Painters & Allied Trades Reference Article
Tradeshow & Sign Crafts Local Union 831
Local Union 831
Local Union 831
Tradeshow and Sign Crafts
3360 Flair Drive, Suite 101
El Monte, CA 91731
Telephone: (626) 288-6115
Pete Zovanyi - Business Representative
Paul Vauchelet - Business Representative
Scott Cureton - Field Service Representative
David Henderson - Field Service Representative
Greg Clark, Liberty Harp, Anthony Lee, Ferris Millard, David Neiman,
Len Nunnally, Joseph Palmieri, Mitch Pelligrin, Dave Smith, Steve Schwartz
Local Union 831, Apprentriceship & Training Center
GARDEN GROVE TRAINING CENTER
Multi-Craft Training Center
11366 Markon Drive
Garden Grove, CA 92841
Tel: (714) 894-4094
TO: ALL LU 831 Tradeshow Installers
Re: Tradeshow Installers Agreement
From: Bob Lessin, Assistant Business Manager District Council 36 (Local 831, IUPAT)
PAINTERS & ALLIED TRADES DISTRICT COUNCIL #36
TRADESHOW & SIGN CRAFTS LOCAL 831
Tuesday March 31, 2009 -
IAM Machinist Local
5150 Kearny Mesa Road
San Diego, CA 92111
March 31, 2009
Wednesday - April 1, 2009 -
UFCW Local 324 Hall, Upstairs
8530 Stanton Ave.
Buena Park, CA 90622
Meets 4th Thursday, Every other month: 6:00 p.m., 8530 Stanton Ave, Buena Park, CA
Painters & Allied Trades January - March 2008 Trade Journal
See what it takes to be an IUPAT Tradeshow Worker
Journal Page 24 - FTI Current News
(IUPAT) International Union of Painters and Allied Trades, AFL-CIO, CLC
International Brotherhood of Painters & Allied Trades Union Local 831
Trade show and Convention Decorators from Southern California
Thanks to the IUPAT, the Show Always Goes On
The late 1940's and early 1950's marked the beginning of a new industry in
North America: The Trade Show. A venue where buyers and sellers gather to
showcase the latest products and services in their business. In those years,
the trade shows were smaller functions held in the ballrooms of hotels.
However, that changed when city leaders realized the potential for a larger
amount of revenue from show visitors and vendors alike if they increased
That realization was the dawn of convention centers. Today, over 600
convention centers dot the American landscape and each of them have the
capacity to generate millions of dollars for their home cities. This is
especially true if the city already happens to be a draw for tourism. For
example, a show at the Los Angeles Convention Center can spur over $80
million dollars of spending in the local economy - hotels, wages, restaurants,
cab rides and so on.
When you consider that there are over 13,000 shows a year in North America,
it's no wonder that the trade show business overall generates billions of
dollars in direct and indirect spending. According to the magazine Tradeshow
Week, the top 200 shows alone in 2006 drew an astounding 4.7 million
attendees. In fact, the trade show industry is so large that it has -
you guessed it - its own annual trade show.
To say the least. it's an impressive business and, as anyone who has visited
the larger shows would agree, that's true in more ways than one. Car shows
for example boast displays that often cost millions of dollars apiece.
To put that in perspective, the median price for a single family home in
the United States is $206,500. Clearly, if you have a booth or display
at a trade show it's all about being noticed in a sea of other exhibitors.
There's a lot of money and time at stake so it's crucial you stand out.
That's where the talents of the men and women of International Union of
Painters and Allied Trades comes in. The IUPAT has over 2,300 members who
work in the trade show industry in Southern California alone and they are
a group that goes through some of the most rigorous and detailed training
in our union.
"It's a four year apprenticeship that encompasses all aspects of the trade
show industry," said Ian Wright, training coordinator Training office for
District Council 36/Local Union 831. "Trade show basics, extruded metals,
portable exhibits, graphics, power tools, custom exhibit installation and
dismantle, ground rigging application and the list goes on and on."
Training: (714) 894-4094
One could say that the trade show workers have to be skilled in nearly all
the trades the IUPAT represents as they are responsible for building some
of the most complicated structures ever designed for an inside space. "Our
people are hanging everything from lights and signs to plasma screens and
automobiles," said Wright. "So obviously that means, from a safety standpoint,
that we've got to be well-trained and qualified to do what we're doing."
What does it take to be a trade show worker? Wright explained that before
someone is even considered to be admitted into the apprenticeship program,
he or she has to be tested - mentally and physically.
