Mayor James F. Kenney Appoints Two to Philadelphia Works Board of Directors
October 17, 2018

New appointees bring impressive backgrounds on workforce development to the table.


Philadelphia Works, the city’s workforce development board, has announced the appointment of two accomplished, local professionals to its Board of Directors. Sheila Ireland, the current director of the Mayor’s Office of Workforce Development, will be accepting one of the appointments. The second will go to labor expert and Business Manager of the Laborers’ International Union of North America (LIUNA) Local Union 57, Esteban Vera. Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney appointed them to serve 3 year terms on the Philadelphia Works Board.

The Board of Philadelphia Works consists of a mandated mix of leaders from the business, non-profit, labor and government sectors, and is in place to make the strategic and financial decisions to provide extensive job training and networking resources to every Philadelphian. That professional education provides local businesses with qualified employees, and it provides residents with gainful employment.

“The staff, the stakeholders, and I would like to welcome two new appointees to our Board of Directors,” said H. Patrick Clancy, President and CEO of Philadelphia Works. “Their extensive backgrounds in skills training and workforce development will give us an advantage in our continued mission to improve this city’s professional talent pool, and to connect that pool to local employers.”

The new appointees to Philadelphia Works’ Board of Directors are:

Sheila Ireland Director of the Mayor’s Office of Workforce Development

Sheila Ireland has over 25 years of workforce development experience across several different fields. Ireland has worked for non-profit organizations, healthcare outfits, consulting firms, the government, and manufacturing companies to improve employee talent and opportunity. She has taken commanding roles in several of the city’s workforce development initiatives. Most recently, Ireland served as the Deputy Director for Diversity & Inclusion for Rebuild, which is the city’s plan to invest millions of dollars into our parks, libraries, and recreation centers. When Ireland was selected to direct the Office of Workforce Development, Mayor Kenney called her “uniquely qualified for the position” because of her prior experience.

Esteban Vera Business Manager of LIUNA Local Union 57

After a six month Army deployment in Bosnia, Esteban Vera entered the civilian workforce as Heavy and Highway Construction Laborer. He earned that position through the Laborer’s Local Union 57, and ever since that first job, he has worked for his Union. Vera’s commitment to Local Union 57 and the labor movement has inspired him to fight for better working conditions and better pay for his fellow Union members. Vera has not looked back, advancing to several leadership roles in Local Union 57. He has even earned a seat on the Board of Directors of the Philadelphia Council AFL-CIO. Vera has also done substantial volunteer work around the city, like setting up equipment for the March of Dimes, and repairing the dangerous schoolyard of Vare-Washington Elementary school. Esteban Vera’s substantial experience with local Labor Unions promises to be advantageous in carrying out the goals set by Philadelphia Works.

Philadelphia Works is the city’s Workforce Development Board, investing in solutions and services to grow Philadelphia’s economy by connecting employers to workforce talent and career seekers to jobs. We influence the public policies that support economic growth, and optimize funding and resources to invest in regional solutions to build a skilled and thriving workforce. For more information about our dedicated board members and staff, workforce research, labor market data, services and initiatives, and to view success stories, please visit

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