Boston, MA IBEW Local 103 has named Kenell Broomstein to a key leadership post as a Business Agent for the Boston area. Broomstein becomes the first woman of color to fulfill a business agent role at any major Boston construction union. The business agent represents the union membership in a range of capacities including generating work opportunities and engaging with community, industry, and political stakeholders.
“Kenell has been a tremendous addition to our leadership team,” said Lou Antonellis, business manager, IBEW Local 103. “Her dedication to the work and to the mission off the union has been clear since she was elected President of her apprenticeship class. It has been remarkable to watch her rise through the ranks and assume this role through which she will have a tremendous platform to advance critical issues of equity within the construction industry and the community.”
Broomstein’s professional accomplishments include significant work on projects including Fenway Residence Inn, the Boston Tea Party Museum, Olmstead Place in Jamaica Plain, and Hub 25 near the JFK/UMass train station.
Broomstein attended Lynn Technical High School where she began studying the electrical trade. She graduated in 2004 and became an IBEW apprentice in 2006. She was elected vice president and recording secretary of her apprentice council, emerging early as a natural leader.
“I’m honored to have this opportunity to formally represent my coworkers and my union through this leadership role,” Broomstein said. “The union has been a crucial launching pad for my career and I want everyone to see the value that the union brings to the work, to the community, and to improving so many lives across the region. I am excited about the chance this will provide for me to help more young people, from all Boston neighborhoods, change their lives by choosing a career in our industry.”
Broomstein has been a stalwart advocate for expanding opportunities in the trades to under-represented demographics. A Dorchester resident, she is helping to organize and recruit young people of all backgrounds into the labor movement. She is a member of the IBEW International Women’s Committee and is passionate about inspiring young women to take on a career in the trades.
She is focused on key gender equity issues within the industry such as having extended maternity leave, clean break areas for pumping milk, and breastfeeding opportunities for women on the job. She has inspired many girls and women to pursue training and careers in the trades through speeches at area schools and technical summits.
Outside of work, Broomstein is the single mother of two boys. She overcame many obstacles as a teen mother to excel in her apprenticeship and on the job. She also finds time to give back, as an organizer for the Helmets to Hard Hats program, helping to transition veterans into the building trades. She also volunteers for Habitat for Humanity, and as a Team Mom for Dorchester Youth Football Pop Warner. She remains involved in the community where she grew up, serving on the Advisory Board of Lynn Technical High School.
In addition, Broomstein has been leading key union campaigns both within the industry and in the community. She has been a major presence in efforts to improve working conditions for all workers, not just union members.
Speaking about her experience in the building trades, Broomstein said, “Everywhere I go, I tell young people that the time to consider a career in the building trades is now. In my role as a business agent, I am helping to bring work to my fellow members and also have the opportunity to be a role model for the next generation of women in the trades.”
IBEW Local 103’s mission is to provide Greater Boston’s developers with the best trained, most efficient, safest electricians and telecommunications specialists, while fostering our Union’s values of economic fairness, equal opportunity and charitable giving in the communities where we work, live, and raise our families. Our unwavering commitment to professional excellence is personified by the recently built addition to our Joint Apprenticeship Training facility. The Local 103 JATC is among the most advance electrical apprenticeship programs in the country. Working for better wages, better benefits, and fair working conditions is only a small part of our Union’s focus. Local 103 members take pride in giving back our time and expertise to causes and charities serving those less fortunate throughout our jurisdiction.