By DON McINTOSH
Southwest Washington Central Labor Council (SWWACLC) finalized the election of officers at its Jan. 5 Zoom meeting.
The Council, a local body of the AFL-CIO, coordinates union activity for Clark, Skamania, and west Klickitat counties. That includes efforts to elect labor allies to public office, support affiliates in contract battles, and build community at events like an upcoming awards dinner and an annual Labor Day picnic. All told SWWACLC represents 17,000 members of 51 affiliated local unions. And unlike most AFL-CIO central labor councils it has substantial participation by teachers unions that are affiliated under a special national agreement. That includes the locals at Evergreen, Battleground, Camas, Washougal and Vancouver school districts, as well as the Washington Education Association Riverside Uniserv council.
This year, all candidates were unopposed and were declared elected by acclamation. All positions are volunteer and come with two-year terms.
SWWACLC’s top officer is Shannon Myers, who was reelected to an eighth term as president.
Myers, 47, was born Shannon McCormack, and has been a union supporter since childhood in Medford, Oregon, where her father Gene McCormack worked for the Bell telephone company and was a union officer in CWA Local 7903. One of her early memories was walking CWA’s 1981 strike picket line, and getting paid for picket duty in chocolate bars by her dad.
After earning a degree in marketing and economics at what was then Southern Oregon State College in Ashland, Myers says she worked for a string of bad bosses, until she went to work for American Income Life in 2000. Workers there are represented by OPEIU Local 277, and Myers oversaw marketing efforts in seven states. She later went to work at unionized Sunrise Dental, where she was in charge of developing relationships with local unions.
Today, supported by a grant from the national AFL-CIO, Myers is working to revitalize smaller central labor councils around Washington, getting local union members to volunteer for CLC office.
Her husband Dave Myers is an international representative for IBEW’s Ninth District and former leader of the Washington State Building and Construction Trades Council.
Here’s the full list of newly elected officers:
- President Shannon Myers (Machinists Local W536)
- Secretary treasurer Kevin Lux (IBEW Local 48)
- Vice president Shaun Gundert (Evergreen Education Association)
- EBoard Brian Beliel (IATSE Local28); Ed Frazier (IAM Local 63); Didi Gray (Washington State Nurses Association); and Shannon Stull (Laborers Local 335)
- Trustee John Murphy (Bakers Local 364)
- Sergeant at arms Ray Conner (United Association Local 26)