July 2009
From ironworker Glen of NY, NY
Good work guys. Some of these workers legal, or illegal, may have the idea that even if they wanted to work union, they wouldn't be welcome. If they have the desire and the skill to work, they ought to know that the unions would be there to support them. We all need to work and make a living, and it's a shame that a-holes like this contractor would take advantage of that--which is why the unions are still important, and still need to fight to be heard. I hope some of the workers that are affected by this action will be organized in--often those who come in that way are the strongest, most vocal members of a union, because they truly know what it is to be alone and treated unjustly.

June 2009

Here's the offical call for pictures for the 2010 Ironworker Women calendar. In brief: Pictures of women ironworkers on the job working. Other pictures of the site itself, co-workers, family are great too, but the work picture is a must. I've got some pictures from locals 377, 720, lots from 433, and a set from an ironworker who worked a season in Antarctica.

Pictures are due July-ish, but contact me if you're working on it. Digital is easiest, but I will scan pictures for you if you send them to me. The higher the rez, the better.

It's local voting season in 377. Remember to stop by and vote on June 13.
Another project to look into: Many locals are participating and it seems like the place is shaping up. There may be a section for women ironworkers as well. Anyone want to help with that, send me an email. I'm not taking that on, but I know who to send you to....

January 2009

Well it's been awhile since I sort of updated. We have a new president, and a democratic congress. And a large economic mess which will probably get worse before it becomes better. On the positive side, we have a president who sided with workers in his home city, and very visibily. Hope is on the way, and we can hope it gets here before we're all drawing on the "socialist" unemployment checks while everyone's taxpayer money goes toward "bailing out" corporations.

another cool thing I saw recently: for a while the unions have decided that, well due to a decreasing membership, any tradesworker is not a "rat" but a potential memember--endorsing inclusivity of workers based on skill and the desire to participate with the union. At a jobsite in San Francisco off of Franklin St. I saw, not a large inflated rat, but a huge inflated CAT! A big ole "fat-cat" with a diamond pinky ring and a construction worker by the neck. That i believe is progress--drawing attention to the fact that it's not the workers trying to earn their wage who are the problem, but the non-union contractor that underbids a project and takes the profit out of the worker's pockets--the people who are afraid of unions because they cut down on their profit margins by insisting on decent wages and safety conditions and dignity for workers. I'll stop the rant there for now.

Instead: (sent in by 377 ironworker Mike Daly)
We are continuing to work toward 100% ironworker signature participation in support of Employee Free Choice Act. The AFL-CIO goal is one million signatures, our union can furnish over 10% of that if we work hard to "top out" this goal.
Our local has a convenient link to AFL CIO on our web site home page
( see left sidebar, middle of page)
please sign this link or an equivalent -------

the President will sign this bill once we get it to him.
At present our concern is with the Senate, we feel confident in the House. ----

Please read this message or the equivalent at all local union meetings and on all the jobsites --we need to push for this until the day when we see the President sign this bill into law.

Anti-union forces are pledging unlimited money to beating us on this --they are bragging about how they will defeat us again

but we are not losers --just look at our COPE efforts in the recent election - let's get our phone banks hooked into this effort.

we will win this fight for the benefit of our future --the US is currently one of the least organized countries in the world, due to the concerted efforts of anti-union forces to break the strength of organized labor. Our future, our children's future, and our country's future, depend on collective bargaining

HARD WORK now is a must
enough reading --let's get to work!
Mike Daly San Francisco

The 2009 Ironworker Women Calendars are out and for sale!

Get yours from Randy (local 86) and Debbie Rude 1-800-834-2303
or Joe (Local 197) and Julie Spinoso

of course, if you yourself are a woman ironworker, you get yours from me for free. Just ask!

October 2008

there's a transcript of this on which is quite good.

and if that doesn't convince you try: or

and the following is the stuff from last month, but for goodness sakes, vote!
I know you're probably getting a lot of email about Barak Obama....I hope you're checking some of the facts on these emails through something like I'm the last one to say that no one should be critical about the candidates or question the intent of past political actions or various statements made in speeches to the press. But also realize that unfortunately, realistically we've only got 2 choices here: Democrat or Republican. No matter what you think of the historical significance of an African-American president, I hope you're also seeing what we--meaning the union working-class--is dealing with now with the regime we have right now. If you don't like the way health-care, the economy, foreign policy, or the way the labor movement is being handled right now, McCain doesn't look to be much of a change. He's already sent out press kits to various non-union corporations speaking out against Project Labor Agreements, Davis-Bacon, and buying American (?!?).

Some of these issues are addressed at and
Do some research, and vote your conscience, dammit!

September 2008
Happy Labor Day, brothers and sisters. This is our day, so you'd better enjoy it....

I hope you're following some of the presidential nomination coverage--this is what sets the tone of the next four years.
I know you're probably getting a lot of email about Barak Obama....I hope you're checking some of the facts on these emails through something like I'm the last one to say that no one should be critical about the candidates or question the intent of past political actions or various statements made in speeches to the press. But also realize that unfortunately, realistically we've only got 2 choices here: Democrat or Republican. No matter what you think of the historical significance of an African-American president, I hope you're also seeing what we--meaning the union working-class--is dealing with now with the regime we have right now. If you don't like the way health-care, the economy, foreign policy, or the way the labor movement is being handled right now, McCain doesn't look to be much of a change. He's already sent out press kits to various non-union corporations speaking out against Project Labor Agreements, Davis-Bacon, and buying American (?!?).

Some of these issues are addressed at and
Do some research, and vote your conscience, dammit!

The 2009 Ironworker Women Calendars are at the printers!

Get yours starting the 2nd week (I think) of September from Randy (local 86) and Debbie Rude 1-800-834-2303
or Joe (Local 197) and Julie Spinoso

of course, if you yourself are a woman ironworker, you get yours from me for free. Just ask!

JULY 2008

Labor Fest has begun in San Francisco:
to quote from their webpage:

LaborFest was established in 1994 to institutionalize the history and culture of working people in an annual labor cultural, film and arts festival. It begins every July 5th, which is the anniversary of the 1934 “Bloody Thursday” event. On that day, two maritime workers Howard Sperry, member of the ILA and George Coundourakis of the Marine Cooks and Stewards were killed by the police attack on strikers and their supporters. This touched off a general strike and led to the complete shutdown of the city. This was one of the most important general strikes in the history of the United States and led to hundreds of thousands of workers joining the trade union movement.

movies, talks, walks, exhibits--all kinds of good stuff!

and on another note:

Pictures for the 2009 Ironworker Women Calendar are due by August!

I've got (of course) 377, Local 37, Local 433, Local 736, and local 36--and so of course I need more! Pictures on the job, doing what we do. If you give me pictures for your month, you get 5 calendars. Anyone who helps get me those pictures--emailer, photographer--will get 3 calendars. I also need pictures of women in pickets, parades, picnics--participating. Need more information, send me an email: jeanne (@) (omit the parentheses--the spammer-bots are killing me).

MAY 2008
Cinco de Mayo! have a cerveza for me...
Lee of Seattle 86 says: "Check this out a great video about the Los Angeles Building Trades and especially the Ironworkers Locals 416 and 433. They have been pushing this for a while." Be patient--there's 30 seconds of test pattern as the video loads.

i know this is late, but Justine Ida of local 40 New York City had some time in New York Magazine April 21, 2008--the link to the article: I want her t-shirt.
and in more girly news: the 2008 Women Building California conference is coming up in May and is being held in Oakland, CA. The ironworker women in California have been using it as a great opportunity to meet with and exchange ideas and support each other. More information and registration can be found on the California Building Trades website

And I wanted to mention the dockworkers for their part in the May Day shut down of the ports. and

this is even better:

Whether you agree how and when the war should end, the protest was a very powerful and bold commitment to be made by a labor union. It seemed to frighten people who at times commented about Chinese dockworkers or Mexican dockworkers taking jobs--if the union don't grow a pair soon, our jobs will be outsourced anyhow, whether we've been meek and mild or hesistantly disagreeable. This "democracy" has got to start hearing something from the working class and the unions, we can't always be afraid and back down when we're called "commies" (how lame and old is that name-calling? and what the heck kind of relevancy does that name calling have toward all this? it's like calling all the protesters "fat.") or "anti-patriotic"--we are fighting for the rights this country was founded on--not the rights of the most wealthy to make the most (war) profit off of everyone else, but for everyone to be working on the "equal rights" playing field to pursue that damned "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness." bah.

