Neil Struthers out as CEO of County Building and Construction Trades Council

Neil Struthers is out as CEO of the powerful Santa Clara & San Benito Counties Building & Construction Trades Council, a source tells San Jose Inside. The circumstances of his departure from the labor organization are unclear. The Building and Trades Council oversees the training and representation of 23 craft unions and more than 30,000 construction industry workers employed in Silicon Valley, according to the organization’s website.

According to a source with knowledge of the situation, there are two reasons circulating about Struthers’ resignation. One suggests he resigned over dissatisfaction with resources. It’s not known if that would translate to more money for salaries or personnel. Another possibility is that Struthers left his role, which he has held since 1999, for another opportunity. There has been some criticism of his performance coming from within the development, and possibly labor, community. In December, Struthers was appointed to Gov. Jerry Brown’s California Apprenticeship Council.

In 2012, Struthers had his hat in the ring for a high-profile appointment as chief of the state Building and Construction Trades Council but bowed before the election. Robbie Hunter ended up winning the position uncontested.

Hunter told San Jose Inside that as of Friday afternoon his office had only heard a rumor of Struthers’ resignation but had not received any official word. “Normally we get a letter on something like that, and I only heard about it early this morning,” he said. A call to Robert Baldini, president of the local Building and Construction Trades Council office, went to voicemail.

Another source contacted by San Jose Inside who was unaware of the change in leadership at the local Building and Construction Trades Council said Struthers’ exodus would leave “a huge hole” in industry representation at the local and state level.

Struthers is the husband of State Assemblywoman and Speaker pro Tem Nora Campos (D-San Jose).

UPDATE: Neil Struthers confirmed to the Silicon Valley Business Journal that he submitted his resignation as CEO of the Santa Clara & San Benito Counties Building & Construction Trades Council. His last day will be Jan. 31.

Josh Koehn is a former managing editor for San Jose Inside and Metro Silicon Valley.

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