Newark Local 914’s Inaugural Gala Brings Together Community, Collects Toy Donations

IAM Local 914 is showing its members and the community that it is engaged and an integral part of the Newark, N.J. area.

The local, which represents more than 4,000 members at Newark Liberty International Airport, recently held its first inaugural Black Tie Holiday Gala and Toy Drive. Hundreds of members, IAM leaders and local officials turned out to the Newark Symphony Hall to support the cause.

More than 200 toys were donated to local children as part of event.

“We are trying to make a difference in this Local Lodge,” said IAM Local 914 President Richie Roberts, a 10-year IAM member. “We are moving the Local forward and there’s a lot more that we have planned.”

Roberts thanks Local 914 Human Rights Committee Chair Donyea Hoffman for everything she did to make the gala possible.

As part of the event, Local 914 presented an appreciation award to retiring IAM International President Robert Martinez Jr., for everything he and the IAM did to save the jobs of thousands of IAM airline members during the COVID-19 pandemic. The IAM led the way to pass multiple rounds of the airline Payroll Support Program, which allowed hundreds of thousands of airline workers to stay on the payroll during the pandemic. 

The award was accepted on Martinez’s behalf by IAM Air Transport Territory General Vice President Richie Johnsen, who attended along with IAM Air Transport Territory Chief of Staff Edison Fraser and IAM Airline Coordinator Tom Reagan.

“Local 914 is doing things the right way to represent and bring together our membership,” said Johnsen, who delivered the gala’s keynote address. “Across the Air Transport Territory, we are seeing our members more engaged in their union and their communities.”

Local 914 recognized Martin Melody Law LLC and National Group Protection for their contributions to the local and its membership.

Newark area elected officials also attended, including Newark councilmembers Larry Crump and Patrick Council; a representative for Councilmember Michael Silva; and former councilmembers Gayle Chaneyfield Jenkins and Oscar Sydney James II.

“I’d especially like to thank General Vice President Johnsen, Chief of Staff Fraser and the Air Transport Territory staff from the bottom of my heart,” said Roberts. “They are always there for anything we want to do as a Local.”

The gala comes on the heels of other recent Local 914 events and initiatives, including a breast cancer walk, a member appreciation event, and a local lodge scholarship program.


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