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Iron Workers General President Walter Wise has announced he will retire on July 1. The Iron Workers General Executive Board unanimously elected General Secretary Eric Dean to succeed Wise in finishing his term.
The Iron Workers “must always strive to be better; to grow and deliver safer, better lives for future generations of ironworkers,” Wise said. “Change is a needed character that ensures our ability to deliver for our members. It is the dynamo that provides the opportunity for future generations and embraces the energy of new ideas while driving us toward success.” He added, “I have…the desire to explore the future with the knowledge that the Iron Workers will flourish under the guidance of General Secretary Eric Dean and his leadership team.”
“I will double my efforts to keep the Iron Workers strong, growing and a leader in the industry,” added incoming General President Dean. “It is an awesome responsibility for which I am humbled, ready and willing to accept.”
Wise is also stepping down as Labor Co-Chair of the union’s labor-management organization, the Ironworkers Management Progressive Action Cooperative Trust (IMPACT); Dean will be taking over that role, as well.
“Walt Wise embodies the spirit of tripartite cooperation,” said TAUC CEO Steve Lindauer. “As General President, he advocated tirelessly for his fellow Ironworkers, especially in the area of safety. At the same time, he understood that the union construction and maintenance industry can only succeed if unions work closely with contractors and clients to achieve mutually beneficial goals.”
Lindauer added, “We look forward to working with incoming General President Eric Dean to extend Walt’s legacy of success, friendship and trust well into the twenty-first century. It is obvious to me that the Iron Workers International Union has chosen to continue its pursuit of managed change as one of its primary leadership attributes in order to better serve its membership and the industry as a whole.”