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Industry-Veteran Drove Tremendous Growth Throughout the Midwest

Union, IL, October 10, 2018INTREN is proud to announce that Regional Vice President of Midwest Operations, Dennis Bednarski, has been promoted to Senior Vice President of Electrical Operations, effective immediately.

"Dennis has been instrumental in driving tremendous growth throughout the Midwest region, while continuing to improve operational performance and service levels for our customers," said INTREN CEO Kelly Tomblin. "His leadership ability has expanded his region by 300%, both geographically and in depth of services."

Since joining INTREN in October of 2015, Bednarski managed the Midwest region, which served utility customers in Ohio, Wisconsin, Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Iowa and Michigan. reporting to Dennis will be Regional Vice President Sean Hughes, Jason Combs and Andy Carmean.

"Dennis' ability to align his team on training, safety, quality and work force development has made him an exceptional leader," said President Lance Rosenmayer. He empowers his people and brings synergies across the organization, which was also a kay factor in promoting him to run the electrical services divisions."

Prior to INTREN, Dennis was the General Manager of Electric Distribution, Water and Fleet for the City of Oconomowoc, Wisconsin. He also managed multiple departments for the City with a focus on safety, efficiencies, responsible budgeting and customer satisfaction.

Dennis also worked at ComEd for 22 years, serving in his later years as Manager, Joliet and Area Manager of the Elgin/Aurora offices. He has also been on the Board of Directors of the Municipal Electric Utilities of Wisconsin (MEUW) and the Wisconsin Public Power Association (WPPI), along with serving on numerous boards and tech schools in Wisconsin.

Dennis earned his bachelor's degree in Business and Management from National Louis University. Along with his wife Karen, and son Anton, he also farms in Watertown, Wisconsin.
Regional Vice President of Business Development, Keith Garvey and Business Development Manager, Lloyd Gillespie graduated from BGE's 1-year Focus Forward Academy in September. BGE launched this Academy, a diverse business empowerment initiative, in 2013. The program provides rigorous technical assistance, coaching and direct access to BGE leaders and business partners who are committed to growing diversity and certified partnerships.

"The Focus Forward Diversity Academy was an exceptional program that offered multiple benefits," said Keith Garvey, "It gave us the opportunity to meet BGE buyers and better understand their processes and selection criteria. The academy also gave us a chance to interact and build stronger relationships with both diverse regional companies and senior executives from BGE."

The Academy is one of several initiatives which helped BGE receive national recognition by Edison Electric Institute (EEI) this spring for its commitment to increase business and relationships with diverse suppliers.

The graduation's guest speaker Calvin Butler, CEO of BGE, said since becoming CEO at BGE he has seen a steady improvement in efficiencies and productivity by having a diverse team. He said BGE has done better financially each year, and the company's diversity spend increased from 14% in 2013 to what will be near 33% this year. Butler also shared that 29 companies that graduated from Focus Forward received contracts valued at $150M.

"Our opportunity to participate in the Focus Forward Academy means that we are joining a very distinguished group of graduates. Last year, several graduates of this program successfully competed and won major awards," said Lloyd Gillespie.

BGE is a subsidiary of Exelon Corporation. With headquarters in Baltimore, MD, BGE was founded in 1816 as the nation's first gas utility and currently is Maryland's largest natural gas and electric utility. 

For more information regarding the Focus Forward Academy, please contact Keith Garvey at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
George Castellano has been hired as Director of Operations for INTREN's East Coast Gas Division to significantly bolster efforts to provide gas services to an expanding market of customers. As such, George has direct operational oversight of all gas projects currently being performed in the Baltimore and Philadelphia areas as well as future opportunities George Castellano with an INTREN truckfor east coast growth. George brings over 30 years of experience in underground utility construction working on both coasts and has a Bachelor of Science in business administration.

In accordance with INTREN's 2018 strategic initiatives, the INTREN Gas Division is experiencing significant growth. INTREN has been recently awarded a series of contracts across its various operating regions, and more manpower is crucial in preparations for this dramatic growth. George will continue to build upon East Coast Regional offices, increase INTREN's market share with existing major utility companies, and identify new revenue streams and market opportunities.

"We're very excited to have George join our team," Jeff Nauman, Vice President of Gas Operations, stated. "With our east coast gas teams in Philadelphia and Baltimore experiencing such rapid growth, combined with numerous new opportunities, the timing was right to add a Director of Operations located on the east coast who is solely dedicated to our customers in that region. This move also allows Doug Anderson [Director of Operations, Midwest Gas] to focus on our Midwest gas customers where we are also experiencing significant growth with several other new opportunities."

