CIRCULATION MANAGER Astra J. Hudson/
Astra Benjamin-Hudson Consulting
ART DIREC TION Paul Philpott/Bono Tom Studio Inc.
ALTERNATIVE ENERGY & U TILI T Y BUSINESS Chuck Ross
ARC FLASH SAFE T Y Jim Phillips
BUSINESS William Atkinson
CODE Jim Dollard
CODE Michael Johnston
CODE Charles R. Miller
CODE Mark C. Ode
ESTIMATING Stephen Carr
FIBER OPTICS & CABLING Jim Hayes
FIRE/LIFE SAFE T Y S YS TEMS Wayne D. Moore
LIFE SAFETY SYSTEMS Thomas P. Hammerberg
LEGAL Gerard W. Ittig
LIGHTING Craig DiLouie
POWER QUALIT Y Richard P. Bingham
RESIDENTIAL David E. Shapiro
SAFETY Joe O’Connor & Tom O’Connor
SECURITY Deborah L. O’Mara
SERVICE/MAINTENANCE Andrew P. McCoy & Fred Sargent
TECHNOLOGY Jim Romeo
TOOLS Jeff Griffin
YOUR BUSINESS Denise Norberg-Johnson
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CHIEF EXECU TIVE OFFICER John M. Grau
SECRETARY-TREASURER Traci M. Walker
VICE PRESIDEN T AND COO Daniel G. Walter
EDITOR’S EYE BY TIMOTHY JOHNSON AND JULIE H. MAZUR
More Power to You
DID YOU SEE THE GREAT AMERICAN SOLAR ECLIPSE OF 2017?
So cool! At the ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR office just north of Washington, D.C.,
we wore our NASA-approved eclipse safety glasses to watch the moon block out
about 80 percent of the sun.
The eclipse was certainly a spectacle to behold, but such an event had
significant implications for U.S. productivity. California had to plan for a
4,200-megawatt solar-power outage during the event. On top of that, a projection by outplacement and executive coaching firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas
estimated that American businesses would lose $694 million in productivity as
workers stopped to gawk in awe.
But what kind of world do we live in if we can’t simply appreciate the Earth,
moon and sun aligning?
Soon we’ll follow the eclipse’s path back across the country to Seattle in the
other Washington for the NECA Show, our annual hub of productivity-generating
knowledge. In fact, there is a tiny chance you’re standing at our booth right now
reading this, while one of the editorial team is waiting patiently to answer any
questions you may have. If you’re at the show, please come say “hi” and grab a
bag (while supplies last). We are at booth No. 1141.
To the issue you now hold in your hands, we’ve crafted and assembled content to help you maintain your company as a productivity machine. And, as we
always have, we highlight the spectacle surrounding the NECA Show.
Susan Casey talked to four contractors working on a gamut of projects in the
Emerald City. “Shaping Seattle” on page 36 takes us to a multifamily high-rise,
a shopping center/hotel/residence, a medical center, and a Boeing plant. That
covers the bases pretty well.
Bill Atkinson introduces us to several ECs that are putting their money and
time where their mouths are in “Giving Back,” page 122. These contractors are
giving to their communities personally, professionally and financially, and they
seem to be enjoying it.
Two of our contributors address the labor shortage in the construction world.
On page 48, Claire Swedberg writes about the challenge of finding ways to maintain the existing workforce while bringing new people into the profession. Read
all about it in “Help Wanted.” Jeff Gavin offers an article about the value of trade
education in schools as one strategy in “Stemming the Tide,” page 54.
In “Safe From the Storm,” page 88, Jeff Griffin updates you on projects where
the cost of horizontal directional drilling has made undergrounding competitive. And, in “Start Your Engines,” page 72, by Chuck Ross, we examine the good
fortunes found in electric vehicles’ future.
Finally, we need to call attention to the cover. For this NECA Show issue, Julie
called on her father, Morrie Mazur, a journalist and photographer who captured
these images 55 years ago. Seattle, with a storied past as a booming logging town
and site of the 1962 World’s Fair, has emerged as a hub of advanced technological and software development. It also is the native home of this magazine’s
publisher, Andrea Klee. For many reasons, Seattle is exceptional, so we wanted
to give this cover special treatment.
We think we succeeded, and we hope you agree.