About Us

The History of Canton JATC

The Electrical Trades Center of Greater Stark County originated in the late 1940s. At that time, apprentices were paid a starting wage of $0.25 per hour. The majority of the first apprentices were US Military Veterans. Apprentices were paid to attend school, a practice that has since been discontinued.

The Electrical Training Alliance,  formerly the National Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee for the Electrical Industry (NJATC), was established in 1947 to train electrical workers through cooperation between labor and management. Local organizations of The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) and the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) appointed contractor and union representatives to administer training funds. Apprenticeship Standards were adopted based on industry and US Department of Labor guidelines.

Early Canton JATC apprenticeship instructors included Paul Huth and Don Colaner. Mr. Huth taught apprentices from 1947 until his retirement in 1982. Mr. Colaner, a 1946 graduate of Canton Timken High School, evolved from apprentice to president of the Canton area’s largest electrical contractor. He also served as an instructor from 1960 until 1985. Along with many other dedicated instructors, both men contributed to the skill and employability of union electricians in the greater Stark County area.

Since the inception of the Canton JATC, classes were held at local vocational schools. Due to the need for increased training and replacement of journey level workers, the JATC purchased the property at their present location on Wales Avenue in Jackson Township.

The training center is now equipped to meet the growing demands for highly skilled and productive electrical workers.

  • The Electrical Training Alliance was created from the legacy of the National Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee (NJATC).  The NJATC was founded in 1941 by the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) and served for over 73 years as the training arm of the IBEW and NECA. The Electrical Training Alliance is a nonprofit organization that draws upon an extraordinary number of diverse partnerships within the electrical industry, all committed and devoted to training the next generation of electrical workers. The Electrical Training Alliance consists of 300 joint apprenticeship and training centers in the United States and Canada, over 100 electrical industry manufacturer’s and training partners and a vast network of public and private educational institutions from secondary school level to the university level.


For those interested in a career as an IBEW electrician, visit www.electricprep.com for additional education, interview experiences, and preparation for a successful career.


electricaltrainingalliance-njatc IBEW NECA Helmets to Hardhats


Training Director – Damus Cole

Office Manager – Barb Murphy

Chairman – Fred Miller

Secretary – Jason Walden

Committee Members –  Aaron Brown, John Fether, Jon Kuhnash, Larry Wood