Matt Turk, Executive Vice President of Customer Solutions, gave his opinion on the hire. "With growth in our gas division, this is the perfect time to have both Midwest and East Coast directors of operations. We're excited that George joined the team and that Doug can focus on the Midwest."
Unique Woman-Controlled Board Welcomes Miller CEO Christina Ernst

INTREN, one of the nation’s largest certified Women Business Enterprise (WBE) specialty utility contractors, today announced they have closed the transaction to acquire Indiana-based Miller Construction Company, Inc., a third-generation full-service electrical contracting company, which is also a leading WBE.  INTREN’s focus now is a thoughtful integration of both companies.

“An acquisition evokes a myriad of emotions for employees and our focus now is on bringing our teams together in a way that minimizes any concerns,” said INTREN CEO Kelly Tomblin. Miller has an extraordinary team and we want to make sure they continue operations with as little interruption as possible. My intention is to assemble a creative integration team that will uncover and implement the best practices of both companies.”

Miller Construction’s 175 employees join INTREN’s 1,700-strong team to provide more to complete service offering through a wider geographic reach. Company President Andy Carmean will continue to oversee Miller activities and will join INTREN as Regional Vice President serving the Indianapolis and St. Louis markets.  Christina Ernst, CEO of the Miller Construction Company, will join the woman-controlled INTREN Board of Directors, one of the few in America’s utility contractor space.

 “Today, Miller employees are officially a part of the INTREN family, said Tomblin. However, we will continue to honor the Miller legacy and the three generations that built this extraordinary company. Our companies share similar roots, along with the same culture and values that are centered upon a deep customer focus, an ongoing commitment to safety, and a true caring for our employees and the communities we serve.”

INTREN Founder and Board Chair Loretta Rosenmayer stressed that INTREN’s acquisition furthers her vision of creating a national full-service company. “Our goal is not only to build the best women-owned business and woman-controlled board, but to be the best overall total-solutions provider for our customers. INTREN’s and Miller’s shared values of stewardship, integrity and customer focus will guide us, and firmly support our belief that companies do well in the marketplace by doing good,” Rosenmayer added.

This acquisition is in response to requests from our customers and the marketplace. We are expanding our transmission capabilities and expertise, and adding other services such as equipment testing, vegetation management and innovative professional services while maintaining the same safety, quality, and customer focus that INTREN has provided for nearly thirty years. We are now well-positioned to grow further and be even better partners for our customers in the future,” added Tomblin.

“As a family-owned and operated WBE, Miller Construction Company is thrilled to join the INTREN family,” Christina Ernst said. “Not only does INTREN embody the principles and values of Miller Construction Company, but we provide complementary services that will help INTREN achieve continuous growth and become a total utility solutions provider. Together we are well-positioned for industry leadership that will provide creative solutions for our customers.  I look forward to serving on the Board and continuing to help advise the combined companies.”

 INTREN’s acquisition of Miller Construction Company shows the industry that diverse companies can combine to create a different and innovative workplace offering.  INTREN’s latest growth to meet the infrastructure needs of the utility marketplace reflects their 30-year trajectory that was bolstered in 2017, when One Equity Partners became a minority investor, providing significant funding for future growth.

On Thursday, June 14, 2018, James Althoff from our Business Development department graduated from a nearly year-long leadership program in McHenry County: Leadership Greater McHenry County James Althoff stands with LGMC Plaque(LGMC). Unlike a more traditional skills based approach to leadership, James described LGMC as teaching its students to focus on understanding "what issues affect us, regionally, locally, and nationally".

Leadership can be viewed through a narrow lens as a tool to only be utilized in the workplace, but James learned how to utilize leadership skills to better serve the community. To that end, he studied Human Trafficking.

Human trafficking is an insidious problem in the Midwest, often times connected to drug routes flowing through Chicago. "Chicago, Rockford, McHenry are known as the trafficking triangle," James said. In addition to learning communication skills and other typical facets of leadership, James also learned to apply a leadership perspective to a broader angle. Part of why human trafficking continues to plague this region is that "we live in a bubble, so we don't see the periphery". People have to step up in their communities and assume leadership roles in order to combat issues pervading the local area.

Other teams in the program studied issues such as opioid addition or economic issues. James and the other graduates learned to "connect, educate, [and inspire engagement] in the community", andJames Althoff speaks at a podium doing so manifested itself through the variety of topics people dove into.

"It's really harder than it seems, it's trying to find out what your passion is and giving back to the community in some way," James said.

James is the 4th INTREN employee to complete the program, joining Sue Clarke, Mary Lucarelli, and Christina Mazhary as a fellow graduate of LGMC.