The 2008 Ironworker women Calendar is for sale at Also, you might want to try the fine folks at

MARCH 2008
Didn't make it to the March Local 377 union meeting--haven't been able to shake this cold and especially this cough.

From what I understand, Terry Dunnigan has stepped into the position of BA that John Ford has left. And good luck to him!

and CA ironworkers: if you're going to take the drug test for IMPACT--go to your local facility! the free-for-all at the hall by that Sacramento outfit was the worst time ever. If you're going to pee in a cup, don't do it while a group of about 100 crusty post-work ironworkers are grumbling behind you. You can pick up the paper-work and the list of providers at the hall.

thanks to all the women ironworkers who sent me pictures for the "mother's day" lay out for the Ironworker Magazine--I hope that they use all of them, because they are pretty great, but in any case, it will be good to see the sisters with their families.


Our sister ironworker Jamie of local 736 Hamilton, Ontario (that's Canada) is featured in Chatelaine Magazine this month. It's a great picture and an interesting group that she's put with in the photo essay. She's not happy that they didn't mention her local or that she's in a union. But I think she looks great and does make us proud.

another good photo of her can be found on the photographer Ryan Carter's page. (click "INDEX" at the bottom left hand part of the page, and it's the first photo under "PORTRAITS").

and for those of us at 377: John Ford has resigned as B.A.for "personal reasons." I have always liked and trusted John's judgement as a B.A. and his ability to communicate with the rank and file as people. I hope he and his family are doing well, and I'm hoping maybe he'll come back soon, if not as BA then something where he can continue to help strengthen our local.


The Ironworker Magazine is putting together a page or two of women ironworkers for the April issue as a Mother's Day tribute (May is the directory issue). If you have any pictures of mother ironworkers that would be appropriate, please email me, or the magazine by FEBRUARY!!!!

I've got some great pictures of ironworkers with their kids, some also ironworkers, some solidiers, race car drivers, all awesome. It would be great to have more--maybe make this an annual event, in tribute to those of us work the iron to support their kids. There are some great fathers out there that are featured in the Ironworker Magazine pretty regularly, it would be nice to see some of us that are mothers too.

The 2008 Ironworker women Calendar is for sale at Also, you might want to try the fine folks at


The 2008 Ironworker women Calendar is for sale at Also, you might want to try the fine folks at

Michele Rentas of Chicago Local 1 is our year's cover and also the month of January:

what's inside? Here's December with Linda of New Jersey Local Union 45:

if you live in San Francisco, try looking in Modern Times Boostore.


The Ironworker Magazine is putting together a page or two of women ironworkers for the April issue as a Mother's Day tribute (May is the directory issue). If you have any pictures of mother ironworkers that would be appropriate, please email me, or the magazine by FEBRUARY!!!!

I've got some great pictures of ironworkers with their kids, some also ironworkers, some solidiers, race car drivers, all awesome. It would be great to have more--maybe make this an annual event, in tribute to those of us work the iron to support their kids. There are some great fathers out there that are featured in the Ironworker Magazine pretty regularly, it would be nice to see some of us that are mothers too.


The 2008 Ironworker women Calendar is now for sale at

Michele Rentas of Chicago Local 1 is our year's cover and also the month of January:

what's inside? Here's December with Linda of New Jersey Local Union 45:

if you live in San Francisco, try looking in Modern Times Boostore.

Sorry I haven't been much with the updating. On top of working on, well, work, as well as the calendars, my computer went down for a bit.

I told John Robinson of local 378 that I'd link to his book Bridging the Tacoma Narrows and his upcoming book about the Benicia-Martinez Bridge (the Zampa bridge?)--you can find more info from his publisher

In sadder news: I missed a couple of meetings and so missed out on the news that a few good ironworkers have passed.
Bob "Jake" Jacobson who was really a fine person despite his troubles. I really did enjoy working with him.
Greg "Doc" Nielson, another very, very sweet man. I had thought he might beat the cancer, last I heard from him. If you have the time and inclination, there is a fund for his dear son--ask at the hall.

And Bill Sorro--a loss for 377 and 378 and the Filipino-American community and labor and community activists in the whole Bay Area. The article printed in the San Francisco Chronicle only briefly mentions his membership in the ironworkers--he was just so active and did so much to better every community he touched. A program on KQED is a portrait of Bill's Family.

JULY 2007

a few things of interest:

Well "Sicko" of course. It seems like almost all union labor battles have been about health care issues. I have to say that although we are covered, those of us who have been injured know that we still have to shell out a bunch of money. Especially if we are injured outside of work. I can't imagine what I'd do without insurance, but really the whole system sucks. If you're on the MySpace, you can check out "healthcare for all." i think that's what the group is called..

also check out this video on youtube form local 7 (reminds me why i like most of you guys so much):

and for those of you who live in this state we call California:

Dear friends,

The University of California’s Miguel Contreras Labor Program (formerly the UC Institute for Labor and Employment) has again been targeted for elimination – this time by Senate Republicans. Although funding for the program was included in the California Assembly budget that was passed on July 20th, Senate Republicans specifically targeted the Labor Program for elimination in the budget cuts they proposed this week (see for a complete list of the proposed cuts.)

The Miguel Contreras Labor Program, which is a key source of funding for both the UCLA and UC Berkeley Institutes for Research on Labor and Employment as well as the UCLA and Berkeley Labor Centers, was named by the UC Board of Regents in January 2007 to honor a man whose life’s work was dedicated to improving the quality of life for workers. The program produces high quality research on issues facing working people today, such as the growth of low wage employment, the sharp decline in employer-provided health care, the impact of living wage policies, and the workforce issues in long-term care. The program supports research and education activities at all ten campuses of the University of California.

This is the only research program of hundreds within the University of California that the Senate Republicans have targeted for elimination. The proposal to de-fund the Miguel Contreras Labor Program was made without any academic review of the importance or quality of the research and education it provides. Doing so violates fundamental principles of academic freedom and university governance.

In 2004, when Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger proposed de-funding the Labor Program, a San Francisco Chronicle editorial called the governor’s approach “a crude tool to go after people or institutions he may differ with politically or philosophically.” The same editorial noted that UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business has not been forced to defend its work repeatedly, unlike the Labor Program.

The continual attacks on our program are not only unjustified; they also have been disruptive and burdensome to the faculty, staff and students who have worked so hard to maintain one of the premier labor studies programs in the country.

To express your support for the Miguel Contreras Labor Program, please click here:

In solidarity,
Ken Jacobs, Chair
UC Berkeley Center for Labor Research and Education

and as a quick note: I've got most of the pictures or promises of pictures for the 2008 calendar. featured will be women from local 1 Chicago, 45 New Jersey, 86 Seattle, Local 135 Galveston, 377 San Francisco, 399 Camden, 416 LA/LV, Local 584 Oaklahoma, 625 Hawaii, and 720 Edmunton, Got a lot of structural hands this time, some pretty dramatic pictures on the steel. I'm aiming to get the calendar out in September/ early October. Good luck to me and the Renton Printery.

February 2007

I really am not much of a poetry person. But an ironworker & MC club friend of mine has been writing prose and poetry for a while, and has espcially been prolific through his stint in the big house. A writer named Margo Perin runs writing workshops in jails (SF County) and prisons (San Quentin) in the area and holds readings for her students when they're out.

Michael Francis has told me about readings at City Lights, Modern Times, and Intersection of the Arts. I've missed most of them. Finally my boyfriend and our friend who has worked with prisoners in a drama-therapy program conspired to get me to go to a reading.

Not only Michael Francis, but Terry was there reading some work by his son who is currently incarcerated. Terry 's normal speech patterns lean toward the hesitant, almost stuttery. His voice as he read the piece was strong, sure, and very brave.

Michael's pieces were powerful. A piece about returning to prison: "I can never forget that sick feeling of belonging, of coming home, of inner peace..."

As I had (sort of) said at the Q&A--in the hyper-masculine world of incarceration, and that of the ironworking trade, most men run with the pack, try to be louder and be heard over the others. The men I knew reading there were soft-spoken but easily understood, able to express themselves through the din. Now I know why.

The book they are selling as part of a fundraiser to help Margo Perin continue her classes in the prison system is called Only the Dead Can Kill: Stories From Jail. More information can also be had through or


The 2007 Ironworker Women calendar stiill for sale on line through and at a discount through Again, any female ironworker who wants a calendar, just send me an address and I'll send you one! Of course, you have to leave me with a way to contact you....(That means YOU Vicki of Local 1!)