"We are erecting standalone structures that require a firm grasp on all the
basics of construction," Wright explained. Aside from being tested on the tools
they would be using every day, potential apprentices first take a ninth grade
level math test. That means geometry, algebra and even physics.
A grasp of math and physics makes sense when you consider that this person may
one day be responsible for hanging a truck from a convention hall ceiling without
it coming back down unexpectedly. However, one might wonder, why the physical
test? It's not a typical construction site, it's usually indoors, how physically
challenging can it be? According to Wright, it can be very hard on the body.
"It isn't Broadway, but it is show business," explained Cliff Germano, training
director for the Florida Finishing Trades Institute in District Council 78. "And
the show must always go on, and on time." District Council 78 represents over
400 trade show workers.
"The schedule of a trade show worker is extremely demanding," said Wright. "There
are no delays in the trade show circuit. Too many people are coming from all over
the United States, even the world, and that event will open on the day it's
scheduled to start - period. That means you have to get the project done on time, no
excuses. I tell my new apprentices who have a job coming up to take a fresh set
of clothes with them. The days will be long and it's all work." Wright recalled.
how, on a recent job, his people worked 104 hours in one week. Those are long days
when you consider that there are 168 hours total in one week.
"We must complete a project in a time frame that is not realistic in most other
industries," said Martin Cymbal, vice president and general manager for the
Western Region operations of Freeman. His company is a trade show industry
leader and has been in business since 1927 when they started doing exhibits for
county and state fairs. Today they have offices in 41 cities in the United
States and Canada. "We do not miss a deadline. Our workers must be able to
adapt to logistics that change within a moment's notice and ready to work in
all environments." Trade shows are held year-round and workers may arrive at a
show thinking that they will be unloading or loading a truck under cover or
inside and instead be forced to do their work in rain, snow or heat.
And it's not just long hours and challenging working conditions; it can also
be long distances. Anyone who has been to a convention center knows just
how big they can be. Wright said that some of the workers wear a pedometer
on the job and report that they often walk 12 to 15 miles a day.
That's why Wright and his staff implemented a state-of-the-art test in 2007
to measure any physical limitations a candidate for apprenticeship in the
trade show craft might have. "It's called isokinetic testing and it is
incredibly accurate in measuring the joint, shoulder and back strength of an
individual taking the test," said Wright. "We don't want someone getting hurt
on the job and this test goes a long way toward telling us if an individual
physically has what it takes to work on the trade show circuit." The IUPAT
is the only apprenticeship program in the country utilizing this test. Wright
is confident that, given some time, the data will show that IUPAT workers
will have suffered fewer injuries on the job because of it.
"Our people have to be crafts men and women who can think on their feet,"
added Germano. "If something comes in damaged, they have to be able to make it
work, make it pretty and make it safe. There's no other choice."
Despite the rigors of the job, Wright was quick to point out that the
opportunities are incredible for someone looking for a good career. "Trade
shows, for the most part, are recession proof," Wright said. "There will always
be a need for companies and customers to come together and meet face-to-face.
That means there will always be a need for men and women of our skill and talent to
build an impressive exhibit."
In fact, a number of our members have traveled around the world because of their
skills. "There are some complex exhibits to build these days and when a company finds
someone who can be counted on to get the job done the way they want it done, they'll
often take that person on the road with them around the country and even the world,"
Wright said. "These companies have a lot invested in these exhibits and it's worth
it to them to bring someone along to make certain things are done right."
The same is true for exhibitors visiting Southern California and that's why Wright
makes it a requirement for apprentices to train in customer service. "If
exhibitors come here and they don't like how they were treated or they're
unhappy at how the booths and displays came together, then they may not make this
trip again," explained Wright. "That doesn't just affect us, but it affects
everybody who supports a show like this in the city. They deal with us face-to-face
and we owe it to our employees and everyone else who relies upon this business
in the city to treat our customers right."
Cymbal explained that the ideal trade show worker has a skill-set consisting of
three components - thorough skills training, safety training and an understanding
of the importance of customer service. "That is extremely important. When a customer
is using our labor, they want to know they're getting value for their money. If
they don't get that satisfaction, they move on to someone else who can give it to
How serious is Wright about customer service in his training program? One rule he
has for his apprentices is that when they are on the job and a customer passes
by within ten feet, that apprentices must give the customer at least a nod and a
smile. If the customer is within five feet, the apprentice must also wish them a
good morning or afternoon. "I tell our apprentices that this is more than just
a job in a trade," said Wright. "I explain to them that they are also ambassadors
to our city."
