Michael O’Brien (USW Local 6500, Sudbury, ON, Kill the Autocrat),
Mike O’Brien (OB) is a member of USW Local 6500. He cut his teeth in union activism during the year-long strike at Vale-Inco in Sudbury, ON. OB is the front man for the Canadian anarchist hip hop group Kill the Autocrat and has toured around North America performing at major mobilizations and picket lines.
Stephen Lech (USW Local 7-669, Honeywell Metropolis, IL)
Stephen Lech is the President of USW Local 7-669 in Metropolis, IL. Lech got his start in union activism during the 14 month lockout at Honeywell’s uranium conversion plant in Metropolis and helped create a dynamic campaign against one of the largest defense contractors in the world. His local union received the Karen Silkwood award for their emphasis on fighting unsafe work conditions at Honeywell. Stephen merged old-school techniques with cutting edge technology to drive back demands from management by utilizing social media, mass texting, and live stream video along with traditional grass roots methods. Stephen has brought his unionism all over the country and around the world, helping workers bring the fight to management in places as far away as Belgium, Germany and Mexico.
Christian Mussleman (USW Local 7-669, Honeywell Metropolis, IL)
Christian Musselman is the Recording Secretary of USW Local 7-669 in Metropolis, IL. During the 14 month lockout at Honeywell in Metropolis, he quickly went from rank-and-file member to one of their leaders in the struggle. Christian’s passion for workers’ rights and social justice helped them to gain widespread support from the community during their dispute. Christian is affectionately known as a “road warrior” by his peers because at the drop of a hat he’s known to show up at far-away struggles to help their cause.
Anne Feeney (Singer/Songwriter),
Based in Pittsburgh, PA, Anne Feeney is the granddaughter of an intrepid mineworkers’ organizer, who also used music to carry the message of solidarity to working people. After two decades of community activism and regional performances at rallies, Anne took her message on the road. Since 1991 Anne has traveled to the frontlines in 42 states, as well as Canada, Mexico, Denmark, Ireland and Sweden.
Her anthem “Have You Been to Jail for Justice?” is being performed by activists everywhere, including Peter, Paul and Mary. Dubbed the “minister of culture” to the movements for economic and social justice and human rights, Anne is “the best labor singer in North America” according to Utah Phillips. In 2005, Anne received the Joe Hill Award from the Labor Heritage Foundation in Washington, DC. Past recipients include Cesar Chavez, Pete Seeger, Faith Petric and Hazel Dickens. Her critcally acclaimed recordings are widely available.
Mike Elk (In These Times)
Mike Elk is a Pittsburgh native and labor journalist for In These Times. His investigative work has been cited on the front page of the New York Times and debated by Whoopi Goldberg and Barbara Walters on ABC’s The View. Elk won a Sidney Award for his coverage of how corporations crafted legislation to exempt prison labor from U.S. minimum wage laws.
Margot Nikitas (UE)
Margot Nikitas is Associate General Counsel for the United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers of America (UE) in Pittsburgh. A native of central Illinois, Margot spent the past 10 years in Chicago, where she recently graduated from Chicago-Kent College of Law’s Labor and Employment Law program. While in Chicago, Margot was active in the labor and immigrant rights’ movements. Since moving to Pittsburgh, Margot also has been active in Fight Back Pittsburgh, the Pittsburgh chapter of the USW Associate Membership Program.
Patrick Young is the President of USW Local 3657 in Pittsburgh, PA. He’s an active organizer in the labor, community rights, and environmental justice movements.
Mike Zielinski (USW Local 3657)
Mike Zielinski has been an activist for workers’ rights for thirty years and works with USW locals on membership mobilization and contract campaigns. He’s organized on picket lines in dozens of labor disputes, challenging corporate power from AK Steel to Vale. Only a global labor movement can stand up to the exploitation of multinational companies and Zielinski has stood side-by-side with trade unionists facing down repression in El Salvador and rubber tappers demanding union representation in Liberia. Happiness is a bullhorn with fully-charged batteries.
Moises Hernandez (USW Local 675, Los Angeles)
Ryin Gaines (USW Local 3657/Old E All-Stars)
Ryin Gaines is a member of USW Local 3657 out of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and a member of the Old E All Stars.