Thank you all of our sponsors, to every union local that placed an ad, purchased a table, or bought a ticket, to every individual who volunteered or attended the 2014 Union Hall of Honor--because of your support we had a tremendous evening!
Read a transcript of AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka's speech here.
Now more than ever, members of public and private sector unions must work together to stand up against the barrage of anti-union attacks typified by the erosion of public sector union rights in states like Wisconsin, Indiana and Michigan. The Illinois Labor History Society honors the men and women who worked tirelessly for the union rights we have today. Their legacy inspires a renewal of our commitment to organize a united defense of those rights -- an injury to one is an injury to all.
The 2014 Inductees into the Union Hall of Honor
Secretary-Treasurer of the Illinois AFL-CIO for 15 years and then its President for a decade until 1989. Robert Gibson was instrumental in winning the long battle for public sector union rights which culminated in the 1983 collective bargaining laws for public employees.
Connell F. Smith
Secretary-Treasurer of Laborers' Local 773 in Southern Illinois, serving from the Local's first charter in 1940 to 1976. Connell Smith threw open the doors of Local 773 and helped build a widely diverse downstate Local representing workers in both the private and public sectors.
Regina V. Polk
Her life tragically cut short in a 1983 plane crash, Regina Polk was one of the first female organizers on the International Brotherhood of Teamsters' staff. She pioneered the organizing of clerical employees, predominantly women, from both the private and public sectors into IBT Local 743.