By Jane LaTour
About
the
Author
Sisters in the Brotherhoods
Photo by Jon Bloom
Photo by
Clarence Elie-Rivera
Stationary Engineer
Plumber
Elevator Mechanic
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What's Inside?
Praise for Sisters
Home
Table of Contents
Writing
Tradeswomen              
into History
Rosie’s Daughters
United Tradeswomen:
 Organizing for the
 Guaranteed Right to Work
 In Any Job
Construction
The Agencies
“Sticking to the Union”
Uncivil Service at the Board of
 Education
Double Vision: Breaking Down
 Doors at the FDNY
Learning to Labor on High Steel
When Worlds Collide: The First
 Women in Electricians’
 Local 3
“Ticket to Ride”
Technology
From Economics to Electronics:
 The Making of an Activist
That’s Just the Way It Was:
 AT&T and the Struggle for
 Equal Opportunity
Transportation
Woman on the Move
Moving Forward
Against the Grain
Getting Past Pioneering
Epilogue
Where Are They Now?
Firefighter
Ironworker
Electrician
In 1982, even before
Probationary Firefighter
Brenda Berkman’s arrival
at her first assignment,
firefighters had already
formed opinions about her.
“It was impossible for me
to keep a low profile,” she
said.  
Read more.
...Yvone Maitin provides
an answer to an important
question: despite the horrific
treatment that many
women...have experienced
from their unions, why is it
that so many continue to
hold a very pro-union
position?  
Read more.
Joi Beard was born into
a blue-collar family in
Kentucky...In 1979, she
entered the Local 369
IBEW apprenticeship pro-
gram in Louisville. “Back
then, only two women
were in the trade down
there...”
Read more.
...Janine Blackwelder
became the first “cowgirl”
of the sky in New York
City....standing 5 feet, 7
inches tall, slender, with a
heart-shaped face and a
pixie haircut, she didn’t fit
the popular image of an
ironworker.  
Read more.
Margarita Suarez
studied computer science
in college and then went
to work in the field....
Eventually she decided to
take up a trade and
applied to become an
apprentice elevator
mechanic.  
Read more.
Elaine Ward saw a
journeyman’s card as...a
passport to a trade that
would enable her to earn a
good living and to travel...
she couldn’t foresee the
hardships she would
undergo trying to find
work...
Read more.
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Photos © Gary Schoichet