Unique Woman-Controlled Board Responds to Customers


INTREN, one of the nation's largest certified Women Business Enterprise (WBE) specialty utility contractors, today announces continued growth through its plan to combine with Indiana-based Miller Construction Company, Inc., a third-generation full-service electrical contracting company, and also a leading WBE. By joining forces, INTREN will broaden its marketplace offerings, including Miller Construction’s deep expertise in transmission.

“With Miller Construction, we have found a culture match and an experienced execution partner, as well as a company that shares our values and our vision of transforming the way business is done,” said INTREN founder and Chairwoman of the Board Loretta Rosenmayer. “Miller Construction is a family-owned business with a long history of exceptional safety and meeting customers’ needs, which makes them a natural fit for the INTREN family.”

Rosenmayer stressed that INTREN’s acquisition furthers her vision of creating a national full-service company. “Our goal is not only to build the best women-owned business and woman-controlled board, but to be the best overall total-solutions provider for our customers. INTREN’s and Miller’s shared values of stewardship, integrity and customer focus will guide us, and firmly support our belief that companies do well in the marketplace by doing good,” Rosenmayer added.

“INTREN is known for anticipating and fulfilling the needs of our customers and we are doing just that by broadening our capabilities through the acquisition of Miller Construction Company,” said Kelly Tomblin, INTREN’s Chief Executive Officer. “By joining forces, we are continuing our evolution to serve customers in every business segment, wherever they need us geographically,” she said.

“This acquisition is in response to requests from our customers and the marketplace. We are expanding our transmission capabilities and expertise, and adding other services such as equipment testing, vegetation management and innovative professional services while providing the same safety, quality, and customer focus. We are now well-positioned to grow further and be even better partners for our customers in the future,” added Tomblin.

Christina Ernst, the CEO of the Miller Construction Company, will join the woman-controlled INTREN Board of Directors, one of the few in America’s utility contractor space. 

Miller Construction’s 175 employees will join forces with INTREN’s 1,600-strong team to provide more work to customers through a wider geographic reach. Company President Andy Carmean will continue to oversee Miller activities and will join INTREN as Regional Vice President serving the Indianapolis and St. Louis markets.

“As a family-owned and operated WBE, Miller Construction Company is thrilled to join the INTREN family,” Christina Ernst said. “Not only does INTREN embody the principles and values of Miller Construction Company, but we provide complementary services that will help INTREN achieve continuous growth and become a total utility solutions provider. Together we are well-positioned for industry leadership that will provide creative solutions for our customers. I look forward to serving on the Board and continuing to help advise the combined companies. ”

INTREN’s acquisition of Miller Construction Company shows the industry that diverse companies can combine to create a different and innovative workplace offering. INTREN’s latest growth to meet the infrastructure needs of the utility marketplace reflects their 30-year trajectory that was bolstered in 2017, when One Equity Partners became a minority investor, providing significant funding for future growth.

About INTREN 
For 30 years, INTREN has been an innovative solution partner, dedicated to building and maintaining the infrastructure of 
the energy industry. The company’s culture of stewardship guides INTREN to care for others’ priorities as if they were their own. Through an unwavering commitment to safety, integrity, customer focus and employee empowerment, the company has succeeded in offering turnkey services to a long list of satisfied clients. As an industry leader, INTREN is proud to serve many of the country’s foremost utility companies, private contractors and developers, municipalities and cooperatives. For more information, please visit INTREN.com.

About Miller Construction Company 
Miller Construction Company is a full-service electrical contracting company, providing deep expertise and services throughout the Midwest in overhead transmission and distribution, along with emergency storm restoration services, nationwide. Miller also provides extensive in-house project management and estimating, along with vegetation management and electrical testing services.

The Vincennes, Indiana-based third-generation family business is a certified Women Business Enterprise (WBE) and possesses a long history of exceptional safety, exceeding customers’ needs, and deeply caring for their employees and their communities. For more information, please visit MillerPower.com.

FURTHER READING
About Intren (PDF)
About Miller (PDF)
Acquisition FAQ (PDF)
Press Release (PDF)

Former Utility Attorney to Help Spearhead Growth

INTREN is excited to announce the addition of Douglas Graham as in-house General Counsel to support the company’s growth and acquisition strategy.

 “With One Equity Partners as our minority investor, we have significant opportunities to partner with like-minded, diverse companies to serve our customers,” said INTREN CEO Kelly Tomblin. “Doug will help integrate these companies under the INTREN umbrella, and allow us to provide a total-solutions offer from coast-to-coast.”