Wondering what it's all about? Well here's the cover:

drawn by Herny Goldfield. And who's in it?

january: tina, local 7, the big dig--if you know Tina have her contact me!
february: mandy, local 118, feather river bridge project
march: heather, local 86, fed bank of seattle
april: rhonda, local 377, muni transfer station
may: union activist month--a collage of pix of pickets, marches,
conferences, including: kelly easley, ina, jan jenson (big gold star),
pix from the "women building california" conference, myself and
jessica dee at the international.
june: daphne, local 378--c/o joe blum, labor photographer, al zampa bridge--if you know Daphne, have her contact me!
july: bridget, local 7, rodbusting somplace in big old Boston.
august: peggy, local 377, with a tc gun/lejeune gun whatever you call it, lockheed
steptember: april, local 86, being a badass
october: jamie, local 736, high above a steel mill in Canada
november: shelly, local 377 (jan's daughter) a "vintage" shot.
december: natalie, local 86, lee's daughter SR 516.

WOMEN IRONWORKERS: Start Collecting Photos for 2008 Calendar!

October 2006/ November 2006

The 2007 Ironworker Women calendar IS NOW IN STORES. Again, any female ironworker who wants a calendar, just send me an address and I'll send you one! I think the women in Seattle (86) and San Francisco (377) will be covered. Also if you're in the Yahoo! Iron_Women group, I probably have you on my list already. Never hurts to double check though.

For all you that aren't women or ironworkers, the calendars will be available through and And for you that live near San Francisco, Modern Times Bookstore has copies. In New York, Bluestockings has the calendar in stock.

Wondering what it's all about? Well here's the cover:

drawn by Herny Goldfield. And who's in it?

january: tina, local 7, the big dig--if you know Tina have her contact me!
february: mandy, local 118, feather river bridge project
march: heather, local 86, fed bank of seattle
april: rhonda, local 377, muni transfer station
may: union activist month--a collage of pix of pickets, marches,
conferences, including: kelly easley, ina, jan jenson (big gold star),
pix from the "women building california" conference, myself and
jessica dee at the international.
june: daphne, local 378--c/o joe blum, labor photographer, al zampa bridge--if you know Daphne, have her contact me!
july: bridget, local 7, rodbusting somplace.
august: peggy, local 377, with a tc gun/lejeune gun whatever you call it, lockheed
steptember: april, local 86, being a badass
october: jamie, local 736, high above a steel mill
november: shelly, local 377 (jan's daughter)
december: natalie, local 86, lee's daughter SR 516.

WOMEN IRONWORKERS: Start Collecting Photos for 2008 Calendar!

Also, if you are interested in sort of what it is that I was trying to do at the international convention, check the "Women in the Trade" link to the left....

July 2006

Dear Ironworkers:
It's official! I've gotten my first piece of mail from the international addressed to "Dear Sir and Brother!" So it must be time to start sending me pictures for the 2007 Ironworker Women calendar.

To recap: I'm doing this calendar to spread the visibility of women ironworkers. I really am tired of people telling me that we don't exist. I send all the women ironworkers I know of a free calendar, and anyone whose picture I use gets an extra. I'm not making money on this project--I'm not even breaking even. Yet. If I do somehow manage to make money, it will go towards next year's calendar. If somehow I manage more than that, I'll think of another ironworker women project to sink it into. Maybe stickers?

Nuts & bolts: send a picture or pictures of yourself (female ironworker) at work, hopefully doing something cool. A few pictures of the jobsite would be nice too (if you've seen last year's calendar, I use those pictures to fill the spaces around the dates). A scanned picture or digital file should be about 300 dpi. I know this is kind of large, but I'm patient, and I want the calendar to look good. If you can send me a print of the picture, that would be ok too--just email me for my physical address. I'll send it right back as soon as it is scanned, as anyone who has done that knows.

Cover: I've gotten my old school tattoo artist friend Henry Goldfield to agree to do the cover. He's got the union label tattooed on his arm. He's a great friend, and hopefully I'll get a copy to send around soon.

What gets chosen: Last year's calendar was west coast heavy. I'm trying to even it out, but that depends on what I get. I'll guarantee women who haven't been in who have useable pictures that they'll have a spot. Um....first come first serve in the locals--as much as I love you Local 86, I can't fit all 50 of you in the calendar. I have a spot for a jobsite that 3 of the 377 women are working on. And I usually reserve a month for the Women Building California convention. I love the older pictures--it establishes the fact that we have a tradition (albeit a relatively short one) in the ironworkers. And have your hands on something--throwing a beater or climbing a rebar column or welding off a scaffold or working some rigging make some nice shots. There must be someone on your jobsite that can take your picture! If not...well I'm in the San Francisco bay area, and I would take it. Ask around, we can get this done!

Deadline: I'd like to have these pictures by THE END OF AUGUST AT THE LATEST!!!!! Putting together the dates and pictures makes me, and then my boyfriend a little crazy. If you have a picture in the works that for some reason you've delayed (i.e. the crane doesn't arrive until the 3rd week, all the steel showed up detailed wrong, etc) contact me--we'll see what we can do. I've gotten a good estimate from The Renton Printery in Seattle. I'm hoping Inkworks in Berkeley can work something out, but they were real assholes last year. (union printers of course. Tigereye is also a good female friendly union printer, but the last I talked with them, they don't do calendars).

Distribution: I'm going to work with to distribute again. Hopefully an earlier start will be key to getting the word out and the calendars around. If you know of a place that would like to sell these calendars, I'm willing to sell them at cost--as long as they get out!
Thanks, and remember, I can't do this alone!

ok take care, work safe.

June 2006

Local 433 has elections this coming weekend! VOTE! and to throw a personal recommendation in: VOTE O'KANE!

377 Election Results:

President: Dan Prince

V.P.: Terry Dunnigan

Business Manager: Dan Hellevig

1st B.A.: John Ford

2nd B.A. Dennis Meakin

3rd B.A.: Johnny Rocha

Recording Sec: Larry Fenton

Sergeant at Arms: Jackie Winslow

Trustees: Peter Ziegler, Paul Daley, Steven Thang

E. Board: Gary Fairchild, Herbeye Falcon, Art Lopez, Tim Isley, George Wynns

Examining Board: Eduardo Reyes, Johnnie Ray Nielson

SFBT: Terry Dunnigan, John Ford, Dan Farro, Mike Theriault, Dan Prince, Larry Fenton, John Rocha, Peter Maki, Dan Hellevig

SFLC: John Rocha, John Ford, Dan Prince, Dan Hellevig

SMBT: Dan Prince, John Ford, Dan Hellevig

SMLC: Dan Prince, John Ford, Dan Hellevig, Peter Maki, Paul Daley, Tim Isely

SCBT: Dennis Meakin, Dan Hellevig

SBLC: Dana Fairchild, Tom Marini, Dan Hellevig, Dennis Meakin

International Convention: Dan Hellevig, John Rocha, Art Lopez, Dennis Meakin, John Ford, Dan Prince, George Wynns, Peter Maki, Dana Fairchild, Jeanne Park

thanks to all that voted--about 480. (& especially all that voted for me.)

June 2006

Well I guess I should have posted something sooner--but elections are on Tuesday June 6! Vote Vote Vote! or you'll be sorry later. I'm still pissed off at those that didn't vote in the unions during the presidential elections. Geez, I know that the other guy wasn't great, but look what we have now!

(An interesting site having to do with the Stephen Colbert appearance at the White House Correspondents Dinner: )

Also: LOCAL 377 ELECTIONS, June 10th.

There are 2 business agent positions being contested:

Agent 1: San Francisco: John Ford (incumbant) vs. Dennis Dougherty
that one's a tough one for me.

Agent 2: San Jose: Dennis Meakin (uncontested)

Agent 3: New position, possibly a northern district: Johnny Rocca, Dan Farro, Jeff Boyer....
not so fond of Boyer. He was the ironworker supervisor & foreman on a couple of jobs I was on, and was so "good ole boy" that he tended to neglect or scapegoat the workers that weren't in his clique. I would prefer a buisness agent that would actually take the time and effort to respect me as a memeber of the local and work with me toward progress.

