Franklin, TN -(AmmoLand.com)- The Union Sportsmen’s Alliance (USA) and Tennessee American Water held a public ribbon cutting ceremony at Harrison Bay State Park Sept. 3, to mark the completion of a new 63-by-18-ft. boat shed built by union volunteers over the summer.
Chattanooga area Building Trades volunteers from Iron Workers Local 704, Utility Workers Local 121, Carpenters Local 74, Insulators Local 46 and Electrical Workers Local 175, as well as volunteers from Communication Workers Local 3802, constructed the shed. Volunteers from the Friends of Harrison Bay put the finishing touches on the project with a little help from a family that visits the park so often, they decided to lend a hand.
“My kids have been using these boats all summer, so we felt it was right to volunteer to help finish the shed,” said local resident and mother of eight, Stephanie Pyles. “Me and the kids helped stain (the exterior of the shed) and spread gravel.”
The project is the result of a joint effort between the USA’s Work Boots on the Ground volunteer conservation program and the American Water Charitable Foundation’s Building Better Communities initiative, which awarded the USA a $25,000 grant to support three 2015 conservation projects that improve public access to water-based recreation activities in Chattanooga, Tennessee; Peoria, Illinois; and Charleston, West Virginia.
“We are thrilled to celebrate the completion of our first joint project with American Water,” said USA CEO and Executive Director Fred Myers. “This is our first charitable foundation grant, and it is instrumental in helping us take our conservation efforts to the next level. I’m certain this partnership will continue to grow and, together, we will tackle many more community projects.”
The importance of the project and partnership between the USA and American Water was evident:
“This endeavor brought together folks from all across the community, including young children and skilled union trades members,” said Tennessee American Water President Deron Allen. “Both American Water and the USA encourage and support outdoor activities as well as the proper use and protection of the environment for future generations.”
After the ribbon cutting, Myers and Tennessee American Water Director of Operations Kevin Rogers fixed a commemorative plaque to the shed’s wall before no less than five Pyles children, assisted by park rangers, took to the water in kayaks, canoes and on paddleboards.
About the Union Sportsmen’s Alliance:
The Union Sportsmen’s Alliance (USA) is a union-dedicated, 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization whose members hunt, fish, shoot and volunteer their skills for conservation. The USA is uniting the union community through conservation to preserve North America’s outdoor heritage.
About Work Boots on the Ground:
Work Boots on the Ground is the Union Sportsmen’s Alliance’s flagship conservation program that brings together union members willing to volunteer their time and expertise to conservation projects that improve public access to the outdoors, conserve wildlife habitat, restore America’s parks and mentor youth about the outdoors to carry on America’s outdoor heritage. USA’s Work Boots on the Ground program works closely with federal, state and local agencies and other conservation groups to provide manpower needed to complete critical projects that may otherwise go undone.
About the American Water Charitable Foundation:
Established in 2010 with a founding contribution from American Water, the American Water Charitable Foundation is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that provides a formal way to demonstrate the company’s ongoing commitment to being a good neighbor, citizen, and contributor to the communities where American Water and its employees live, work and operate. The Foundation helps support American Water employee-identified nonprofit endeavors.
More information can be found online at amwater.com/corporate-responsibility or on Facebook.
About Tennessee American Water:
Tennessee American Water, a subsidiary of American Water (NYSE: AWK), is the largest investor-owned water utility in the state, providing high-quality and reliable water services to more than 370,000 people in Tennessee and northern Georgia. Founded in 1886, American Water is the largest and most geographically diverse publicly traded U.S. water and wastewater utility company. With headquarters in Voorhees, N.J., the company employs 6,800 dedicated professionals who provide regulated and market-based drinking water, wastewater and other related services to an estimated 15 million people in 47 states and Ontario, Canada.
More information can be found at www.tennesseeamwater.com.