Most recently, Doug was General Counsel for Oil-Dri Corporation of America, a worldwide leader in sorbent mineral technology, where he led all legal, including managing acquisitions, real-estate and labor relations.

Prior, he served as Assistant General Counsel for Commonwealth Edison Co. for 11 years, where he focused on business counseling, governmental relations, compliance, and regulatory matters, along with litigation, labor and employment advice. Doug also worked in house for the Tribune Media Company, United Airlines, as well as at the law firm of Jenner & Block.

As the country's largest owned and operated union WBE specialty contractor, INTREN will utilize Doug's real estate and labor expertise to open new offices across the country and expand our range of capabilities.

"As we approach INTREN's 30th Anniversary, it's been our ability to continually evolve to serve our customers' changing needs that has made us successful," said INTREN President, Lance Rosenmayer. "Employing an in house attorney that understands our business, like Doug, is vital to INTREN's next chapter."

Graham received his Juris Doctor with Distinction from the University of Michigan Law School. He also has an undergraduate degree in Economics and History Honors from the University of Michigan. Among many honors received, Graham was previously recognized by the Chicago Lawyer as one of Illinois' "Forty Under 40" lawyers to watch.

Doug is based out of INTREN's corporate headquarters in Union, IL.

 

 

The 2018 CONSTRUCT Graduating ClassINTREN CEO Kelly Tomblin, Executive Vice President of Customer Solutions Matthew Turk and Business Development Manager Lloyd Gillespie recently attended the CONSTRUCT graduation, which featured the largest class of 108 graduates, since its inception.
 
The 9-week job training program, which is in its 6th year, is focused on increasing the pool of qualified minority candidates for entry-level construction jobs in Illinois. Matthew Turk was also recognized at this year’s event as the architect of this CONSTRUCT program.
 
“As one of CONSTRUCT’s founding sponsors, it is exciting to watch the program expand and change the lives of so many,” said CEO Kelly Tomblin. “I applaud the construction industry for placing focus on diverse candidates and giving them the training and opportunity to join a significant industry with many options for growth.”
 
What began with ComEd, 10 companies and three social service agencies has grown to include Illinois' other major utilities - Nicor Gas, Peoples' Gas, 38 companies and eight social service agencies. This year’s curriculum also launched a new Project Management and Planning track, along with the Construction and Skilled Trades.
 
For more information on this program, please contact Business Development Manager This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

WBE Specialty Utility Contractor INTREN Does Quality Differently

 

Not since the Industrial Revolution have companies been so challenged with the absolute need to change the way they manage and operate. Technological, regulatory, and competitive forces are shifting the utility landscape which will change dramatically in the not so distant future with quality performance being a leading differentiator.  

 

Company Information:  

WBE specialty utility contractor, INTREN has faced these evolving changes head-on by announcing a unique, innovative approach to quality management that is designed to involve every employee, in every department, at every level and at every INTREN office throughout the country.  With ISO 9001:2015 standards as their guide, INTREN has successfully implemented an updated quality management system that addresses the individual concerns of each customer while creating a strategic advantage for INTREN internally by providing a platform for continuous improvement.Intren quality structure diagram

 

“How we approach quality is more important than the progressive tools we use,” states Scott Fowler, INTREN’s Quality Manager. 

 

While no one approach will meet the needs of every customer, the INTREN leadership team has chosen to follow the latest ISO model to ensure a high level of integrity within its Quality program.

 

As the company enters its 30th year in business, INTREN continues to earn the trust of many of the nation’s largest utilities, municipalities and cooperatives dedicated to building and maintaining the infrastructure of the energy industry.   Now, this award-winning company has expanded its brand into new markets by integrating a customer centric, scalable quality management system into the way they do business.

 

“We believe our commitment and approach to quality provides us with a unique competitive advantage,” states Fowler. “We’ve listened carefully to our customers and responded in a professional way by providing all stakeholders with scalable, expandable and cost-effective solutions to quality.

 

Our CEO, Kelly Tomblin, along with INTREN’s senior leadership, are the champions behind this effort and are clearly committed to its success. We’ve all been empowered to personally deliver the best quality possible each and every day.”

 

INTREN has strengthened its internal culture of ‘OutPerforming. Everyday.’ by developing a strategic process and structured model behind its quality improvements.  The INTREN process is based on integrity and is designed to ensure every customer gets consistent quality service every time. “We’re focused on producing quality work the first time, every time, because people’s lives and livelihoods depend on the services we deliver.   One of our shared goals is to self-identify risk and reduce rework to increase our competitiveness,” stated Fowler.

