IBEW 1245 Business Manager Tom Dalzell received the coveted “Organizing for Young Workers” Award at the Sacramento Central Labor Council’s annual “Salute to Labor” Awards Dinner on Thursday, March 5.
According to the Awards Dinner Program,
Shortly after being elected as IBEW 1245’s chief officer in 2006, Dalzell began to systematically incorporate younger members into the structure of the union, inviting them to become stewards, unit officers and bargaining committee members. With Dalzell at the helm, IBEW 1245 became one of the first local unions in the nation to develop a robust young-worker program in 2009.
Dalzell has worked to mobilize this new generation of union members in their own worksites and communities, and has also provided them with opportunities to work on campaigns in several “battleground” states, including Wisconsin, Ohio, Florida, Alaska and Maine. Over the years, the young worker program has evolved into a unique, cross-generational group of “organizing stewards” — a trained and knowledgeable army of energetic member-activists and leaders who are well versed in discussing why unions matter and how they can make a difference in the lives of working families.
Dalzell’s experience working with the United Farm Workers in the 1970s taught him that organizing is about meeting people where they are, and as a result, IBEW 1245 was one of the first unions to utilize social media as a valuable organizing tool. In 2010, Dalzell pioneered the creation of the “Shame on NV Energy” Facebook page, which quickly drew in 50,000 Facebook fans, making it the largest political organizing page in the state of Nevada at that time.
Photos courtesy of Sacramento Central Labor Council