS rater, an NGBS Master Verifier, a LEED Green Rater, and an EarthCraft and Enterprise Green Communities Technical Advisor, and holds the LEED AP Homes designation. He has served on the boards of directors of the Greater Atlanta Homebuilders Association and the Atlanta chapter of NARI, the Green Building Subcommittee and the Green Building Education Curriculum Committee of NAHB, NARI’s Green Remodeling Education Committee, the Georgia Governor’s Energy Policy Council, the USGBC Residential Green Building Advocate for Atlanta, and as a member of the board of the Atlanta Branch of the USGBC.

He has contributed to Multifamily Executive, Remodeling Professional Remodeler, Builder, Home Energy, and numerous other trade and consumer publications.  He is a contributing editor for, and is a co-author of Green Building, Principles and Practices in Residential Construction, the first college textbook on residential green building, the USGBC/ASID ReGreen residential green remodeling guidelines and the LEED for Homes Reference Guide.

He is a graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) where he studied architecture, fine arts, and design.

Michael Anschel is heavily involved in the Green Building movement. He led the Green Remodeling Group in the development of MN GreenStar Certified Green Homes and Remodeling, considered by some to be the most progressive and rigorous green residential building standard in the US. After serving as interim director, he works to facilitate the adoption and incorporation of Green building techniques into the entire Residential construction industry.

Michael is also the owner and principal of Otogawa-Anschel Design-Build, L.L.C., a nationally recognized award-winning design-build firm that focuses on older residential homes. Otogawa-Anschel Design-Build has been dedicated to Green building for over a decade. They were the recipient of the first National Green Remodeling Chrysalis Award, and the first MN COTY Award for sustainable remodeling.

Michael has served on the Board of Directors for NARI of MN and the City of Lakes Rotary. He is a Contributor to and has been featured in the Journal of Light Construction, Remodeling, Qualified Remodeler, Upscale Remodeling, Luxury Renovation, Midwest Home, Minneapolis/St. Paul Magazine, City South, Plymouth, Minnetonka and Edina Magazines, HomeTime, and the Star Tribune. You can read Michael’s green blog for Remodeling magazine here.

A Minneapolis native, he has lived, studied and worked in China and Japan. His spare time is spent outdoors climbing small mountains, cooking, and reading.

Use this link to register for The BS* + Beer Show

BS* + Beer Book Club

Because the hosts of the BS* + Beer Show all love to read, we thought we would celebrate the authors in our industry by adding a book club to the show every few months. We’ll announce the book, give you a few months to get it and read it, and conclude with a BS* + Beer Show episode where we will invite the author to join us, present, and take questions.

We have selected our second book: Healthy Buildings: How Indoor Spaces Drive Performance and Productivity by Joseph G. Allen and John D. Macomber

We hope you will pick up a copy and join the discussion on Thursday, December 17, from 6 to 7:30 pm.


-You can contact Kiley Jacques at [email protected].

One Comment

  1. JC72 | | #1

    Interesting discussion. Unfortunately as was mentioned the cyclical nature of residential construction is a primary deterrent for people choosing the field. The skillset doesn't demand a wage which is high enough for the individual to earn a living while simultaneously being able to save for the inevitable downturn. It's why for example that the industry has a heavy reliance on sub-contractors and why individuals would rather develop a skillset which can be applied in both residential and commercial construction (ex, Electrician, Plumbing, HVAC)..

Log in or create an account to post a comment.



Recent Questions and Replies

  • |
  • |
  • |
  • |