McKinstry wins national biz award for green work with WDC

McKinstry wins national biz award for green work with WDC

February 2011

SEATTLE-McKinstry Co. was honored today by the National Association of Workforce Boards for its collaboration on green jobs and skills with the Workforce Development Council of Seattle King-County.

The W.O. Lawton Business Leadership Award-which honors companies that commit time, money, and leadership to make their community's workforce and economy more vibrant-was presented over the weekend at the National Association of Workforce Boards forum in Washington D.C.

David Allen, Executive Vice President of McKinstry and a WDC board member, accepted the award while Marléna Sessions, CEO of the WDC, shared the stage at the Renaissance Washington D.C. Hotel.

"David and McKinstry have been incredibly valuable partners to us in making investments in green training," said Sessions. "Having an industry leader working side-by-side with the public system has led to great results for the people of King County."

When the WDC asked Allen to lead its Green Design and Green Building Skills Panel in 2008, he and the company willingly took on the role of industry champion. McKinstry's used its extensive industry connections to recruit area businesses for the panel, which was made up of business, labor, education, economic development, government, and workforce development. This pro-active group identified critical needs in our region for green jobs training and produced a wide range of research, curricula and public information.

As the Green Building Panel completed its work, McKinstry and David Allen remained strongly engaged as the panel evolved into the Green Workforce Council, which incorporates manufacturing, energy, transportation and environment.

"Through it all, David and McKinstry never hesitated to step into a leadership role," said Sessions. "Their influence among other businesses made the difference between a pro forma industry connection and a truly engaged one."

A Seattle-based construction, energy and facility services firm with over 1,600 employees and approximately $400 million in annual revenue, McKinstry has earned a national reputation in the energy-efficiency sector.

This connection and the foundation laid by the two panels prepared the WDC to compete for and win more than $10 million in ARRA grants for green-skills training.

McKinstry has also strongly supported the mission of the WDC and other WIBs throughout the country. McKinstry supported the WDC's 2009 campaign for youth summer-jobs hiring, hosting the kickoff event, helping to spread the word among its contractors and itself hiring youth for the summer. David Allen joined the WDC board in 2010. In September, he co-presented with Sessions at the U.S. Conference of Mayors 22nd annual Congressional forum on our industry-sector best practices.

To learn more about the WDC's efforts to identify green jobs and skills and train workers for today's and tomorrow's jobs, visit See also the WDC's new green-jobs website at


The Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County ( <> ) is a nonprofit workforce "think tank" and grant-making organization that oversees employment-related programs for youth, the adult workforce and employers in King County, with the goal of a strong economy and self-sufficiency for every resident.

Contact: Margret Graham
(206) 914-5904