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Many weeks after Democrats swept the Georgia Senate runoff elections, the right-wing extremists’ January 6th assault on Congress saturated the news cycle.

Recent graduate Emily Conway ’21 has secured a full-time job as a research and policy associate with the North Bay Labor Council, a democratically elected body that represents the interests of over

NPR's Michel Martin speaks with Liz Shuler, the newly elected president of the AFL-CIO, about her goals for the organization and the future of the labor movement.

Listen to the segment on NPR.

Newly elected AFL-CIO President Liz Shuler discusses the future of the labor movement.

Watch the segment on Bloomberg.

The AFL-CIO Executive Council today elected Liz Shuler, a visionary leader and longtime trade unionist, to serve as president of the federation of 56 unions and 12.5 million members. Shuler is the first woman to hold the office in the history of the labor federation. The Executive Council also elected United Steelworkers (USW) International Vice President Fred Redmond to succeed Shuler as secretary-treasurer, the first African American to hold the number two office. Tefere Gebre will continue as executive vice president, rounding out the most diverse team of officers ever to lead the AFL-CIO.

The world lost a tireless fighter for working people on Aug. 5, when AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka passed away. At the RWDSU, we often saw first-hand the dedication of a man who was willing to go toe to toe with anybody if it meant defending the rights of working people and creating a fairer and more equitable society where all of us have our voices heard, not just the wealthiest and most powerful. 

On the morning of August 5, the nation, the American labor movement, and workers across the globe were rocked by the sudden, unexpected loss of a great man, an incredible leader, and a lifetime fighter for justice, AFL-CIO President Richard Louis Trumka, or “it’s just Rich” as he would so often correct anyone opting for the more formal greeting. 

Our brother and leader Richard Trumka passed away on August 5, 2021, at the age of 72.

The labor movement, the AFL-CIO and the nation lost a legend. Rich devoted his life to working people, from his early days as president of the United Mine Workers of America to his unparalleled leadership as the voice of America’s labor movement.

He was a relentless champion of workers’ rights, workplace safety, worker-centered trade, democracy and so much more. He was also a devoted father, grandfather, husband, brother, coach, colleague and friend. Rich was loved and beloved.

In April 2020, after the labor market took its largest one-month hit in modern history, Black men and women suffered job losses proportionate to those of white women. Still, their losses were far less severe than those of Hispanic men and women. Black workers already had higher unemployment rates, as has always been the case, but their unemployment rates did not skyrocket as much as other groups.

The nation watched earlier this year as heroic warehouse workers at the Amazon facility in Bessemer, Alabama, made history.

Despite intense pressure, intimidation and bullying by one of the largest corporations in the world, they fought to reclaim their fair share of power and form a union. They spoke out about an experience familiar to so many working people—the stress of being overworked, underpaid, and afraid for the future.