Business Manager: Dan Hellevig vs Rich Braun
I have worked for Rich, and he is a gruff character, but fair. Dan has been ok. Very much toeing the political line. Has tried to bully me in the past.

President: Dan Prince vs. Pete Maki
The letter Pete sent out to the membership is interesting. He does state a lot of interesting ideas at union meetings. Personally he kind of grates on me. Danny does a lot of work. but he has flaked out on me a lot on various issues. hm.

well it will be very interesting in general. This is far from being an official analysis or voting guide, mostly because I don't remember how to spell most everyone's name, (i know a few good nicknames), and the union hasn't put out an offical ballot. I will officially endorse Dave Baldini and Gary Fairchild and maybe Mike Hall for E board, and I would have endorsed Peggy Phelps, but she was 2 weeks in arrears a while back and is sadly inelegible....PAY YOUR DUES. dammit. I know I'm missing some people ....Johnny Ray should get a good start, so vote him in. I definitely should be voted in at Labor Council and as a rep to the International Convention, if only to confuse the old boys at the international once more.

There will be a barbeque, and lots of beverage flowing. Unfortunately I'll only be there briefly, since the building trades' Women Building California Conference starts that day.

April 2006

(HEY NEW JERSEY IRONWORKER!!!--since my computer crashed, I don't have your address to send you a calendar! email me back!)

So I took a bit of a visit to the east coast to visit friends & family in Chicago and Manhattan. Went by train with the boyfriend in a sleeper car--highly recommended for those with a bit of time, and who don't mind being cooped up with someone else.

Took a little side trip to Cornwall Bridge, CT where my guy grew up. According to his brother it was quite the iron-town before the bessmer system made lower grade iron ore more profitable. His brother's mother-in-law belonged to an iron fab family that did the grate that Marilyn Monroe is standing on during the "Seven Year Itch." The photographer didn't like the on-location pictures and had her family ship a grate out to Hollywood--it paid for college.You can read the name of her company on the grate.

So those of you who are somehow still interested in the 2006 calendar, click on the image below to get a glimpse of the pictures featured. I think both and still has them.


January 2006

Well Happy New Year.

(HEY NEW JERSEY IRONWORKER!!!--since my computer crashed, I don't have your address to send you a calendar! email me back!)

The calendars seem be doing well. I think that Art ( look in the STORE) and Randy ( might still have some left. If you're 377 or 378, Art's been selling them at the union meetings. And yes, they are still free to ironworker women, especially if it convinces you to work with me to put together next year's calendar. I'll be starting in July. No shit.

The other thing I recommend--I don't know how many of you are museum go-ers....but the San Francisco Modern Museum of Art is displaying an exhibit of photos in rememberence of the April 1906 earthquake. This is not only cool because some of the innovations in panoramic photos of this event (one guy put together a "captive airship" which was a camera mounted on kites), or that everyone was taking pictures at the time (the Kodak Brownie had just come out), or because of the fire and complete demolition of the city, but because you get to see a lot of steel. There are quite a few examples of structural steel being erected--guy derricks, "working floor" waaaay down, but most of the members look delicate compared to the post-earthquake monsters they must have started fabricating afterwards. There's also art to look at too....

ok, take care, work safe,


December 2005

(HEY NEW JERSEY IRONWORKER!!!--since my computer crashed, I don't have your address to send you a calendar! email me back!)

Well I've finally got a computer up and running.....and a bunch of new news.

First the good news, since I seem to be a little heavy on the bad news side:
hooray for the California "special" elections--Arnold can eat my shorts. Arnold can eat all our union made shorts.

The 2006 Ironworker Women's calendar is for sale at and I still have a few free copies left for the women ironworkers who want them.
and seattle is sending out this card: Happy Holidays to you all!

ok the really bad news:
Dave Dildy passed away December 6, 2005. Which was totally shocking and devistating to a lot of people. A group of us had just gone on the sparky toy run on the 3rd with him. He had even brought an extra stuffed animal in case anyone had forgotten to bring one. He had the biggest heart and the biggest smile of anyone I know--I guess it might all come in proportion. He always had my back in the hall or on the jobsite. No matter how cranky I was, he would pick me up and swing me around & somehow that would make things better (or shake my brain loose. whichever). He was still gearing up his union rebar business and had just gotten engaged. He leaves behind his fiance and his daughter. This is the message I got from the hall:

(click on the picture for a map)

although this is not the best picture I've taken, this is how I like to remember him:

September 2005

Of course everything about Hurricane Katrina and the government response to the disaster is disturbing. Our local 377 has pitched in to help out the rebuilding of our fellow locals hit by the hurricane (more than the initial amount, after my out-of-order comments, less than I would have liked).

My current favorite relief effort site is: which is a New Orleans radio station with lots of local links. They're broadcasting all the old jazz & blues on-line through radio station WFMU (one of my favorite kooky New York stations).


I'm putting together a 2006 women ironworkers calendar.

The back story: I had previously put together a calendar for 2004 through my local. I got tired of community based organizations & other trades organizations telling me that there was no such thing as women ironworkers. The work is too hard, they say, and the men are such a-holes. duh. So I went to my local & put together a calendar of local women working in the field on sites from the Golden Gate Bridge to the trusses of SFO.

This year I've decided to do it right. I'm going to union print the calendar & I've got an agreement with to sell it through the internet.

But first: I NEED PICTURES!!!!

I've got a few already, and a few more promised by women in my local, and Lee Newgent (yey!) has promised me some, and I've talked to apprenticeship co-ord Rick Davis' office, but I do need more. Any female ironworker who is interested & contacts me will get a free calendar, whether she's in the calendar or not. Anyone who gets me a useable picture also gets a free calendar. It must be a picture on a jobsite, and she must be in work clothes, doing some aspect of the work. I must have her name & local # and it would be nice to have a description of what she is doing and a description of the jobsite. High resolutions would be great, I'm hoping for 150dpi or more. Although if it's a great picture, that's what Photoshop is for....

I need to get these pictures soonish (sorry about the delay about getting off my ass to ask for help) so send them to me so I can get this all to the printer by sometime in October.

The picture you should see to the right is that of Anna on the Mariott Hotel running safety cable. I'd love to see more rodbusters & bolt-up gals--most of my friends are currently doing miscellaneous or pre-cast/ exterior finish work. I'm working for the school district ADA retrofit--not much of the high drama shot from there. Don't have any pix from my own bolt up days.

July 2005

New news: Bryan Pleasance is at St. Mary's Hospital in San Francisco. And he seems grouchy. Perhaps more than usual.

My condolences to the Davis clan of Sacramento. I understand one of the guys was in a motorcycle wreck. Memorial service & ride July 30th. Sorry I have so few details....

Well this really has become a depressing site. My friend Brian Pleseance fell of the steel last Thursday. According to various accounts he was connceting steel up in Santa Rosa for Concord Iron, grabbed a safety post which cut loose and dropped 30ish feet. His shoulder, hip and foot were damaged. He'll be in the ICU for a couple more days, and though CAN receive visitors, prefers not to until Monday. We're putting together a nice care package of magazines featuring motorcycles and big boobs....


Oh, and for members of Local 377 who havne't been "in the loop"--if you were really excited about the Emergency Relief Fund...uh, call the hall about it. It kind of doesn't exist any more.

As for me: I've landed a job working iron for the school district. It's not a bad gig. When the guys first heard that the district "hired a girl!" they were pretty upset. In less than two weeks, they told me all about it and (kind of) apologized. Now they can't go to lunch without me. I've got to figure out something to eat at the hofbrau buffet that isn't a slab of fat, and yet doesn't taste like barf.....hmm.....

November 2004

This has been a terrible year for the local, and the latest news comes to me as one of the worst possible events I could have imagined.

My friend and mentor Harold Evans passed away Thursday the 11th, from, I'm told, a heart attack. The apprentices I've spoken with are shocked, since he had just taught a class a couple of weeks ago.

Harold made me an ironworker. From when I first met him we argued and discussed the role of women in our trade. He discovered he liked me and did everything he could to help me figure out what the hell I was doing. Harold was the one who told me I could do the ironworker apprentice of the year competition, despite all my doubts, and all the many, many other people who thought I would fail miserably. Harold was the one who urged me to run for the position of delegate to the International Convention. Harold nominated me for office and helped me to win. Everything I've done and succeeded with for my local and my union I credit to Harold and his belief and pride in me as an ironworker and a person.