The trade show workers of the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades
represents some of the most talented and skilled workers in the labor movement.
Because of their hard work, the show will always go on.
(EACA) Exhibitor Appointed Contractor Association (NEWSLETTER)
"The Southern California Decorators Local Union 831 tradeshow installers training
program has set an industry standard second to none. With their continual programs
in power tool safety, scaffolding/ladders, fall protection, first aid, forklift,
electrical, genie lift use and many more, they have improved the quality of our
Southern California Labor force tremendously." Mike Kadow, President So. Calif.
Chapter of EACA (Renaissance Management).
Founded in 1989, Renaissance Management Inc. A labor management Company, has
grown into an industry leader in labor management services for trade shows,
conventions and private events across North America.
2001 - Sonny Ciferni was named to the newly created position of Chief Executive
Officer of Renaissance Management Inc., formerly Vice President of Renaissance,
Sonny Ciferni has spent 21 years in the I&D industry and is a Founding Partner
of the company.
2003 - Steve Johnson is President of Renaissance Management Inc.
Steven Johnson, President, Renaissance Management Inc., Stone Mountain, Ga.
(EAC) I&D Exhibitor-Appointed Contractor
The EAC independent contractor makes their living from offering
customized service and building good business relationships.
Renaissance Management Inc. (Headquarters)
2300 West Park Place Blvd.
Stone Mountain, GA 30087
The Beginnning of I & D (Install and Dismantle Services) Later named Nth Degree
Tony Amodeo, Pat Alaqua and Jack McEntee Founded I&D, Inc. in 1979,
Leading providers of Labor Services. This Company was later named (Nth Degree).
April 2001 - Lake Capital purchases Nth Degree
Lake Capital, a Chicago- and London-based private investment firm that
specializes in building high-quality, service-based companies into premier
global enterprises, today announced the acquisition of Nth Degree, Inc.,
one of the nation's leading face-to-face marketing companies. Lake Capital
has commited $150 million in equity in an initiative to acquire Nth Degree
and aggressively expand the company's strategic and international capabilities.
Nth Degree has twenty-three domestic offices, including all major convention
cities, two offices in Germany, a presence in Brazil, and strategic partnerships
in Mexico, the United Kingdom, Australia, and Asia.
Nth Degree co-founder Jack McEntee has joined the board of directors of
(2001) Nth Degree Global, LLC, while the company's president, Samuel Lacey,
and Nth Degree's existing executive team will continue to manage the operations
of Nth Degree. McEntee and co-founder Pat Alacqua have both invested in the new
John Yohe, President and Chief Financial Officer at Nth Degree,
a global event management company based in Stone Mountain, GA. with
offices in 20 of the biggest convention cities in North America and 3
Scott Bennett is Executive Vice President, Sales & Marketing at Nth Degree
Nth Degree Tradeshow Links
Nth Degree, Inc. (Headquarters)
1492 Kelton Drive
Stone Mountain, GA 30083
Eagle Management Group
Eagle Management - Labor Management
Eagle Management Group, Inc. was founded in 1987 as an exhibitor appointed
contractor, dedicated to providing clients with superior labor management
resources. Eagle Management Group, Inc. began as a Northeast regional contractor,
and through strategic planning has expanded it's operations to include 35 base
cities of operation throughout the United States. Additionally through our
international service partner network, we have become a premier global labor
Since it's inception, Eagle Management Group, Inc. has focused on providing
skilled labor and labor resource management for trade show installations and
dismantles, corporate events, road tours, permananent and museum installations.
Our Mission: Eagle Management Group, Inc. is a Client-defined company committed
to:"Provide the best quality people, service and performance."
Eagle Management Group
Steve Matranga (President)
Joe Matranga (CEO - Owner)
Eagle Management Group (Headquarters)
650 Grove Road, Suite 105
Paulsboro, NJ 08066
Freeman Decorating Services
Donald Shaw "Buck" Freeman
• Instrumental in founding EDPA and ESCA.
• Charter Inductee of the Convention Liaison Council Hall of Leaders
• Credited with the “systemization” of exhibit servicing and the development
of one of our industry’s first nationwide trade show servicing companies.
1927 Forms Freeman Decorating Company in Des Moines, Iowa
1950 Opens second office in Dallas, TX
1961 Purchases Sullivan Transfer
1967 Forms Freeman Design Display company
1975 AVW Audio Visual becomes part of Freeman Companies
1977 Donald Freeman Passes away, leaving behind company with 6 branch offices,
200 employees and $23 million in sales.
