Lt. Governor Toland Announces Appointments to Kansas Apprenticeship Council

Kansas Department of Commerce News Release, May 5, 2022 – click to read original version

TOPEKA – Lieutenant Governor and Secretary of Commerce David Toland today announced appointees to the Kansas Apprenticeship Council (KAC). These appointments are a significant step towards modernizing the Registered Apprenticeship program in Kansas.

“Registered Apprenticeships are a huge benefit to employers and employees alike,” saidLieutenant Governor and Secretary of Commerce David Toland. “With more Registered Apprenticeships in Kansas, we can meet the needs of our employers and increase opportunities for Kansans of all ages to find a great place to work, in a high-demand occupation, right here in our state.”

Members of the Kansas Apprenticeship Council are as follows:

  • Tony Naylor, KAC Chair – Training Director, Wichita Electrical Training Center
  • Eugene “Gene” Sicard, KAC Vice Chair – Assistant Business Manager, IBEW 304
  • Dr. Mark Johnson, KAC Secretary – Pittsburg State University Professor for Workforce Development
  • John Clark – Training Director, Wichita Plumbers and Pipefitters
  • Mathew Flerlage – Carpenters Association of Kansas and Missouri
  • Michael Gibson – Executive Vice President, Associated General Contractors
  • Roy Konkey – Retired Apprenticeship Training Representative for the Federal Department of Labor
  • Alise Martiny – Business Manager, Greater Kansas City Building and Construction Trades Council
  • Beverly Mortimer – Senior Vice President of Programming, Jobs for America’s Graduates
  • Neelima Parasker – President and CEO, SnapIT Solutions
  • Katy Reynolds – Chief Operating Officer, Greely County Health Services
  • Dr. Jennifer Seymour – Vice President, General Education & Applied Technologies, WSU Tech

A Registered Apprenticeship is an intentional partnership that provides customizable, earn-and-learn job training to support the Kansas workforce and our economy as a whole. The role of the Kansas Apprenticeship Council (KAC) is to establish Registered Apprenticeship programs in traditional and non-traditional occupations.

The KAC also supports growth opportunities for community colleges, technical colleges, workforce boards, chambers, economic development councils, businesses, non-profits and labor unions to start or expand new programs in all industries. The industries the KAC will be focused on include advanced manufacturing, construction, energy, agriculture, healthcare, IT, hospitality and more.

“KAC is the approving body for all existing and new apprenticeships in Kansas,” Director of Employment Services Mike Beene said. “With a full council, we can move forward with expansion and modernization of the program.”

The KAC works jointly with representatives of the Kansas Department of Commerce, Kansas Department of Transportation, Kansas Board of Regents, Kansas Department of Education, Kansas Department of Corrections and other agencies and organizations—both public and private—who are concerned with employment and training in the business and industrial sector.

“First and foremost, registered apprenticeship sponsors develop highly skilled employees,” said Tony Naylor, Chairman of the KAC. “Once established, apprenticeship training can also reduce turnover rates, increase productivity, lower the cost of recruitment and increase safety in the workplace.”

The KAC plays an important role in the registration process of all Registered Apprenticeship programs developed in the state to ensure Registered Programs align with state and federal guidelines. The KAC will also play a pivotal role in developing the strategic direction for growth in the Kansas Registered Apprenticeship program.

“These appointments reflect our high priority to ensure that a diverse set of voices is represented by those on the council,” said Director of Internships and Apprenticeships Shonda Atwater. “We look forward to working with this highly-qualified group of stakeholders to grow Registered Apprenticeship opportunities across Kansas.”