Kelly Stokes is a daily reminder of the value mentorship and the determination to succeed. And today, the 36-year-old International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 1 electrician is the mentor, instilling the drive to succeed in future generations of the IBEW workforce.

Stokes’ first mentor was his mom and she was insightful.  “I grew up kind of geared for electrical work and working with my hands,” said Stokes. “My mother could see it and kept me focused on math and science programs.”

Today, the U.S. strives to improve such skills in the STEM subjects – science, technology, engineering and math. The Electrical Connection, a partnership of IBEW and the St. Louis Chapter of the National Electrical Contractors Associations (NECA), has been a leader supporting STEM education. The Electrical Connection is also involved in advancing job creation, development and careers north of Delmar Boulevard.