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06.28.18

International Federation of Professional and Technical Engineers Elects New Leadership

Paul Shearon to Become President and Matthew Biggs Secretary-Treasurer

Union represents 80,000 highly-skilled engineers and technical workers, NASA scientists, judges, and state and local government employees in the United States and Canada

ATLANTIC CITY – Delegates to the 59th Convention of the International Federation of Professional and Technical Engineers elected a new president and secretary-treasurer at their convention today. Paul Shearon becomes president of the 80,000-member union, succeeding Greg Junemann, who was first elected to the union’s top position in 2001. Junemann had announced his retirement in a letter to members earlier this year.

Shearon had previously served as the union’s secretary-treasurer and before that had worked as the organizing director for IFPTE's largest local, the Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace (SPEEA/Local 2001), which represents engineers and technical workers at the Boeing Company and other aerospace and defense contractors.

The union’s legislative director, Matthew Biggs, will become secretary-treasurer, the second highest-ranking officer in the union.

“These are difficult times for workers, including the professionals we represent in the private and public sector. However, I believe that the combination of organizing and legislative experience that Matt and I bring to the table will help our members push back against the unfair attacks on workers and enable our members and their local unions to develop new strategies to improve their workplaces and better their lives.”

In the past two weeks, Shearon and Biggs have worked with the union’s lawyers and leaders of other unions to bring a lawsuit against the Trump administration over three executive orders, signed by the president, designed to limit the rights of federal employees, including many IFPTE members. Yesterday, Shearon also was widely quoted on CNN and many other news sites in reference to the Supreme Court’s highly political Janus v. AFSCME decision that crimps the ability of public sector unions to assess fees for their services from non-members who are in the union’s bargaining units at the state and local levels of government.

In recent years, Shearon has played a central role in the union’s successful organizing efforts at the Tennessee Valley Authority and the Legal Services Corporation, and other campaigns in the United States and Canada. Prior to coming to the Washington headquarters, he ran successful organizing drives in Seattle and Wichita, bringing union representation to over 5,000 employees. During SPEEA's famous 40-day strike in 2000, where strikers carried signs that displayed the words “No Nerds No Birds,” Shearon was the one who developed the strike plan.

Before working for the union, Shearon was employed as an engineer for the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Lockheed Missiles and Space Company Advanced Systems Development, Stanford Research Institute, and the Boeing Company.

Across the United States and Canada, IFPTE represents 80,000 highly-skilled workers in both the public and private sectors. The union is an affiliate of the AFL-CIO. More information can be found at www.IFPTE.org.

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International Federation of Professional and Technical Engineers Elects New Leadership at IFPTE's 59th Convention

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