Women Building the Nation A Conference Welcoming All Women in the Trades

Women Building the Nation
A Conference Welcoming All Women
in the Trades and Women in the Industry from Everywhere 
April 5th – April 7th
Sheraton Grand
1230 J Street, Sacramento, California

This will be the third national all-craft tradeswomen conference held in the U.S. since 2001. Over 600 Tradeswomen broke the record for attendance in 2011. In 2012, 520 Tradeswomen attended, from 26 States and Canada as well as Namibia, Curacao and Switzerland. The official conference sponsors are the Building and Construction Trades Department, AFL-CIO and the California Building Trades Council. In addition, several international unions are making donations to support the conference.

The conference is designed to give opportunities for networking, skill building, leadership development and organizing. Each year, tradeswomen, union leaders, apprenticeship coordinators, contractors, and politicians facilitate more than 30 workshops and plenary sessions.

This national conference is piggy-backed to the Women Building California conference, which is heading into its 12th year. The conference costs are kept extremely low to enable as many women as possible to attend. Registration, if paid before Feb 22nd, is $75 per person. This fee includes breakfast, lunch, snack and reception on Saturday, and breakfast and snack on Sunday.

Link to Event Brochure

Link to Registration
Link to Facebook Event Page
Please post your ETA and if you have or need a room to share as well as what trade you are in and where you are from.

Link to Past Women’s Build Event Photos Page
Please send any and all photos of Past Women Build California to donate to share to shyeshye@gmail.com

Bullet Points on the Value of the Women Building California and the Nation

HOW TO: Make a Motion from the Floor Requesting Union Support for Conference Attendance

HOW TO: Write a Letter Requesting Union Support for Conference Attendance

Example letter to Executive Board to get sponsorship

Transportation Options

Take I-5 into downtown Sacramento. Exit at J Street. The hotel is on the right between 12th and 13th Streets.
From the Sacramento Airport:
The hotel is 12 miles from the airport. Taxi is approx. $40. Super Shuttle: $15.
By Amtrak:
The hotel is a half mile from the Amtrak station. Taxi is about $7.
Self-parking is $18/day.
Valet parking is $22/day. Other lots are available nearby.
If you get there early…ck out the city …..
California State Railroad Museum's excursion railroad


The California Museum For History, Women & The Arts
The free DASH Trolley
travels in a loop and stops at Old Sacramento, the Convention Center, and the K Street Mall, near its many stops are hotels, shops, restaurants, and museums. The Trolley operates from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. daily. The interval between rides during weekdays is 15 minutes; during weekends, it's 30 minutes.

Map of Points of Interest

Link to Sheraton for Registration

Special Rate Code:  Women Build Conference
 (The hotel rate is $115 + tax per night for a room with 2 queen beds, up to 4 per room is allowed. There is also a King Suite to share at $265 + tax per night, 2 bedroom with King beds, 2 bath and a living room suite with a roll away 5 per room is allowed. Some of the ladies will stay until Monday, so if that is your best flight rate, you will not be alone)

Link to Sacramento Airport    12 miles from the Sheridan

This hotel does not provide shuttle service.

Event Vendor Tables are $300 Plus registration fees for those staffing the table. E-mail Debra Chaplan, dchaplan@sbctc.org

All are Welcome to donate something to the Raffle.
There is a traditional Large Raffle at the end of the conference. Tools, Gear, Gift baskets, Gift cards, Tee-shirts, Trades Jackets, Hats, and an endless variety of wonderful donated stuff. Tradeswomen Inc. President, Carol Toliver, will coordinate the raffle. Email
Carol@tradeswomen.org for donations to the raffle.  Emails should include a description of item(s) with the appropriate contact information, to get back to you. Please bring the item(s) to the conference or have the vendor or merchant ship it to Debra Chaplan’s office.  SBCTC / 1225 8th Street #375 / Sacramento, CA 95814.  Request an Example of Letter Asking for Donations from Carol if you wish to help with that effort.
Or just send this e-mail and then call your local, contractor, hardware store, or product or tool vendor and ask who to talk to about getting a donation for the conference.

This Conference is put on for and By tradeswomen, and women in the construction industry just like you. The 10s of thousands of volunteer hours that have been given for the last 13 years, touches the heart, and speaks to the true sprit of Sisterhood. To be a part of it, all you have to do is stand up and want to help, and then do so.

