Tulsa Technical Training Program Gets $250,000 Donation

Feb 26, 2014

(From left) TCW graduate Brandon Fields, Tulsa Mayor Dewey Bartlett, TCW Program Director with Madison Strategies Karen Pennington, TCW graduates Richard Calhoun and Porcha Thomas, and George Kaiser Family Foundation Executive Director Ken Levit pose Wednesday with a giant check made out for the amount of The Common Bond Foundation's donation to the workforce development program.
Credit Matt Trotter / KWGS

A $250,000 donation will allow a program that trains workers for in-demand technical jobs to help more people in Tulsa this year.

Transportation Connection WorkAdvance trains workers in four cities nationwide for transportation, manufacturing and aerospace jobs. Karen Pennington is with Madison Strategies, the company that implemented Tulsa’s TCW program. She said they can give more unemployed and underemployed Tulsans opportunities this year.

"We look forward to training and placing over 120 additional individuals here in 2014, and all of this is made possible from the continuing funding we receive from the George Kaiser Family Foundation and the Tulsa Community Foundation, and now from the very generous contribution of The Common Bond Foundation," Pennington said.

The Common Bond Foundation is a nonprofit philanthropy group in Jenks.

TCW came to Tulsa in 2011 and has since placed 250 people into full-time jobs. Mayor Dewey Bartlett says program graduates are working in areas that highlight the region’s strengths.

"Employers will know that they can come to Tulsa, Okla. That they can relocate their businesses in Tulsa, Okla.," Bartlett said. "They can grow an existing business in Tulsa, Okla., because we have the trained and trainable employees that want the job."

TCW will offer classes in several skills, including computer machining and welding.