Image provided by: University of Oregon Libraries; Eugene, OR
About East Oregonian : E.O. (Pendleton, OR) 1888-current | View This Issue
TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 20, 2018
143rd Year, No. 25
WINNER OF THE 2018 ONPA GENERAL EXCELLENCE AWARD
Staff photo by Kathy Aney
Since Doug Wagner trained as an electrician, four other family members followed suit. Flanking Wagner (middle) are son-in-
law Jeremy Kile, daughter Angie Kile, wife Pat and grandson Cody Kile, who is apprenticing as an electrician.
Family of electricians
shares high-voltage career
electricians and other
By KATHY ANEY
lectricity courses through
Jeremy Kile’s family tree.
Kile is an electrician.
His son, Cody, is apprenticing as
an electrician. His wife, Angie,
works as a locomotive electri-
cian for Union Pacific Railroad.
Her father and mother, Doug
and Pat Wagner, are semi-retired
At holiday dinners, it is hard
to avoid shop talk, try as they
“The conversation always
turns to electricity eventually,”
In addition, another Wagner
daughter, Laura Stone, works as
estimator and managing partner
at Hendon Electric in Hermiston.
This Hermiston family of
electricians is a window into a
Staff photo by Kathy Aney
Cody Kile checks the voltage in one of the electrical panels at
Good Shepherd Medical Center during time as an electrician
apprentice with Gordon’s Electric.
profession that is very much in
“Right now, because the
economy is on a high note, there
is a lot of construction,” Jeremy
said. “And where there is con-
struction, there’s a need for elec-
tricians. There’s a nationwide
shortage, not just of electricians,
but in all trades.”
“The recession really hit the
trades hard,” said Jennifer Hills,
who manages the apprentice-
ship program at Blue Moun-
tain Community College. “A lot
of little employers went away
during the recession.”
Electricians are especially in
demand. They come to Uma-
tilla County from as far away as
Portland to fill the gap, Kile and
Regional Economist Dal-
las Fridley said electricians
made the list of the top 20 dif-
ficult-to-fill vacancies in Oregon
in 2017, the latest data on the
topic. The construction industry
in general showed vacancies in
every region of the state.
“There were an estimated
627 vacancies for electricians in
2017, and 502 (85 percent) were
difficult to fill,” Fridley said.
Kile’s son, Cody, 20, will
enter the ranks of licensed elec-
tricians as soon as he success-
fully completes four years of
classroom training at BMCC
and an apprenticeship with Gor-
don’s Electric. The second-year
student, who grew up helping
his dad do electrical projects
around the house, remembers
one day when he and his father
readied a friend’s home for an
“We were redoing the out-
lets and cover plates — doing a
trim out,” Cody said. “I remem-
ber being a 16-year-old and my
Coalition nears clean slate
with Rivoli interior
By ANTONIO SIERRA
Staff photo by Kathy Aney
Starter Wade Miracle waves a driver forward to the start line during
Saturday’s Mudfest at the Eastern Oregon Trade and Event Center.
More photos of the Mudfest on 8A.
Following a candidate search
that’s lasted well over a year, the
Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla
Indian Reservation announced that
it has hired Ted Wright to become
its next executive director.
According to a press release
from the tribes, Wright has 15 years
of experience as a chief executive
for tribal governments in Alaska,
Washington, and California.
Wright got an endorsement from
one of his future bosses, Board of
Trustees Chairman Gary Burke.
“The BOT is pleased Dr. Ted
Wright has accepted our offer to be
the new Executive Director,” Burke
said in a statement.
An enrolled member of the
Tlingit and Haida Tribes of Alaska,
Wright will be responsible for
managing the day-to-day opera-
tions of the tribal government and
Wright has a master’s degree in
educational administration and a
Ph.D in education theory and pol-
icy from Pennsylvania State Uni-
versity, where he focused on tribal
political dynamics and economic
In addition to his experience in
government, Wright has also been
the manager of the American Indian
Leadership program at Penn State
and the vice-president of Haskell
Indian Nations University.
When Wright starts the job on
Dec. 3, he will be the tribes’ first
permanent executive director since
After former Executive Director
Dave Tovey resigned in Februrary
2017, former deputy director Deb
Croswell assumed his duties on an
interim basis while they started the
Croswell stayed on until at the
end of 2017, when she resigned and
took a job with the tribally owned
Cayuse Technologies, causing the
CTUIR to appoint Communica-
tions Director Chuck Sams as the
next interim executive director.
The tribes made another tempo-
rary switch in March, when they
assigned Sams back to his previous
role and named Natural Resources
Director Eric Quaempts to the top
Sams said Quaempts will revert
to his natural resources director
position when Wright takes charge.
The Rivoli Theater in Pendleton
is a shell of its former self, but that’s
the way the nonprofit overseeing its
restoration wants it at the moment.
Since 2017, the Rivoli Resto-
ration Coalition has contracted with
Kirby Nagelhout Construction Co.
of Bend to gut the historic theater
at 351 S. Main St., as the coali-
tion moves toward transforming the
vacant movie theater into a modern
performing arts center.
By Friday, it was clear that Kirby
Nagelhout was successful in mak-
ing the Rivoli into an open-floor
Mostly gone were the balcony
and the network of rooms near the
entrance, the outlines of stairs on
the walls one of the only visual
reminders of the structure that once
stood in the spot.
Jason Terry of Kirby Nagelhout
said as many as four workers with
heavy equipment have been on-site
to demolish the interior. But on Fri-
day, a two-person crew was dis-
mantling the last bits of the balcony
and first-floor rooms.
Terry said they were aiming to
complete the demolition by the end
of the month.
Like a game of Jenga with
higher stakes, Terry said the crews
had to work intelligently and pains-