Celebrating Black History: IAM Spotlights Richard Jackson

The IAM Human Rights Department has taken on its own identity within the IAM, with the sole purpose of advancing equality and justice. 

This February, the IAM Human Rights Department is featuring accomplished IAM members of the Black community in celebration of Black History Month. 

IAM members being honored for Black History Month are among the many trailblazers in our union.

Richard Jackson
Nominated by: IAM Western Territory

Richard Jackson was hired into the Boeing Co. as an assembly electrician in 1989 and became a union Steward in 1997.  Around 2000, he was chosen to be a part of the newly negotiated Work Transfer Group, which was charged with fighting to keep work within our membership that Boeing sought to offload. Jackson also held Local positions as an auditor and a District Council delegate.  

In May 2007, Jackson was appointed Business Representative, and in 2008 during District elections, he ran and secured a position as a Business Representative. In 2014, newly-elected District President Jon Holden appointed Jackson his Chief of Staff. In that role, Jackson led negotiations for many contracts outside of Boeing, as well as represented members at NAS Whidbey Island. Jackson also chaired District 751’s Human Rights Committee, which encouraged more people of color to get involved with their union. He also took on community service projects, such as presenting workshops during the annual Seattle MLK celebration, which is aimed at raising awareness on the benefits of union membership.  

In 2020, Jackson was encouraged to run for the position of District Secretary-Treasurer and was nominated and chosen as the first African American to hold this position. He also serves as Secretary-Treasurer of the Washington Machinists Council and as one of three IAM delegates to the AFL-CIO.

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