Special Report

The Most Iconic Job in Every State

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6. Colorado
> Most iconic job: Misc. financial clerks
> Employed in job statewide: 2,240
> Median salary: $44,410
> Share of all U.S. misc. financial clerks in Colo.: 6.9%

Miscellaneous financial clerks are about four times more concentrated in Colorado’s labor force than they are in the nationwide labor force. Such positions are common in the finance and insurance sector and the management of any company or business. Demand for such workers in Colorado is likely due in part Colorado’s far better than average business climate.

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7. Connecticut
> Most iconic job: Lathe and turning machine operators
> Employed in job statewide: 930
> Median salary: $44,140
> Share of all U.S. lathe and turning machine operators in Conn.: 3.1%

Lathe and turning machine tool setters, operators, and tenders operate and maintain machines used in the manufacturing of metal and plastic products. There are about 4,500 manufacturing companies in the state — some of which churn out high-tech products like jet engines and nuclear submarines.

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8. Delaware
> Most iconic job: Meat, poultry, and fish cutters and trimmers
> Employed in job statewide: 5,350
> Median salary: $26,020
> Share of all U.S. meat, poultry, and fish cutters and trimmers in Del.: 3.5%

Workers in Delaware are more than 11 times more likely to work in meat processing than the typical American worker. The relatively high employment in the sector is due in part to the Perdue Farms plant in Milford — the largest organic poultry plant in the United States. Last year, the company announced plans to invest $15 million in the Delaware plant to improve the welfare of poultry in the facility.

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9. Florida
> Most iconic job: Misc. construction and related workers
> Employed in job statewide: 10,580
> Median salary: $36,630
> Share of all U.S. misc. construction and related workers in Fla.: 30.5%

Parts of Florida have experienced a boom in new construction in recent years. A growing population is driving demand for housing, while tourist dollars also help fuel the boom in renovations on non-residential buildings, like retailers and restaurants. Miscellaneous construction workers are about five times more concentrated in Florida’s labor force than that of the U.S. as a whole. While now may be a good time for construction workers in Florida, demand for such workers can fluctuate considerably with the strength of the overall economy. Partially as a result, construction and related workers have some of the worst job security.

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10. Georgia
> Most iconic job: Textile winding and drawing out machine operators
> Employed in job statewide: 11,900
> Median salary: $28,920
> Share of all U.S. textile winding and drawing out machine operators in Ga.: 38.5%

The textile industry has a long history in Georgia, dating all the way back to the state’s colonial origins. Despite rising and falling many times over the centuries — in recent decades Georgia’s textile industry has mostly shrunk in the wake of the NAFTA deal in the 1990s and increased reliance on automation in the 21st century — textile is the most iconic industry in the state. More than one in every three textile machine operators in the United States work in Georgia.

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