When partnership turns into family

2003 crew at Pelco
DRTC’s Mobile Workforce team at Pelco in 2003.

Anytime you’ve been in a relationship for 15 years, you’re bound to have endured many good times while creating cherished memories. The relationship between Dale Rogers Training Center (DRTC) and Pelco Products, Inc. is no different.

The two partnered with one another in 2002, expanding DRTC’s Mobile Workforce Program, which sends a team of up to eight individuals with disabilities and a DRTC staff member to various locations to complete projects.

Hard at work

2013: Gary displays a kit he made at Pelco
Gary displays a kit he made at Pelco.

DRTC’s crew has helped package more than 100 various kits for Pelco’s traffic and utility products. These kits, comprised of anywhere from 2-48 pieces, are used to assemble street lights, stop lights and other products made at the traffic and utility hardware manufacturer’s headquarters in Edmond, Oklahoma.

Upon assembly, completed components assembled by DRTC’s skilled workforce are distributed worldwide. Pelco sells products to all 50 states and international markets as well.

Through the 15-year partnership, DRTC’s Mobile Workforce has produced 3.5 million kits for Pelco.

“I don’t know of one kit that ever came back wrong,” said Phil Parduhn, Pelco Co-Owner.

Pelco President & CEO Steve Parduhn added, “There’s been enough kits that every man, woman, child in the state of Oklahoma could have one of these kits.”

15-year anniversary

DRTC presented Pelco with a signed "You Make a Difference" poster framed at Wyman Frame in celebration of 15 years working with the company.
Steve and Phil Parduhn, of Pelco, Inc., display the poster presented during the 15-year partnership celebration.

During a 15-year anniversary celebration, DRTC presented Pelco Products a poster framed at Wyman Frame, a division of DRTC, with the words “You Make a Difference,” signed by members of the Mobile Workforce team.

Pelco’s inclusion of individuals at DRTC is notable, from staff luncheons and activities, signage welcoming the crew, or online as the company demonstrates its commitment to community.

“It’s a joy working with you guys, having you here,” said Steve Parduhn. “Being a part of the Pelco family has been wonderful and we really appreciate it.”

The feeling is mutual from Mobile Workforce participants.

“We are family,” said Chris.

“We do a good job and like working the kits,” said Bonnie.

“We are good employees and we get the kits done,” added Sandra.

“Pelco’s commitment to providing real job opportunities for people with disabilities is something that should be modeled in more places,” said DRTC Executive Director Connie Thrash McGoodwin. “They (Pelco) have included our individuals, making them feel welcomed and part of the team.”

New opportunities

2016: Kathy installing reflective strips to Pelco's traffic light borders.
Kathy installing reflective strips to Pelco’s traffic light borders.

While DRTC’s Mobile Workforce completes the kitting jobs at Pelco’s large facility, others on Dale Rogers Training Center’s main campus complete subcontract work, providing more work opportunities for people with disabilities.

Individuals in DRTC’s Vocational Services Program also help kit items up to 19 pieces. Another subcontracting job with Pelco creates jobs for people with disabilities by having them install reflective tape along the edges of massive traffic light borders.

Bright future

As we celebrate the success we’ve had in the past, we continue to look toward the future.

Dale Rogers Training Center is excited for what’s to come with Pelco and the exciting opportunities for those served to develop skills and earn a paycheck.

DRTC, its clients, and their families are eternally grateful for the partnership, and relationships formed over the past 15 years.

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About DRTC: Dale Rogers Training Center (DRTC) is the oldest and largest community vocational training and employment center for people with disabilities in Oklahoma. With multiple locations in Oklahoma, DRTC trains or employs more than 1,000 people with disabilities per year. Visit us online: DRTC.org.

2017 Employer of the Year

Dale Rogers Training Center (DRTC), Oklahoma’s oldest and largest community vocational training and employment center for people with disabilities, received the Oklahoma City Mayor’s Committee on Disability Concerns’ 2017 Employer of the Year Award.

The annual award honors employers for outstanding hiring practices and employment opportunities for people with disabilities.

Four individuals engaged in various work at Dale Rogers Training Center, with the words "Blazing Trails Building Futures" and DRTC's logo.DRTC provides training or employment opportunities for 1,000 people with disabilities every year. The nonprofit agency, which received it’s third consecutive CARF Accreditation in 2017, offers many programs to provide opportunities for individuals served. Last program year, individuals in the nonprofit’s programs earned $5 million.

Dale Rogers Training Center also operates a Transition School-to-Work program, working with high school juniors and seniors at 17 schools in the Oklahoma City metro to equip them not only with work skills, but also personal and self advocacy skills.

As an entrepreneurial nonprofit, DRTC runs Prism Place (awards, trophies and promotional items division), as well as Wyman Frame (custom picture framing division), and holds custodial and food service contracts at Tinker Air Force Base, FAA and other locations.

About DRTC: Dale Rogers Training Center (DRTC) is the oldest and largest community vocational training and employment center for people with disabilities in Oklahoma. With multiple locations in Oklahoma, DRTC trains or employs more than 1,000 people with disabilities per year. Visit us online: DRTC.org.

DRTC FAA Work Project location honored

Dale Rogers Training Center’s (DRTC) AMP-300 Facility Services Staff, which is the building and maintenance division at the nonprofit’s FAA contract, was honored with the 2017 Keller-Sullivan Award.

The National Coalition of Federal Aviation Employees with Disabilities (NCFAED) presents the award annually to honor employees or supports who go, “above and beyond their expected responsibilities to achieve unique hiring, promotion or advancement results for those who struggle daily with a physical or mental disability.”

Carrie mops at DRTC's FAA work project location.
Carrie works at DRTC’s FAA Work Project

Approximately 36 of DRTC’s 50 FAA contract employees have a documented disability, and they earn above minimum wage while receiving excellent benefits. The team is responsible for cleaning 88 buildings at Mike Monroney Aeronautical Center.

The award presented to contract staff was made at Prism Place, a division of Dale Rogers Training Center specializing in customer acrylic awards, plaques, trophies, medals, promotional items and more.

About DRTC: Dale Rogers Training Center (DRTC) is the oldest and largest community vocational training and employment center for people with disabilities in Oklahoma. With multiple locations in Oklahoma, DRTC trains or employs more than 1,000 people with disabilities per year. Visit us online: DRTC.org.