Baltimore-D.C. Building Trades (BDCBT) President Stephen Courtien has been a member of International Union of Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT) since 1998, serving in several key roles at both the local (District Council 51) and international level. In 2011, Courtien began his role as the Business/Legislative Representative and D.C. Director for the Washington, D.C. Building and Construction Trades Council (now the Baltimore-D.C. Building Trades) where he represented and advanced the views and interests of the Building Trades before various councils and boards.
The region thrived under his leadership as Stephen helped negotiate, implement, and administer more Project Labor Agreements in the Capital region than at any time in the modern era. As part of that seminal work, Stephen was also responsible for initiating, nurturing, and maintaining close working relationships with contractors and developers. In recognition of his established industry credential and résumé, Stephen was appointed President of the BDCBT by North America’s Building Trades Unions’ President Sean McGarvey effective January 1st, 2020.
Nichalas "Nick" Cummings has been a union advocate and member of the Plumbers and Steamfitters Local 486 since 1999. With a passion for union apprenticeships, Nick became an instructor and Trustee for 486's Joint Apprenticeship Training Committee. He taught and mentored hundreds of apprentices for many years. He later became a recruiter and elected officer for local 486 where he established strong relationships with community based organizations in Baltimore City and the surrounding counties and spoke with countless high school students about union apprenticeship programs.
Born and raised in Baltimore City Nick quickly learned core values such as humility, loyalty, integrity and compassion. Through hard work and dedication he distinguished himself working at the trade and also for the local.
As Director, Nick has been entrusted to continue implementation of the pre-apprenticeship program and to increase recruitment of applicants by working with community organizations to establish pathways into union apprenticeship. Nick's goal is to provide apprenticeship opportunities to disadvantaged residents of the District of Columbia, Maryland and Northern Virginia to provide family sustaining careers in our industry.
Jermaine Jones, a lifelong Baltimorean, is a leader in both his community and the labor movement. He is a proud graduate of the public school system and went on to pursue a Bachelor of Arts from Syracuse University. After earning his degree, Jermaine worked as a community organizer for LiUNA! (Laborers International Union of North America), working to protect the wages and jobs of low-income families. He also spearheaded and organized community initiatives that helped neighborhoods hold local governments accountable for addressing the concerns and needs of their constituents.
Jermaine worked his way up the ranks at LiUNA! and eventually became Business Manager, a position in which he represented over 1,000 workers in construction. This work allowed him to pursue his passion of protecting the rights of workers and ensuring every person feels safe on the job; and renewed his conviction that all workers be treated with dignity and respect, and receive honest day’s pay for a hard day’s work. His work with LiUNA! led to his election as President of the Metropolitan Baltimore Council AFL-CIO. Under his leadership, the Metro Baltimore Council has been instrumental in several campaigns, including successfully blocking privatization of Baltimore City Water System, supporting the unionization of Johns Hopkins nurses, and increasing Maryland’s minimum wage to $15. Now at the Baltimore/DC Metro Building and Construction Trades Council, one of Jermaine’s goals is to strength the relationship between local community and the Trades; and ensure all citizens throughout the Baltimore Metropolitan area have access to quality jobs consisting of a career path, access to affordable health care, and the opportunity to one day retire with dignity.
Northern Virginia Director
Greg Akerman serves as the Northern Virginia Director for the Building Trades Council. With experience in political campaigns and legislative advocacy, Greg oversees the Building Trades’ political and government affairs programs for Northern Virginia, and works closely with union construction affiliates to pursue favorable legislation and work opportunities. Having worked on his first political campaign in high school, Greg considers educating political candidates about Building Trades issues a passion. Among his proudest accomplishments is helping to successfully pass landmark wage theft prevention legislation in Virginia. In his current role, Greg will continue to help affiliates of the Building Trades grow and fight wage theft in the construction industry.