Harold loved to fish, and did a lot of it in his retirement. He tried to get me to buy myself a home to retire in near to his place in Cottonwood. His wife Elaine kept him in line for the most part. His granddaughter Charlotte had his hopes for the future.

Although retired Harold did not give up his support of the local. He continued to teach the apprentice classes such as history and COMET. Harold was a strict but fair teacher. He had a lot of knowledge to give to those who wanted and needed to know. But he also wasn't afraid to be wrong or to learn new things that may have contradicted the old. Harold was never too old to learn a new trick or two. He wasn't afriad to make friends or enemies, but anyone with sense wound up respecting him.

I do not have the details, but the local is planning a memorial in San Jose on Thursday the 18th.


October 2004

Well those of you that know me know I'm not at all happy with my local. Although I'm seeing more and more of my ironworker friends, it's all at the hall, and we don't seem to be moving out.

All I've got to say is that voting will affect your life--if not at the moment, then maybe a few years down the road. REGISTER TO VOTE BY OCTOBER 18th!!!! I'm pretty sure that's the date, but in case that's not the case, REGISTER NOW!!!!!!

If you haven't caught any of the debates, and haven't had the time to pick up the newspaper, or would rather watch a re-run of the Simpsons, then fine. They just released "Farenheit 9-11" on video--go watch that to gear up your political self. It's interesting and done with some humor.

If you don't think that issues such the world economy (price of steel), healthcare (notice how many unions are breaking negotiations over heath cost issues), the war and, well, just about every issue being brought up in the debates do not affect YOUR work, then you really need to start some thinking. I'm not going to tell you how to vote, but I do recommend you vote for the candidate who is going to support you and your job as a union ironworker and the people and family around you. Do you think that if your company and boss get extra tax breaks or the opportunity to save by cutting on your healthcare that they will let these benefits "trickle down" to you? Boy I've got a bridge to sell you....

More info & pictures on the motorcycle club have been posted.

Take care and work safe.

July 30, 2004

There was an accident on the Richmond San Rafael Bridge. An apprenticeMiguel Rodriguez fell through a hole in the lower deck when some rigging gave way. Several ironworkers jumped in after him to save him, but he had hit his head on the way down, and did not survive the ambulance ride. I'll fill in some blanks as I get the news to fill them.

I ran into a friend at the hall who would like to get the Rodriguezes his lawyer's number. This guy hurt his back working for Tutor Saliba, and not only did they say he wasn't working that day, they clumsily tried to forge documents to support their claims. The lawyer was not impressed. He also works for 377. Bryan D. Lamb 415-495-7800

I'm also sorry about this being a kind of a bummer page lately. Deaths are important to post, but I should also be considering other items important as well. Thanks to all the ironwokers and their family members I talked to during the 377 phone banks to register our members to vote. I got to talk to some people I hadn't seen in a while. Most were on our "unregistered" list because of a change in address or we had a PO Box listing for them. So mostly I just had a chance to chat instead of berating good union ironwokrers about not being registered to vote!

I' m really sorry I didn't post this earlier. I know there are people who wanted to be there for this great man's funeral, but did not find out until later. There is an eloquent obituary posted by the dispatch window which briefly describes Charlie and his accomplishments:

July 2, 2004

Mr Charlie Cox passed away Friday morning from cancer. A terrible surprise to me--Ii saw him at the union meeting a couple of months ago, and his hug was as warm and strong as ever. Charlie was one of the first black ironworkers in local 377. I've never heard a bad word spoken of him, and even those who may have had a problem with his color, couldn't deny his goodness as a person and an ironworker. I met him when I was an apprentice and he was helping in the welding shop--eventually I asked him what job he was working on--"Shoot, darlin'" he said, "I've been retired over 10 years..." (and it may have been more than that.) He always had a story for me, and he has always been a supporter for the women in the ironworkers. (his niece Dee Dee does very well.) Please pass the news along--I'm sure many knew and appreciated Charlie.

January 2004

So far it hasn't been a good year for me. I was in a motorcycle accident on the Monday before Christmas. I have a broken finger and a broken ankle and a very broken bike.

But I got the news yesterday that over the weekend a friend and brother ironworker Ron Apple, Jr. died.

He was an awesome ironworker and an awful drinker. Whenever I met someone new in San Francisco and mentioned that I am an ironworker, I was often asked if I knew Ron. I'd seen him around but I finally met him this year working for SME at Mission Bay.

Ron was also a great guitarist and played with a punk rock band called the Eddie Haskells. The music was a big part of his life.

He was also supposed to take me out for coffee (or more likely a beer) last week, since it's hard for me to get out while on these crutches.

I'll miss him terribly, and my heart goes out to his family. Ron was truly one of my favorite ironworkers.


On Sunday January 18th 3:00p.m. There will be an informal gathering for Ron Apple at The Wild Side West, 424 Cortland Ave, S.F. (415) 647-3099. It will kind of be a potluck, and there will be some music.




Calfornians!!! VOTE "NO" ON THE RECALL!!!*** OCTOBER 7TH***Yes to Bustamante as a backup (ugh, look at all your other choices.) No on Prop. 54. Yes on Prop 53. That's what Labor Council is advocating, that's what Local 377 is doing, that's what I've done. Hope to put this to rest soon. Tired of hearing Arnold's voice in a "serious" way.

This is the nice new letter I received:

Hello: My name is John Robinson (Local 378) and I have written a book about a new bridge named after ironworker Alfred Zampa. You read about it, and saw some of my pictures, in the June issue of Ironworker magazine. The book is titled Spanning the Strait:Building the Alfred Zampa Memorial Bridge. Lots of good pictures, you'll love it. Would you talk it up and will you please link my webpage to your site?

Regards, John Robinson

I also received an email from a detailer having to do with a site with art depciting ironworkers. My email crashed badly a couple of weeks ago, and I lost a couple of weeks emails before I could post it. I'll check through my guestbook, but if that person would like to email me again, please do so!

Take care, work safe! and VOTE!!!!

JULY 2003

Elections have come and gone and we have our old and new officers. A big thumbs up to all those who came out and voted.

There's a good website that is following the bay bridge project:

It features everything from the various crafts at work (mostly rodbusters at this point) to the ugly hardhat gallery.

And Joe Blum's photographs! (he sent me the link--thanks Joe). Joe has his own gallery of photos and one of his pictures is the photo of the month:

Nibbi Brother's Cliff House Project has a webcam--I think Midstate is putting up the steel:

And 377 might have a website soon:
put together by Golden Gate Bridge District Ironworker "Woody" Becker. Finally!!

Ed Dern's wife would like to thank everyone who has shown how much they've appreciated our fellow rionworker, and have helped her in her time of need. I asked if she had anything in particular she wanted me to communicate, but I haven't heard back from her yet, although my computer has decided it's crashing season.

take care!
(and yes, Jan, I will be working on your page sometime soon....)

MAY 2003

nominations Local 377 this month! voting in June! be there so you can legitimately pat yourself on the back or whine and complain when it all comes down.

this email was just forwarded to me:

From: adolfo gonzalez (
Date: Wed, 7 May 2003 22:34:42 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Death of a brother Ironworker/Ed Dern local 377

I thought you would be interested to know that a young brother Ironworker from local 377 by the name of Ed Dern was killed on Monday May 5th when an I-Beam fell on him while he was connecting. (see the attached newspaper link below) He leaves behind 4 children and a housewife. They are overwhelmed with grief as I am sure that you can imagine.

I am sending you this e-mail to try to recruit help for his family either by way of contribution or advice. Please reply. His wife does not know what to do. Her Husband was working out of town and did not find out about his death until the evening of the 6th. She asked that I contact anyone who could help that is why this is being sent. Please contact me if you have any questions. Please forward this e-mail to another brother Ironworker

God Bless, Al Gonzalez Local 378

hey brothers & sisters--really--please do take care

March 2003
A few quick updates: Lee seems to be doing ok. A little crusty but none the worse for being leeched (I'm serious--leeched). Won't be back to work for a little. But a lot of us aren't going to be either. The hall is full. All the gang's all here. Although I'm getting back into the swing of doing crossword puzzles.

Local 377 sent 15 women to the State Building Trades women in construction conference in Sacramento. If I lost track of anyone, I could be sure to find her at the bar....typical....Sunday was chock full of workshops from child care issues to Robert's Rules. I don't think I was the only one having problems dealing with Monday.