1997 Freeman Air, a trade show air freight company, joins the family - and
later expands in 1999 to become a full-service global exhibit transportation
2000 Stage Rigging Inc. becomes part of the Freeman family, offering
theatrical, exhibit and event rigging.
2002 Freeman celebrates 75 years in business.
2006 With offices in 27 cities across North America, Freeman leads by
producing world-class events - and by reinventing the industry it
helped to create.
Freeman Decorating Services (Headquarters)
Donald S. Freeman Jr. [Chairman & CEO]
8801 Ambassador Row
(GES) Greyhound Exposition Services - A History Of Excellence
GES The Beginning (Founded in 1939) Original Name: Manncraft
The history of GES includes many founding fathers of the exhibition and
events industry. The company dates back to 1939, when Chuck and Leon Manne
founded Manncraft in Kansas City specializing in signs, window trimmings
and small displays. During World War II, Ben Rittmaster joined Manncraft
as a partner, later becoming its first president. During the 50s and 60s,
Manncraft added booth stock as part of its new Exhibitor Service Division
and expanded by opening offices in Omaha, Miami, Tampa, Atlanta and New Orleans.
In 1969, The Greyhound Corporation purchased Manncraft and growth through
acquisitions began. In the early 70s, offices were opened in Los Angeles,
San Francisco, Chicago and San Diego through acquisition and organic growth.
In 1973, Greyhound acquired Las Vegas Convention Services Company, and the
stronghold in Las Vegas began.
In 1979, Manncraft changed its name to Greyhound Exposition Services and
GES was born. By 1981, Nort Rittmaster, Ben’s son, was named president and
CEO of GES.
Dramatic Growth in the 90s
GES expanded into the Pacific Northwest in 1991 through acquisitions in
Seattle and Portland. By the end of 1992, GES was headquartered in Las Vegas
with offices in most major west coast cities. At this point the company had
500 full-time employees.
Recognizing the projected growth of the exhibition industry, GES decided
to establish nationwide service. In May 1993, GES made the largest acquisition
in its history, by purchasing United Exposition Service Company whose city
operations included virtually every major convention market east of the
With the United Expo acquisition, Greyhound Exposition Services changed its
name to GES Exposition Services to reflect "The New GES." In August 1993,
Nort Rittmaster was promoted to chairman and chief executive officer for GES.
In October 1993, GES acquired Andrews, Bartlett & Associates a major regional
contractor based in Hudson, Ohio and in November of the same year acquired
Gelco Convention Services, based in Miami, enhancing the Orlando operation.
During early 1995, GES expanded into Canada through the acquisition of Panex
Show Services and Stampede Display and Convention Services, gaining offices
in Toronto, Calgary and Edmonton. By June of that year, Concept Convention
Service had joined the GES family, with offices in Phoenix, Tucson and
GES acquired ESR Exposition Services in May 1998, one of New York City's
leading exhibition and event contractors. That same year in June, GES also
acquired Puliz of Utah, Inc., a noted exhibition and corporate events
company with locations in Reno and Salt Lake City.
In October 1998, Panex, Canada's largest exhibition and event-marketing
company changed its name to GES CANADA Exposition Services Limited.
New Century Brings New Leadership and Further Growth
January 2000 brought the appointment of Paul Dykstra as president and
chief executive officer of GES. Dykstra joined GES after 15 years with
sister company, Travelers Express where he was executive vice president
of Retail Payment Products.
At the end of 2002, GES opened a new flagship operation in Las Vegas.
Located on 54 acres of land, the facility provides state of the art
production capabilities for its highly skilled employees.
In 2003, GES’ National ServicenterSM relocated to a 10,600 square foot
cutting-edge facility located within GES’ Las Vegas flagship operations.
The move allowed GES to provide even greater levels of service to its
exhibitors nationwide and operates during all North American business hours.
GES acquired Pro Show Services, a leading convention services contracto
based in Edmonton, Alberta in May 2004. The purchase allowed GES CANADA
to complement its service offerings in Western Canada.
On January 1, 2006, Dykstra left GES to head its parent-company Viad, and
Kevin Rabbitt was appointed president and chief executive officer.
In February 2007, GES acquired Melville Exhibition and Event Services,
the largest exhibition contractor in the United Kingdom, and exhibition
registration and database services company CTS, forming the GES Worldwide
Network. Melville is based on site at Birmingham’s National Exhibition
Centre – The NEC, ExCeL in London, GMEX in Manchester, and near the Scottish
Exhibition and Conference Centre in Glasgow. Annually, Melville serves
30,000 exhibitors and provides shell scheme (similar to a show organizer
package) for 300 events.