Looking for tradeswomen who have gotten Domestic Benefits into their contract to help with the Round Table.

Looking for Women who have managed successful women’s committees and mentoring projects, to help with the workshop

Looking for tradeswomen to help with the Green Workshop    (IBEW is covered, we need other trades doing
green work)

Looking for a Woman apprenticeship coordinator/instructor, to help with the “After the Tools” work shop

Looking for a tradeswoman who also teaches Yoga, to lead Sunday mornings stretch and flex.

Looking for tradeswomen to help with
Unions 101 – how it works
Parliamentary Procedure
Leadership 101
What’s in your Collective Bargaining Agreement?
If you wish to help, please contact Debra Chaplan ASAP at

Looking for Photos of Tradeswomen On the Jobsite
Sisters in the Building Trades will again be making a Video for the Conference, Please donate photos to the
Sisters Gallery,  Our online Gallery of photos free to use, by grade schools, high schools, colleges, apprenticeships, outreach, state agencies, safety programs, etc. Is now the largest of its kind on the net. Send photo donations to shyeshye@gmail.com
If the younger generation can see us, they can dream of following us…

What to Wear and what to Bring……..
Bring something comfortable to learn in and something to have fun in. :)
If you feel up to it, bring something dressy for the reception on Saturday and plan to go out and about with your sisters after that to ck out the town.
You will want to bring union pins, tee's and stickers if you have them, and business cards by the load.
There will be a Lapel Pin Board that has been collecting pins of locals where women have come from over the years you can donate to.
Just a note, there will be a short energetic IUOE member, who is the Founder of “Blue Collar Women” Just fair warning, she is a Pin Collector Nut, so you better bring at least 2!

Feel welcome to bring things to donate to the Tradeswomen Archives,  like a scan of your apprenticeship papers or Journey card, photos, whatever you may have. WE ARE HERSTORY. Bring stuff or scans of stuff, from Mom, Grandma, and Aunts in the non traditional trades if you have it. And you may as well when you are done reading this, click the link above and put Your name in the Archives.

There will be an informal Gathering on Friday

Friday April 5th -  The Pre Conference Gathering is a fun event that provides great camaraderie, networking, political bs, entertainment, laughter, bullshitting, making friends, and having fun. There will be sisters meeting for lunch, and checking out the local attractions. Post on the Event Page if there is somewhere you want to go or check out and connect with other sisters you have yet to meet to go with you. There will be others continously meeting at the Public Market Bar, on the first floor of the Sheraton. You can see it from registration at the front desk. If you arrive before check in, the front desk can store your bags until check in, so you can go out and enjoy the city.
At 5 pm the Women in Leadership Meet and Greet will start.
Beware, Breakfast is at 7am.

Saturday Registration starts at 7am and the conference will run until 4:30.
At 6 pm the Saturday Conference Reception Starts.
Sunday Breakfast is at 8am and the conference runs until 4:30 pm.

Now is the time for Sisters everywhere to put in a request to be sponsored to go, to their Local, Regional, Employer, Labor Center, county and state Building and Construction Trades Council, Apprenticeship, Contractor, and other orgs and agency's supporting women in the blue collar industry. Yes, I do mean send out 5 or 6 letters all at once. Not only will you be hedging your bet, but every letter helps spread the word, and helps start the conversation for a request next year.


Every woman in the blue collar trades and construction industry are expected to help get the word out, attempt to attend, and help make this as big and kick ass as we can manage.
This is a all hands on deck call to All, Everywhere....Yes! We Mean YOU!

Forward this e-mail to every human in the industry you have an e-mail for.

There is a fax version on the event page you can print and send to every local, apprenticship, contractor, woman owned contractor, and community collage you can find a number for. If you don't reach out to the women in your area, then it is very likely no one will.

If we all donate an hour of time, we CAN break the record this year.

I set the Goal at 1,000 women. :) You never know, if we reach for the brass ring…..we just may catch it.

The Sisters United, will Never be Divided!
Sorry, couldn’t help my self
See you in Sacramento!

Sharing and caring and Finding a way….

Those who have gotten a double room and have space to share, those who need to share a room post on the facebook event page

Note, Debra will need volunteers to stuff bags, help with set up, tear down and various duties throughout the conference.
If you would like to donate to the conference, or to help more women attend write to Debra at dchaplan@sbctc.org

Where there is a Will….there is a Way…
If we cannot find a way….We will Make one!