Appalachian Basin

Energy Jobs Abundant at Congressman Johnson’s Job Fair

Yesterday, Congressman Bill Johnson hosted the 2012 Eastern Ohio Job Fair at the East Liverpool Motor Lodge. The event attracted over 70 vendors with just  over 500 participants hoping to take advantage of the employment opportunities these companies offered. Among those present were local staples ranging from Avon to Walmart, but those companies tied to the development of the Utica Shale held the strongest presence.  Companies like Chesapeake EnergyMarkWest and V&M Star all had booths talking with interested candidates about employment opportunities.

But as we have seen, shale development trickles down to benefit many other groups and businesses.  Manufacturers and Unions both had booths looking to hire new candidates.  The Operating Engineers Local 18 as well as the Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 396 were looking to recruit new trainees to help them with the increase in business.  BuTech Bliss and the Mahoning Valley Manufacturers Coalition were actively looking for qualified workers to help them handle the increased workload shale development has offered them.

These companies and unions are looking to help fill some of the estimated 204,520 jobs that will be created from shale development by 2015.  Luckily, Congressman Johnson saw this development as a chance for his constituents to benefit.  Although eastern Ohio has a long history of high unemployment, we have in the Utica the true potential to become an importer of opportunity rather than an exporter of jobs.

MarkWest Energy Partners was looking to fill positions for their recently announced Ohio operations. The company is in the process of building gathering lines in GuernseyBelmont and Harrison counties. In addition to gathering lines, they are constructing processing plants in both Noble and Harrison Counties that will employ hundreds of Ohio workers.

Anne Wheeler, Human Resources Manager with MarkWest, was on hand to encourage folks to apply for positions at

We are here in Ohio today at the job fair today looking for people to be able to talk with them about positions we are going to have coming open at our newly announce Cadiz Ohio office.  It’s a little bit south of here.  Harrison County has been very welcoming.  We are very excited to be building our plant in the Cadiz area. – Anna Wheeler

Many of Ohio’s businesses are beginning to recognize the importance of Utica Shale development as well.  In the Mahoning Valley, manufacturing had always played a huge role in offering good-paying jobs to their employees.  With steel seeing resurgence, many manufacturers are supplying these large facilities with the equipment and parts needed to run their mills.

Jessica Borza, Executive Director of the Mahoning Valley Manufacturers Coalition, sees Utica development as a great opportunity for the 30 companies they represent in the MahoningColumbiana and Trumbull Counties.

Some of our manufacturers have already benefited from business in the oil and gas industry and others are becoming positioned to do business with the oil and gas industry. – Jessica Borza

One of the coalition’s members, BuTech Bliss, also had a booth at the event.  Chuck Jackson, vice president of operations, sees not only the uptick in shale development bringing a need to add new employees, but also the impact of retiring baby boomers on the current workforce.  The company, based in Lisbon, manufactures many of the rollers needed in steel production.  But Butech Bliss doesn’t just want to supply heavy equipment and rollers to steel mills; they are looking to see how their business can work directly with shale developers and producers.

We’re a builder of heavy equipment for the metals industry.  We make all types of machinery.  We build extrusion presses, rolling mill equipment and coil processing equipment.  We also do job shop work.  We are very busy. We do a lot of foreign work as well as domestic and we are currently hiring.  We are looking for welders and machinists. -Chuck Jackson

Trade unions had a strong presence at the event, and were looking to recruit qualified workers to fill some of their  open jobs thanks to the expanding development of the Utica Shale. Operating Engineers Local 18 and the Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 396 are but two of these groups directly benefiting from employment opportunities directly linked to this development.

Local 396  has been quite busy of late, working with Ohio’s steel mills to provide the necessary pipes and fittings for oil and gas production.  And the opportunities for employment don’t end at the steel mills – the group is also looking at the upcoming processing plants and pipeline construction operations to keep them busy in the years to come.

This has been a big shot in the arm with the amount of work that already started just with the need of the industry in our valley.  We’re doing a big project in the Mahoning County now that has roughly 300 plumber pipefitters on it and we’re looking to continue our work efforts with some of the process work that is going to be developing in the oil and gas exploration field. -Tim Callion

Over 500 attended Congressman Johnson’s job fair Monday, some leaving with jobs and others receiving a prime opportunity to put their best foot forward (along with their resumes) in front of prospective employers. Thankfully, Utica Shale development has helped drive the need for new employment, directly or indirectly, for the job seekers in the area.

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