Stanford Williams

VP, Chief Inclusion and Diversity Officer, Messer Construction Co.

“Workforce development is not for the faint of heart. It takes hard work as well as grace and understanding…and a great partner like Building Value.”


Now in its 20th year, Building Value (powered by Easterseals Redwood) celebrates its partnership with Messer Construction, which provides workforce development and job training to hundreds of people in the Greater Cincinnati region, focusing on expanding diversity, equity, and inclusion in the construction industry.

In 2018, the two formed the Urban Workforce Development Initiative, a program which creates sustainable careers in construction to address economic challenges facing urban neighborhoods. Stanford Williams knows this first-hand as Messer’s Chief Inclusion and Diversity Officer.

“It takes an element of grace to meet people where they are and help them get to where they want to be in life, and this is where our partnership shines best. It’s a win-win for everyone!”

Building Value’s training program and partnership with Messer and area contractors supports this initiative in 4 keys phases:

  • Phase 1 – Recruitment, paid on-site job training, and supportive services for candidates
  • Phase 2 – Candidates paired with contractors on job sites
  • Phase 3 – Graduates hired to full-time employment with benefits within 90 days
  • Phase 4 – Follow-along support for the 1st year of full-time employment
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