 

Both field and office teams regularly review operating processes to identify current or potential quality issues.  Each day, every work group is expected to “Self-Identify” Quality shortcomings in order to prevent future consequences.  The identified risks are communicated as “Lessons Learned” across the entire INTREN organization.

 

INTREN is a leading specialty contractor, well known for serving the needs of its customers.  Their customer-centric approach ensures that every INTREN employee is trained to clearly understand how Quality is defined for each specific customer but also how to best deliver that Quality.  Since quality is not a one size fits all concept, listening to understand is INTREN’S first step in delivering a customer focused Quality solution. 

 

Regular status updates consist of high-level graphical reports, along with location specific detailed reports that outline Quality compliance as well as self-identified deficiencies. “We’ve learned to take the Quality message to where the audience is,” stated Fowler.  “By using a wide variety of communication tools, we are able to deliver a consistent Quality message to a broad audience.” 

 

In the end INTREN hopes to accomplish two goals:  First, that customers will appreciate the company’s full transparency and know that placing their trust in INTREN is good for business.  Second, that all stakeholders see quality as a personal responsibility. 

 

“This is a game changer in the industry.  We are clearly demonstrating that as our customer’s needs evolve, so has the way INTREN responds.  We want to be known as a trusted partner that delivers economical, quality solutions to our customers every time,” stated Fowler. 

 

As the economic spotlight in utility operations continues to drive efficiencies, INTREN has identified Quality as a strategic advantage and uses Continuous Improvement as a way to reduce costs associated with previously unidentified opportunities. The INTREN approach to Quality stresses that every employee validate quality work at every step of a project.  While the INTREN team is reminded daily of the benefits of completing work error free, understanding how to deliver Quality to each specific customer is what sets them apart.

 

INTREN has always used Quality as a cornerstone for success. Now they are advancing their efforts by putting this unique process and structured model behind its plan for continued growth and future success.

 

To learn more about INTREN’s, focus on quality, visit https://www.intren.com/about-us/quality-commitment

Innovative Solutions and Collaboration are Key to Solving the Labor Shortage Says Bellcock

INTREN is proud to announce that Mike Bellcock has been hired as a Senior Labor and Workforce Strategist, effective immediately.

"With the country's present shortage of skilled labor, Mike's creative thinking and innovation will lead us to solve this issue for our customers," said Matthew Turk, INTREN's Executive Vice President of Customer Solutions & Business Development. "With INTREN now in eleven states, this will also enable us to integrate a consistent approach coast-to-coast."

For the past 16 years, Bellcock has been a Business Agent for IBEW Local 2150 in Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin, where he was able to bring a fresh and innovative approach to attracting skilled labor and creating a groundswell of candidates for entry-level positions. He is also a 30-year member of the IBEW.

"The key to success is always a collaborative approach between the union, contractor and utility, where we all strive to provide forward-thinking solutions for the customer's challenges," said Bellcock.

For example, Bellcock and his team were tasked with creating a pool of entry-level workers for their utility's Smart Meter installation program that focused on minorities and women. Together, with the Wisconsin Regional Training Partnership, they created a boot-camp style, 40-hour training where graduating students were awarded a special-skills certificate that bumped them up on the referral list. 

"The outcome of that collaboration resulted in over 50% of all Smart Meter installers being a minority or female," said Bellcock. "We knew the program was especially successful when many of those hires began to filter up into the URD (Underground Residential Distribution) program and lineman apprenticeship training."

According to Bellcock, with the current shortage, it also takes compromise from the union and their members when looking at long-term solutions.

At one time, Wisconsin URD workers were paid the Journeymen Linemen wage and benefit package, but it was actually IBEW equipment operators and groundman performing the work and the utility questioned why they were paying the higher rates. In order to maintain the work on the property and prevent the customer from utilizing the nonunion or non-IBEW contractors, Local 2150 created a URD Installer classification of union member. With an associated one-year training program and slightly reduced wages, it more than tripled the number of workers over time, while increasing customer satisfaction with the work.

"If you don't have innovative ideas from the contractor or the union and are not willing to take risks or collaboration, you will get stuck, said Bellcock. Forward-thinking individuals and organizations, no matter how great the challenge can always alleviate this."

" I am excited that Mike has joined our team to help us find innovative solutions to this industry challenge. Working with our customers, unions, workforce organizations and various schools and colleges throughout the country, we plan to outline both short - and long-term workforce strategies," added INTREN CEO Kelly Tomblin. "INTREN is committed to fully servicing our customers' needs and to do that we will focus on making sure we have the right people to serve them and the industry for the years to come."