In June 2007, GES CANADA acquired Poitras Exposition Services, the largest
exhibition services company in Quebec City. The acquisition strengthens
GES CANADA’s leading market position throughout Canada.
In November 2007, GES further solidified its commitment to providing
industry-leading, value-added exhibition and event consultation with
the acquisition of the ethnoMETRICS business, a leading consulting company
focused on bringing retail store behavioral research to the exhibition floor.
Today, GES Exposition Services serves more than 3,000 events annually
to meet the growing needs of the industry.
GES Exposition Services (Headquarters)
Paul B. Dykstra (Chief Operating Officer - Viad Corp)
Kevin M. Rabbitt (Chief Executive Officer of GES Exposition Services, Inc.)
950 Grier Drive
Las Vegas, NV 89119
District Council #36 Local 831, Tradeshow and Sign Crafts Union
3360 Flair Drive, Suite 101
El Monte, CA 91731
Our union, like many modern labor unions, was founded in the 19th century
to set standards for uniform compensation in the trades and provide a community
for workers to share ideas and solve problems. The Brotherhood of Painters and
Decorators of America was organized formally in 1887. Within a year, the union
boasted a membership of over 7,000 tradesmen and more than 100 local unions. These
trade unionists soon realized the power that they had together, rather than staying
separate and facing their problems alone. Backed by a growing centralized union,
these dedicated organizers won victories over oppressive working conditions that
were once thought unchangeable when the union won a half-holiday on Saturday for
most of its members. By 1918, the Painters' union successfully established the
eight-hour day and a five-day workweek.
The world plunged into the Great Depression in 1929. Membership in the union fell
from 115,000 to approximately 60,000. The American public called for a change in
government by electing Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1932. FDR’s New Deal legislation
included a number of important laws recognizing workers’ rights and importance of
The contributions of IUPAT members in World War II are a particular highlight in
our history. Many of the 145,000 union members worked on government projects during
the war and their productivity was unsurpassed. More than 24,000 members of our
union served in the armed forces, and hundreds made the ultimate sacrifice for our
During the turbulent 1960s, our union became more deeply involved with politics.
Union leaders worked with elected officials in creating landmark legislation like
the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the legislation that created Medicare and Medicaid
programs, and the creation of the Department of Housing and Urban Development.
The union was also involved with the campaign to raise the federal minimum wage.
In 1969, the General Convention came out with the union’s first safety manual,
"Play It Safe." Union members were also significantly involved role in passing
the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, which created important safeguards
for all workers.
Most labor unions suffered during the 1980s with an anti-union atmosphere prevalent
in the United States. Membership in labor unions fell across the board.
In recent years, IUPAT has recharged its batteries and begun an aggressive program
of organizing workers and educating members about everything from workplace safety
to new technology and techniques to use on the job. IUPAT has stepped up its efforts
to help working families by becoming active in the political arena. And our union
continues to reach out to communities and people in need.
Official Stats of Disrict 36
District Coucil 36 Painters, Drywall Finishers, Glazers, Floorlayers
and Tradeshow & Signcraft
District Council 36, Business Manager, Grant Mitchell
The International Union of Painters and Allied Trades, District Council 36,
is a labor union of more than 11,000 men and women in Southern California.
The members work in the finishing trades and include Painters, Drywall Finishers,
Glaziers, Floorlayers, and Tradeshow & Signcraft workers.
The International Union of Painters and Allied Trades has been a leading
organization within the building and construction industry since 1887.
Since being chartered in 1908, District Council 36 has been committed to
the membership ranks, making certain they are paid fair wages and receive
the medical, vacation, and retirement benefits to which they are entitled.
District Council 36 provides the contractors with highly trained, skilled,
and safety-conscious workers who are prepared to meet the challenges of
SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA PAINTERS & ALLIED TRADE DISTRICT COUNCIL NO. 36
Painters and Allied Trades District Council 36
Tradeshow & Signcraft
Tradeshow & Signcraft Training
Local Union 831 Tradeshow & Signcrafts Officers
Painters & Allied Trades (Multi-Crafts Union) - Never Give Up! (Video)
Southern California Convention Centers
Los Angeles Convention Center
Los Angeles Convention Center Calendar of Events
Anaheim Convention Center
Anaheim C.C. Calander of Events
Long Beach Convention Center
Long Beach Convention Center Calendar of Events
San Diego Convention Center
San Diego Convention Center Calendar of Events
EXHIBIT INSTALLER COMPANIES