After success at its inaugural event in September 2011, Irwin Tools is once again sponsoring National Tradesmen Day. “At Irwin, recognizing the efforts of America’s tradesmen is part of our brand’s DNA,” says vice president of marketing Curt Weber. “America’s tradesmen are electricians, plumbers, welders, drywall installers, framers, masons, carpenters, auto mechanics, and more. They are our nation’s real working hands.”

Celebrations gearing up for National Tradesmen Day took place in late August during the NASCAR Irwin Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway in Bristol, Tenn. In addition to giving away more than 1,000 grandstand tickets to trade workers, the company honored 23 “Tradesmen of the Track” during pre-race ceremonies, and 300 professional tradesmen served as Grand Marshals for the race.

No. 1 

Position of “skilled trades” on ManpowerGroup’s annual Talent Shortage Survey listing the most difficult jobs to fill. In the U.S., 41% of more than 1,300 employers surveyed reported difficulty filling positions, due mainly to lack of applicants or too few applicants with experience or hard skills.

Building a Future

Irwin also sponsors career-training organization SkillsUSA, and recently partnered with the National Center for Construction Education and Research on its Build Your Future campaign. The company’s goal is to encourage more students to consider trade-oriented career paths.

A recent survey from ManpowerGroup, citing skilled trades as the most difficult positions to fill, noted that a focus on four-year university education “has resulted in the decline of vocational/technical programs.” To that end, Irwin Tools president Ross Porter says that the company wants to “focus the nation’s attention on the vital role of technical training in our high schools and post-secondary institutions.”

Outside the racetrack and the classroom, Irwin is encouraging small businesses to host their own National Tradesmen Day events, and to spread the word to consumers to thank the hardworking crews that help them out every day. Visit nationaltradesmenday.comto learn more. —Lauren Hunter, senior editor,REMODELING.

More in REMODELING about National Tradesmen Day:

Irwin Tools Names Sept. 16, 2011 National Tradesmen Day