And on top of that, I've added a page that I've created for Jan "High-Pockets" Jenson who's sent me a whole butt-load of pictures. A few from San Fran back in the 80s--some of the guys look familiar, yet with more hair....

February 2003
ATTENTION Brothers and Sisters. It is official. As of 2-5-03 new cal-osha reg. (1527a.) states ALL construction sites that have portable toilets for the workers must also supply a "HANDWASHING STATION" and it specifically states a water, soap and towel type station positioned outside of any toilet placed in a reasonable location so as to make the station easy to access and be kept up. Protect yourselves and your families from Jobsite bacteria and chemical .compounds by demanding your new right for a place to wash up before you eat or after you have had to use one of those crapbuckets they call toilets. SPREAD THE WORD (NOT THE GERMS) TO ALL GOOD UNION CONSTRUCTION MEMBERS ON EVERY JOB IN THIS STATE(Calif.) Sincerily, Kenny Ray Scheidecker (posted on local 433's website)

February 7, 2003

Lee "the baron of bolt-up" Barron is in at California Pacific hospital, Davies campus. He's working for Danny's on the Golden Gate Bridge retrofit when a very large piece jumped up and bit three of his fingers. He's going to be in there for about week so they can be sure the 2 fingers they put back are going to take. He's in the north tower, 4th floor, the nurses seem to know him pretty I can recall, he needs some chocolate. And probably some coffee--they'll only let him drink decaf, and the stuff they have at the hospital isn't so hot...

February 2, 2003

Err....I seem to have neglected my spot in cyberspace a bit. I've put in a few new items, including something about the Second Annual Statewide Conference for Women in the Trades in Sacramento March 15-16 under "Women in the Trades" page. I've got a link to "blue collar gal" under links--her son has gone overseas, and she's been keeping us up to date on how he is. And I've got the link to the SF Mission Bay project that I was on working a while for marble masons (pre-cast marble panels--they needed a decent welder who didn't tick off the welding inspectors. Awesome little panel gang--Larry Jordon, who was the foreman, is the greatest, and he just retired...poo.). Those guys are all a little off their rocker. Except for Nemo who is insane in a more ironworker kind of way.

June 22, 2002 from Joe Blum:



Last Friday, June 14, 2002, four giant container cranes passed the massive steel structures that dominate the Bay Area's skyline--the Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco's skyscrapers and the Bay Bridge--bound for the Port of Oakland. The largest of their kind in the world, these cranes were manufactured in China and will play a vital role in loading and unloading cargo in the Bay Area for decades to come.

The black and white images in this exhibit, go behind the scenes and document, from the workers' perspective, how the skyscrapers and giant cranes are constructed. I spent a month in China this spring at the crane manufacturing facilities and for the last few years i have been documenting how local ironworkers have been adding to the San Francisco skyline and rebuilding the Bay Area's bridges.

Come and see the skill and effort of iron trades workers from both sides of the Pacific in the making of these huge structures which we both take for granted and depend upon in our everyday lives.

The Exhibit will be up until at least July 10. Anyone who cannot make the opening reception is invited to call me and perhaps arrange to see it with me at another time.

Please forward this message to any friends you think might be interested. I look forward to seeing many of you.

This exhibit is part of San Francisco LaborFest 2002. For more information regarding this annual festival and a complete program of this year's events go to: or call 415-642-8066

Sunday March 17th 2002 is the San Francisco St. Patricks Day Parade. The Ironworkers will be marching with group 50 (building trades) behind their own banner. Arrive at 11:30am by 2nd and Howard, and you'll figure out where you'll be. I think a few of the members should be there....

Feb 26, 2002

The Ironworkers International has finally set up the webpage they talked about at the 2001 Convention. I think it looks pretty ok.

Jan 10, 2002

Terry "Limey" Strobel of local 40 has been chosen by the Engineering News-Record as one of the top 25 newsmakers of 2002 for his determination and courage at the "Ground Zero" site in New York. Congratulations, Terry, you and the all the ironworkers on the site deserve this recognition!

Nov. 24

Watching PBS--a show called "Life 360" with a feature on the Bay Bridge. Kind of went on and on about the boomers (don't mistake me--boomers are a-ok, but you can't forget about the local hands!) and followed a 378 apprentice and some woman carpenter---A CARPENTER!?!?? Where did she come from?!?! what about the women ironworkers? I know Ina was out there....

And there's a link to some more bridge related activities:

I keep thinking that I'll never eat turkey again....but the leftovers are sooo tastey....

Nov. 4

And I've added another article specificly on union ironworker Rosemarie George

I've started working on the Moscone West project at 4th and Howard for Harmon, kind of doing a little of everything. Right now I'm in the raising gang sending up red iron tube steel to support the skin of the building. Some of it is at least 40 ft long column trusses. Lots of fun. The operator is an old cranky guy named Kenny. Sometimes we'll send up a piece that the foreman has rigged up himself and once Kenny comes up with it and it's hanging there all catawampus, we'll kind of raise eyebrows at each other when the foreman says, "good enough" and sends it up to the connectors. The connectors swear a lot.

Oct. 23, 2001

Read the article sent to me about Women at Ground Zero and that means ironworkers, too...

Oct 3

Joe Blum is having a show of his photographs in San Francisco. All the subjects for this show are ironworkers doing what ironworkers do best. I've posted a couple of examples of his work under "Site Pictures"

Sept 29

my friend Santos is back in town. Turns out he went to New York and checked into the hall on the 8th. nothing much going on for boomers, so visited new jersey and met up with some cool people and went to go check into their hall. got a dispatch and a lift on the morning of the 11th. saw the planes hit. was very proud of our guys--no one thought twice about it, everyone was on their way, and helping each other out. none of the news coverage got even close to the horrors that were in that pit every day. but when they climbed out of there for a breather, there were people waiting for anyone with a hard hat to come out, and they had the dirt washed from their faces and anything they asked for before they went back in.

Sept 21

--barge at San Rafael Bridge still on hold. went to the hall for a few minutes, and escaped so that i can start packing to go camping in Santa Cruz. Escape seems necessary, even if it is only for a couple of days. Maybe take out the new used screwed-up surf board. i guess i'm going to keep buying surfboards until i can surf.

more postings under "Articles..." below. everyone seems to cite the ironworkers, so i tried to keep it to articles where they quote us or are thanked in some way. very proud of our people out there.

(Sept 14: all California workers click here--very important action alert from California Labor Federation, AFL-CIO involving workers' compensation and unemployment insurance)

Sept 11, 2001

None of us can be untouched by such horror and damned action. Keep your loved ones close to you, in this time of tragedy. This is not something that we can understand the full intent of in respect to the complete anguishing result, we can only know the anger and confusion. The sheer unexpectedness of the event and the certainty that almost anyone you have known may have been in a plane, or in a building at such a moment or witness such terror. Be certain to explain to those that are close to you that it is your fear for them and yourself that motivates you and causes you to hate.

My heart goes out to the victims and the friends and families that are also victims of this heinous crime. And also to you and yours.

Bless the members of local 40 and all the ironworkers who are out there working their asses off day and night clearing the rubble and finding those who are in need of aid. Limey, Jimmy, Barbarian, Santos and all the rest--strength, courage, and luck.

  • "GROUND ZERO CAM" New York City

  • Local 40 NYC ironworkers' webpage: www.nycironworkers.orgit's a jac page with some contacts. (the music keeps crashing my system, so the technologically disadvantaged should beware.) actually now that i checked it out, there's not any info on the ironworkers current status. but there are contacts. tell them to pass on the message that we're proud of them.

  • And a message on Sept 15 from Al Simmons president of the Greater New York and Vicinity District Council conveyed through Art at in regards to the work being done there.

  • And although you want to give, be careful--a message on internet scams (already!) preying on this tragedy and your grief click here. what scum.

  • also is a site that lists the hazards of working the site (toxins, asbestos), and also links to a structural engineer's assessment of what actually caused the World Trade Center to collapse. An informative site altogether.
  • it links to which is also a huge resource of information. thank you Claudia.

    Articles on our ironworkers in New York (click here)

    twin towers orphan fund actually haven't checked this site out completely yet. caught it on tv.

  • The Kins have posted this:
    Visit AFL-CIO at for developing information and opportunities to help.
    {info on NYC Labor Council funds as well as local unions}

  • New York City Central Labor Council

  • from what I understand, most blood collection agencies have asked people to hold off for 2 to 8 weeks so that there will be a steady supply for the coming weeks.

