IAM Southern Territory and District 75 leaders recently visited Decatur and Huntsville Ala. to tour United Launch Alliance (ULA) and Boeing facilities where IAM Local 44 and 2766 members build state-of-the-art spacecraft and missile defense systems.
“This was an opportunity to go and meet members at two tremendous facilities,” said IAM Southern Territory Chief of Staff Craig Martin. “These members are building rockets and missile systems. It’s a proud thing to see. The skill set of these workers–IAM members–at both facilities is very impressive.”
The delegation included Martin, Southern Territory Grand Lodge Representative Javier Almazon, District 75 President and Directing Business Representative Stephen Jordan, District 75 Business Representative Jamie Littlefield, and District 75 Organizer Phillip French. Local 44 President Rickie Langford, Chief Steward Anthony Michael, and stewards Brian Richardson and Chris Mullins gave the tour at United Launch Alliance.
“The stewards all spoke with Chief of Staff Martin, which is really helpful,” said Littlefield, who visits the two facilities every week as the servicing representative. “Being a steward is probably the most thankless job in the world, and to have a real leader come to talk with you and answer questions makes a big difference. It really inspires and bolsters people holding that position.”
The Southern Territory is planning more site visits like this where stewards and members can talk with leaders in the territory about building an active membership and the problems they face in right-to-work states like Alabama.
“The members are very proud of what they do and the ULA shop is 98.99% union density, in a shop where they don’t have to be that way,” said Martin.
“These visits were important for working together and building the relationships with both companies,” said Jordan. “The companies’ Human Resources managers were with us, and it did a world of good to bring the territory leadership in front of the members. It helps with morale.”
IAM Southern Territory Grand Lodge Representative Javier Almazon, Local Lodge 44 President Rickie Langford, Local Lodge 44 Steward Chris Mullins, District Lodge 75 Phillip French, District Lodge 75 President and Directing Business Representative Stephen P. Jordan, Local Lodge 44 Chief Steward Anthony Michael, Southern Territory Chief of Staff Criag Martin, District Lodge 75 Business Representative Jamie Littlefield, Local Lodge 44 Steward Brian Richardson, United Launch Alliance Human Resources Steven Smith.
IAM District Lodge 75 Business Representative Jamie Littlefield, Chief of Staff Craig Martin, District Lodge 75 President and Directing Business Representative Stephen P. Jordan, Southern Territory Grand Lodge Representative Javier Almazon, Local 2766 Chief Steward, and Boeing Labor Relations Ms. Lee-Cassie Walls.