Baker Brothers Electric
Baker Brothers Electric in Moore recently received the Outstanding Business/Industry Partner Award from the Oklahoma Career and Technical Education Equity Council.
The company was one of four businesses and organizations honored along with 12 Oklahomans at the 27th annual Making It Work Day at the Capitol in a virtual ceremony April 30. Making It Work Day recognizes individuals who are committed to removing barriers to success for single-parent families by providing educational experiences for students beyond the classroom. The ceremony also recognized nontraditional students.
Baker Brothers Electric, a family-owned business that provides electrical contract work for residential and commercial properties, began working on internships with the Moore Norman Technology Center’s HIRE program in 2019, said Matt Fix, HIRE coordinator, who nominated the business for the award.
The HIRE program began working with Charee “Red” Thurman, project manager and administrator for Baker Brothers Electric, and has since placed several students in intern positions at the company.
“Red has been wonderful to work with and has gone out of her way to assist our students and help mentor them on their path to success,” Fix said. “She has made arrangements for internships, been available as a member of HIRE’s advisory board and just been a great advocate for the HIRE program and our students.”
Fix added that Baker Brothers “has demonstrated that they are not only a good business but also a great community partner. Looking at people for who they are and being willing to take a chance on individuals that other companies might look down upon speaks volumes to the company’s integrity and mission.”
OkCTEEC is affiliated with the administrative division of the Oklahoma Association of Career and Technology Education. The council advocates for students pursuing nontraditional careers and for resources for educating single parents.
“The Making It Work Day ceremony is such an important part of OkCTEEC as it publicly acknowledges those students, programs and business partners that have done an outstanding job meeting their career goals,” said KayTee Niquette, Work Prep and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families coordinator at the Oklahoma Department of Career and Technology Education. “The event this year is even more important, as we have persevered through a pandemic and still have individuals who have excelled.”
She serves as an adviser for OkCTEEC, along with Lisa French of the Department of Human Services and Gina McPherson of the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education.
The COVID-19 pandemic created challenges, said Lisa D. Brown, OkCTEEC president and director for career transitions at Oklahoma City Community College, but students, faculty, staff and community partners met the challenges head-on, redesigning traditional methods of assistance and education.
“These students have persevered through the many changes in their pursuit of their goals and even some events in their own families,” she said. “In addition to their academic success, they have strengthened even more skills in communication, collaboration, adaptation and endurance that will be of great benefit as valuable life skills they will never forget they developed or discovered they had.”
OkCTEEC’s purposes include promoting and supporting career and technology education, increasing its effectiveness, promoting research in the field and in educational equity, developing leadership and advocating for equity and diversity.