  • Red Cross at 1-800-GIVE-LIFE.
  • Blood Centers of the Pacific (888) 393-GIVE

  • Kankakee Federation of Labor Community Services Incorporated from Iwboomer's webpage.

  • a huge resource for has a page of links to news agencies and resources.
    And also Ask everything from funds to news and flight travel.

  • for news from an international perspective: (translated by Google)

  • for cash donations: call American Red Cross at (408) 577-2113 or send checks to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund, Santa Clara Valley Chapter, 2731 N. First St., San Jose, CA 95134
  • Call the United Way at (408)247-1200 & specify your donation to the victims of the terrorist attack.
  • SEPTEMBER 11th FUND: (created by United Way of New York City) c/o United Way of New York City, 2 Park Ave., New York, NY 10016 call: 212-251-4035
  • The New York Times lists this fund:

  • and other sites are processing credit card donations to Red Cross. This can be done through Yahoo as well with this link:

  • BAY AREA foundations passing on donations to September 11th fund: Peninsula Community Foundation in San Mateo 650-581-4312, the East Bay Community Foundation in Oakland 510-8363223, or San Francisco Foundation 415-733-8588

  • INFORMATION: if you have a relative on one of the crashed flights, call United Airlines at (800) 932-8555 or American Airlines 800-245-0999
  • The University of California-Berkeley has a web site to help people locate friends and loved ones in New York and Washington. The site will be registering those that are safe at Users can check the site at
  • To report missing victims to the New York City police: 212-741-4626

  • TO REPORT TIPS: the FBI has asked anyone with information on the incidents to call toll-free (866) 483-5137 or (415) 575-5028. A form has also been placed on the Internet at

  • pictures of support for American in this time of tragedy from all over the world: (from Nan)
  • and flag raisings from mike.

  • letters in defiance of this terrible act (click here)

  • campaigns for those in support of a non-military response to this terrorist act (violence begets more violence)(click here) do remember the people who actually implemented these acts are dead and in their minds, martyrs. i'm not sure that the death and war will stop them in their twisted extremist cause.

  • information on some of the political background and military history and some discussions. (click here)

  • my sister who works in Manhattan sent me this story.

if anything i've typed is inaccurate or if you have more information, please email me it's long day and a long week for us all.

please, take care.

Sept 4, 2001

hope you all had a great labor day!

you know, i'm hoping to eventually put a lot more stuff here, and update the pictures....but right now i'm learning to play the accordion. how about some ironworker themed polkas?

and while dragging friends from out of town throught the sights of San Francisco, we went to the Musee de Mechanique (err...the Mechanical Museum) behind and under the Cliff House. They have a whole collection of creepy fortune tellers, dime and quarter puppet shows and old flip movies--one features Harold Loyd the silent screen comedic actor in "On the Beam" in which he balances on some gingerbread steel. actually i had spent all my quarters on video games and only caught a part of the action, but it's pretty cool.

late July 2001

Should have posted this a earlier! Can still catch some of it, hopefully some of the Harry Bridges stuff.

Check the schedule of events for local San Francisco:

off to the San Rafael bridge! Wonder how many of my tools will the fishes be working with....

June/July 2001

More stuff in the international history section. A few links added. Be sure to check out for information about the international ironworker festival.

Kenny's been yelling at me, while I'm driving pins into the steel to "hit it like you live!" I'm just getting used to the weight of an 8 pound beater in my hand, but after a day of swinging it, getting heckled becomes kind of tiresome. The best come back I can think of (at least for me) is "What--like a girlie?" Also amusing is the comment that I throw like a girl. What did ya expect?

late May 2001

So I stuck more pictures in the abovenet section. And I threw in some more of the International History from "An Informal History..."

I guess I've picked up the structual belt again and am bolting up. I didn't remember that I had so many different muscles that could ache. Also I've realised that if I turn too fast with the bags loaded up I tend to tip over. So much for looking cool on the iron.

May 2001

Joe Murillo passed away on the 17th of May. There will be services on Tuesday and Wednesday--call the hall for details.

March 2001

Cesar Chavez Holiday Parade--Saturday, March 31, 2001

Ironworkers meet on Market between Main and Spear 11a.m. for parade!

early March 2001

for ironworkers of local 377 and also those of the District Coucil of the State of California and Vicinity (locals 118, 155, 229, 378, 416, 433, 625, & 75) please click here

and everyone, go to The_Union page and send in a letter to congress. They miss you.

late Feb 2001

Here and there I've been fixing some of the links and adding them. I will get around to some more pictures--I do realise I haven't added pictures that are more than a year old.

But I did add to "the_union" section by adding some stuff about the district council. I have a whole little booklet which is kind of useful in ways--I think it was passed out as a kind of recruitment tool to non-union workers. Eventually that will be all in here. (soon, right?)

And those of you looking for some of the sites that the links aren't working right on (like Johnny O'Kane's)--a lot of servers have gone down, I guess as a part of this .com crash deal. Not to worry, many have found new homes, and I will update them as soon as I get new information and time.

Feb 2001

Been working a lot of overtime and weekends, and it hasn't rained as much as I would have hoped. I did, however, post in "sitepictures" the pictures of Kim, an ironworker woman from Texas, working in Antarctica. And there is some information about stick welding under "work." I've updated and added a couple of links. Eventually I'll have a day of scanning more recent pictures in. And maybe I'll even go check to see if anything old I've included has become embarrassing.

oh yeah, and now i've got something like permission to use "An Informal History of the Iron Workers." It's a pretty good sized pamphlet, so I probably won't get it all on the international history page (thought I've started). If you're out of 377, I think Harold Evans has got a few handfuls of copies laying around somewhere. Pester him, he deserves it.

Work safe, see ya around.

late October 2000

early October 2000

Hi, y'all. The Ironworker's Local 377's annual Labor Day Picnic (September 30th) was pretty cool. It's the first I've attended. A lot less nutty drunken antics than I'd been lead to believe--which meant that Andy & I spent most of our time seeking out people we knew carrying beer cans. Thank you *very* much Gene & Andy's friend Rob. The food was great (also a pleasant surprise), and the raffle prizes they gave out were cool too. Since I left my tickets at home, I could only grin (or I think it was a grin and not an expression of pain as Andy shot eyefuls of daggers at me) be happy for my brothers and sisters that went home with the baseball tickets, football tickets, I-Mac, large screen color tv (Walt Vestneys, that old dog), and trip to Hawaii (yey Rick!).

Also of interest: for those of you at the airport who have had problems with the fireproofing they've been using out there--The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and California Occupational Safety and Health (CalOSHA) are investigating the fireproofing! If you've been exposed to and/or are experiencing problems related to this stuff, be sure to call in to contribute to their data base: (415) 703-5159

And the Rosie the Riveter Memorial is this coming weekend--the 14th! It should be an interesting event--more info on the links page.

Acme Surplus @ 5159 Mission by Geneva in San Francisco sells Tear Mender, for those of you, like me, who have been trying to find the stuff for ages.

AND *Don't forget to register to vote!!!*

ok. that's it for now... work safe.

September 2000

Hey, Happy Labor Day a few days late. There was a cool documentary about Harry Bridges on PBS that weekend. Henry Goldfield of Goldfield's Tattoo Studio, 404 Broadway, is always going on about the man, and now I kind of understand why. (Henry's very pro-union, and he and his people do good work. Currently I'm getting work done by Sunny Buick--but enough of the promo...)

Also Saturday the 9th was some kind of 150th California celebration. So, the IMAX movie "Wild California" was being shown for free. Generally I dislike crowds, so I've been avoiding the Sony Metreon where it's been playing, but the movie was worth 1000x the 0$s. There's a section that prominently features ironworkers doing a gutline walk on the Golden Gate Bridge. Joe and Billy are working on something silly on, I think, the north tower, and then do the descent down the cable. I personally can say, "been there, done that," but it's still awesome looking on a multi-storey movie screen. Highly recommend going, even if it's not free. (Did I mention I saw it for free?)

Still on the 4 Seasons Hotel. On the 33rd floor. View gets better, weather gets colder. Wait for the elevator gets longer, distance to the nearest bathroom gets further...

August 2000

August. I'm now working for Benson, a glass outfit, doing the glass panels for the exterior of the Four Seasons Hotel on Market Street by 4th Street, San Francisco. And you know, there are no glaziers here (except for Dick). It has to do with a $50/day working for a company with an out of town shop. Sort of like a travel expense thing. Anyhow, it's not resolved, and now we have ironworkers having to think in 16th and 32nds. Oh, and to try & not break that see through stuff. (I can just imagine all the glaziers gritting teeth).

