ST. LOUIS — Marty McClimens, a plumber and instructor for the United Association Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 562 here, has been named the winner of the Irwin Industrial Tool Co./Rebuilding Together Tradesman of the Year Award.
The national award was created to honor the contributions of professional tradesmen who volunteer their time and talents to support Rebuilding Together-sponsored home maintenance and remodeling projects for low-income homeowners. As grand-prize winner, McClimens attended Super Bowl XXXVIII as a guest of Irwin.
Rebuilding Together (formerly Christmas in April) sponsors remodeling and renovation projects for more than 8,000 homes and community centers nationwide each year, with professional tradesmen such as McClimens directing the work of volunteers. McClimens said shortly after he became involved with Rebuilding Together that he recognized an opportunity for unions and other associations of skilled tradesmen to join forces for the good of the community.
“I am very proud of the way the entire plumbing industry in St. Louis has gotten behind Rebuilding Together —the plumbers, supply houses and inspectors,” McClimens said. “What we have accomplished has been done as a group, as an entire industry.”
McClimens has volunteered for the St. Louis affiliate of Rebuilding Together for seven years, contributing more than 50 hours each year to coordinate involvement of the plumbing and pipefitting union in area home maintenance projects. His efforts have increased participation in St. Louis affiliate projects from a handful of general contractors and handymen seven years ago to more than 200 professional plumbers in 2003.
McClimens has even integrated Rebuilding Together into his apprenticeship training programs, helping young plumbers learn more about renovation and repair work while at the same time teaching them the importance of contributing to the community.
The IRWIN/Rebuilding Together Tradesman of the Year award competition began in mid-December 2003 when 250 Rebuilding Together affiliates were asked to nominate individuals for the award. McClimens’ selection was based on three primary criteria — overall service to a local affiliate, contribution to the success of the affiliate and leadership role.
Lynne Rajani, executive director of the local affiliate, nominated McClimens for the award.
Founded in 1988, Rebuilding Together has 252 affiliates and serves 955 cities and towns throughout the United States. For more information, visit www.rebuildingtogether.org.