IAM International President Tom Buffenbarger has announced the appointment of Aerospace Coordinator Don Barker to the position of Organizing Director, effective January 1, 2015.
An IAM member for more than 28 years, Barker initiated into Local Lodge 776A in 1986 as a production worker for General Dynamics (now Lockheed Martin) in Fort Worth, TX. Barker was elected Conductor-Sentinel of his local and later Vice President of the Tarrant County Central Labor Council. Barker went on to serve as an Apprentice Organizer and Special Project Director to coordinate the AFL-CIO’s very successful multi-union San Francisco International Airport (SFO) Organizing Project. He served as a Grand Lodge Representative from 2005 through 2013 before being appointed Aerospace Coordinator on January 1, 2014.
“Don’s experience in so many facets of our union makes him the perfect candidate to head our organizing team,” said IAM International President Tom Buffenbarger. “He’s a true unionist who is well-equipped to help bring the benefits of an IAM contract to many more working families.”
Barker will replace outgoing Organizing Director George Myers, who is retiring after more than 40 years with the IAM. Myers, a Pennsylvania native, held numerous positions within District 98 before becoming part of the Grand Lodge Organizing staff in 1997. He has served as Director of the Organizing Department since 2009.
“We thank George for his service to the IAM through some of the toughest times the labor movement has ever seen,” said Buffenbarger. “Don will inherit a skilled and seasoned team of organizers who owe a great deal to the example and leadership provided by George Myers. His common-sense approach to organizing struck a chord with so many people we are now lucky enough to call Machinists Union brothers and sisters.”