Hello! As I’m writing this message to you the calendar says it’s Spring, we are almost 25% through another year. I hope this message finds everyone safe as we continue to endure the COVID-19 Pandemic.
I would like to start my message to you with a huge, heartfelt THANK YOU! from all of the Officers and Agents. Thank you to the members for putting your trust in us for another three years of guiding your Local Union. We are honored, and humbled, by the support of the members. Attaining 66% of the votes cast in the Local Union election was a strong approval rating by the members for our service, and we look forward to continuing to provide you with the same level of service you have come to expect from us.
Looking ahead there is much to do. Employers never let up their attacks on Organized Labor; likewise, we will not let up on defending our members rights under their respective Collective Bargaining Agreements or Federal and State laws. Strength is in numbers and we will continue to strive to grow our Local Union. Increased membership shows all employers we are serious in our endeavors for the working people who we represent, and who wish to be represented by us. Additionally, increased membership translates to increased financial resources to take on employers who look to challenge us. In 2020, we successfully negotiated over 20 “white paper” contracts in house and on time despite the challenges caused by the pandemic. The protocols we instituted with the employers for the safety of the members, staff, and ourselves served us well and we will continue this effort with the contracts due to expire in 2021.
This year is an important year for members of Teamsters Local 776. This is an election year for the International Brotherhood of Teamsters. International President Jim Hoffa is retiring at the end of his current term, ending twenty-five years as International President. In addition to electing a new General President, members will be electing a new General Secretary- Treasurer, Regional and At-Large Vice President positions and other International Officers.
Concerning the IBT election, I am proud to report the current Officers, Business Agents, and I will be representing Local 776 as Delegates and Alternate Delegates to the IBT convention later this year. Our Local held nominations for convention delegate candidates in February 2021. At that time, our team nominated candidates and alternate candidates recognized as the “Thompson-Hicks Slate.” Hearing no other nominations, the election officer declared us the winner of the delegate election by acclamation. It was another vote of confidence from the members; an uncontested election, attesting to their satisfaction with our running of the Local Union. Additional information concerning the delegate election and the International Convention can be found elsewhere in the newsletter.
With the beginning of our current term of office on January 1st we had some changes in personnel. Business Agents Ed Sutton and Tim Turek chose not to run for re-election in 2020. I would like to thank them for their dedication and service to the membership and the Local Union. With the departure of Ed and Tim, we welcome Mark Cicak and Shane Weaver as newly elected Business Agents. Mark took over the duties and responsibilities of Ed Sutton and Shane inherited Tim’s workload. Once the election had been finalized, both Ed and Tim began working closely with their respective replacements to insure a smooth transition once they left office. Additionally, The Local Union Executive Board appointed Mark Andreozzi as a Business Agent. Mark has prior experience as a Business Agent, serving under former Local 776 Presidents Dan Virtue, Carlos Ramos, and Robert Snyder. Prior to his appointment Mark had been working as an organizer for the IBT with an emphasis on organizing health care workers in the Correctional system. Mark A, Mark C, and Shane will introduce themselves to you later in the newsletter.
It’s shaping up to be another busy year at Local 776 but the one constant is that you, the members are part of a successful, financially sound, and united Local Union. We are 100% committed to providing you with the best possible representation you deserve in the workplace, along with social activities for you and your families to enjoy with each other and your Union Brothers and Sisters. Please monitor our website, your Union bulletin boards, and future issues of the newsletter for important information concerning our planned activities and any changes due to the pandemic.
Ed Thompson, President
Teamsters Local 776