Joel Gonzalez has been appointed interim apprenticeship director at the Oregon & SW Washington Roofers & Waterproofers Training Center. He succeeds Clint Mapes, who is leaving for New York to do charity work for his church.
Gonzalez, 40, has worked at the training center for the last 15 years, first as an instructor, and most recently as the full-time curriculum coordinator. He is a graduate of the four-year training program located in Southeast Portland.
Mapes, 45, was hired as the director in 2005. He went through an expedited training program in Portland in the mid-’90s, after working several years for a nonunion shop. “I heard about the union, so right away I went over to the union hall to sign up,” he said. He was placed in the apprenticeship program, which he completed in less than two years under the tutelage of Coordinator Roy Bolt. Mapes helped Bolt build mockups for classes, and eventually was hired as an instructor. He took over the program when Bolt retired. At that time, there were about 65 apprentices. Today, the program has more than 200 apprentices, and 25 classes that are held from October to mid-May.
“I love to teach,” Gonzalez said. “The industry changes so much. You have to stay aggressive, create new classes, to keep ahead of it in order to turn out good, all-around roofers.”