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Local teacher, social advocate to speak in D.C.

By Nick Eaton
Seattle PI

Help save the environment, give jobs to society's forgotten men and jump-start the economy. All at the same time. It's a big task, but that's what Bob Markholt is trying to do.

Help save the environment, give jobs to society's forgotten men and jump-start the economy. All at the same time.

It's a big task, but that's what Bob Markholt is trying to do.

He's the coordinator of the pre-apprenticeship construction training (PACT) program at the Seattle Vocational Institute. And after 11 years, his work helping high school dropouts and former criminals find careers in the construction industry is finally getting national recognition.

"Bob's been doing this work sort of unheralded. He's been working in the trenches," said David West, director of the nonprofit Puget Sound SAGE (Seattle Alliance for Good Jobs and Housing for Everyone).

Markholt traveled to Washington, D.C., this week to be a workshop panelist in a national conference that aims to meld economic recovery with environmental protection. The conference, put on by the Partnership for Working Families nonprofit organization, runs Wednesday through Friday.

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