Ohio Machinists Welcome Former Gov. Strickland to Honor IP Buffenbarger

From left, Ohio State Council of Machinists Vice Presidents Duane Lukens and Nick Kent, President Dean Wright, former Ohio Governor Ted Strickland, IAM International President Tom Buffenbarger, OSCM Secretary-Treasurer Dennis Wright, OSCM Political Director Neil Douglas and OCSM Vice President Jude Kollstedt.

Former Ohio Governor, and candidate for Senate, Ted Strickland was on hand to honor IAM International President Tom Buffenbarger at the annual fall meeting of the Ohio State Council of Machinists (OSCM) in Columbus, OH.

Former OH Governor Ted Strickland and IAM International President Tom Buffenbarger at the Ohio State Council of Machinists annual meeting in Columbus, OH.

“Tom Buffenbarger is a hero, at least as far as I’m concerned,” said Strickland.  “I’ve known Tom for almost 30 years, and he represents the best of organized labor, and as a former Congressman, Governor, but more so, as an Ohioan I’m extremely proud of what he’s become, what he’s done with his life, how he has contributed to the common good, fought the fight, remaining a person of great integrity doing so. I’ve always admired him, he never forgot where he came from, and we’re really going to miss him.”

OSCM President T. Dean Wright welcomed Buffenbarger and Strickland and noted the meeting was the last Buffenbarger would be attending as IAM International President. The event coincided with the 14th Anniversary of the 9-11 attacks, and Wright asked delegates to honor the memory of fallen IAM brothers and sisters, as well as all the victims of the terrorist attacks on U.S. soil.

“I am honored to be here tonight,” said Buffenbarger. “The Ohio State Council of Machinists has been a big part of most of my adult life, and I look forward to many more years of being a part of it.”

The delegates and representatives also took part in a training session and capped the night off with a Texas Hold’em poker tournament that raised more than $500 for Guide Dogs of America. Nearly $10,000 was collected for the Machinists Non-Partisan Political League.