So far it's been a pretty good job. I'm working for Mike doing layout, being the "smart" person holding the dumb end of his tape. The entire time he keeps muttering something about the building having 13 sides, and only one right angle. It's kind of fun leaning out over the edge of the building to install the metal clips that support the panels and waving at tourists and small children. It's kind of fun watching guys squint from the 21st floor trying to decide if the woman going by on the street in the electric blue dress is cute.

I've really got to get myself more long underwear. I know it's August, and supposed to be summer. But some days going up the elevator about the 12th floor you smack into that cold, damp fog. And the wind just doesn't ever stop. Over and over you hear that quote that goes something like: "The coldest winter I ever lived was the summer in San Francisco."

So I've been slowly adding pictures here and there. I've got a few new links. And I've added a section for art. I've put up a few sketches that Mike's done from the airport--not well scanned or cropped, but I'm just checking to see if he's checking on his work. If there's anyone else who has artwork that they'd like to have posted, feel free to e-mail me:

May 2000

It's May and it's time for Mother's Day. I'd like to wish my "mother" Dan a happy day. I got him some lilacs from the back yard and knitted him a scarf. You can sort of read "Ironwork" sewn on one side, and "Dan" on the other--but you kind of also figure out why I don't really sew.

Also good wishes to all the other mothers out Dan says "I've been called a mother before, but not like this."

I'm still working for Walters & Wolf at the Franklin Templeton campus. My friend Jim, the apprentice mentioned that he read his kid's copy of Nickelodeon magazine which had an article about ironworkers in it. They interviewed a guy with over 30 years in the trade, who claimed to be a connector on the job.

That brought to mind for Larry, the steward, a job they were working on in the south bay in the early 90s (when Larry was still and old coot--I wrote all this down, but it's in my coveralls at work.) A reporter from the San Jose Mercury News came to the job site and interviewed a friend of Larry's. Eventually the topic turned to the two connectors working above their heads. "Who are they?" asked the reporter. Larry's pal said that they were the best connectors in the whole area and gave his name and Larry's. Larry still has the article somewhere.

oh, and the ex-apprentice who stopped by the Oakland apprenticeship facility in his bullet proof vest, was frustrated by the fact there was no one there to shoot, but shot the place up anyhow. No one was hurt. sort of.

work safe, ok? ok.

late April 2000

After three days of early morning thunderstorms, a couple of days of breakfast at Denny's with the boys, and a beautiful sunny afternoon, I was ready to go to work today. (I had a lot of time to sit and think with the bills.) We've got newer and more fun mud holes to play in. I just can't help thinking about how much I'd like to thank weird Pete for those days of singing (over and over) "up, up, and away, in my beautiful, my beautiful--ZOOMBOOM!" The memories, and that oh-so-hard-to-forget tune, makes every moment of being in a boom lift a pleasure.


At the hall: Hector Martinez's family sent several cards thanking everyone for their generosity and good will. Hector crushed part of his face and his collarbone in his fall, but is doing well and is recovering at home.

late March 2000....

It's March 31st and the ballpark just opened! I hope it's as enjoyable as I think it will be. Best damn ballpark I ever helped build!

So everyday when it's time to go, Larry our steward picks up his lunch box with a groan and says "my doctor says when my lunchbox gets too heavy to carry--it's time to retire." Now we all like Larry, but Jim and I decide that it's time to help him.
Jim has a tube of superglue in his overalls. We try that first. I get a moment to go to the shack. I put superglue all over the bottom of the lunchbox and on the toolbox it's sitting on. Of course everything's dusty and dirty--nothing sticks. (Lesson 1: no matter how much superglue you use, get clean surfaces)
So we go the easy route--lots of 1/2" thick steel shims. (or maybe they're washers? they've got a hole in them?) The foreman Jim catches me at it, but lets me go along my merry way. But I didn't get to do a good job covering up the shims.
Larry picks up his lunchbox at the end of the day, and immediately says "damn, I've been f***ed with!" Jim the foreman starts laughing and says he ain't squealing, but Larry comes out of the shack doing bi-cep curls with his lunch box and catches the other Jim and me cracking up.
We're currently trying to think up other things to make heavier for Larry.
Boomer has suggested Liquid Nails, and painting a piece of plate the color of the bottom of the lunch box. All this information will, of course, be kept in mind for the future...

later guys, work safe.

early March 2000 Well, it's March and I haven't done much to the site since I promised to get it to the point of listing it with web servers around the beginning of the year. It's getting there though.

I'm working with Walters & Wolf, a pre-cast company at the Franklin Trust campus right next to the Bay Meadows race track. (I've got their website listed under "links") A great site for my co-worker "Sea Biscuit." It's an all ironworker crew, and I'm doing layout for the pre-welds that the panels hang on. Neat, because I'm working on something that people will actually be able to see. Hopefully I've got my tape going the right way...

Which makes this little story funny:
a hobby of mine is beekeeping, and I belong to the local club. We had a booth at the San Francisco Flower and Garden show and a vignette (a little constructed garden scene complete with observation hive). I volunteered to help, and was kind of frustrated with some of the goings on with the planning, but still excited to do something. At the Cow Palace (the location of the event) the real set up begins, and I find myself and another woman just kind of standing around. The guys are using power tools, nailing stuff together, flinging dirt around, and all I got to do was clean a few windows. and stand around. So, impatient, I ask what needs to be done. A guy says, "Why don't you two girls help each other measure 18" lengths out of this 2x4." I nearly lost it. After swinging around in a jlg all day marking elevations trying to get dimensions of clips off scraggly blueprints to within a 16th, he suggests I need help to do this? Grrr. So I drug up, and went home and took a hot bath and drank a nice cold beer.


Hector Martinez fell into the hole working for PDM on the Four Seasons Hotel job downtown San Francisco. He was in critical condition for a while at General and was moved to UCSF. He is receiving visitors, I think, if he's still there. Hector's memory has been affected (he's mostly running on short-term memory), and it's going to be a while before he can be in a condition to even think about going back to ironwork, if he does--being selfish, we need good guys like him in the trade. I'm sure he can use all the support and encouragement he can get. A collection was taken for him at the last union meeting, and more would always be welcome.

Hey, guys, work safe.

February 2000--from a Tradeswomen mailing list. For your entertainment.

Recently Mr. John Robinson of Associated Builders in San Francisco addressed the following question and comment to Tradeswomen, Inc.

We are now publishing his remarks and adding responses by two tradeswomen.

Mr. Robinson:

Does Tradeswoman ever hold workshops on the availability of opportunities in non-union sector? Considering the construction building trade unions well-documented long time discrimination against women and persons of color, I find it curious that your group touts unionism. Note that unions only represent 14 percent of total workforce.

* * * * *

Response from Donna Levitt:

Since when does the ABC offer women & people of color anything better? We all know that your "apprenticeship" program is nothing more than a way to get cheap labor for your scab contractors on public jobs. Butt out of Tradeswomen, Inc!


Response from Jeanne Park

Hi, I'd like to reply to Mr. Robinson.

Obviously Mr. Robinson, you are management. Apparently you do not understand the purpose of unions is to aid and band together to help all members. In the past, it's true that many unions are documented to have excluded women and minorities. Are you saying that the non-union sector was an integrated accepting whole?

Nowadays the union has realised the ridiculousness of turning away any potential qualified members. Better to have women and minorities in the union putting together their skills and ideas toward the benefit of all the members than working non-union for corporate greed without any security or benefits. As a union ironworker, I find that in the union I have people to turn to in cases of injustice and unfair practices. Can you tell me one positive thing about not having these people on my side?

The union is instituting classes on "sensitivity" training, so that all the members will realise that minorites and women are now an integral part of our union. We also participate in COMET classes to better understand that it is not the non-union workers that hurt us, but rather non-union companies. We accept non-union workers as potentially working with us, and not as working against us. Do non-union companies guarantee a safe and harrassment-free workplace?

Through the union I have learned what is necessary for a comprehension of my trade. I have had the 3 years training necessary to put me on an even start with my male co-workers, and I was paid throughout the process. Do non-union companies guarantee an equal amount of basic training to all its employees?

And if I find myself in a bad situation with co-workers, or my foreman, or management, do I have the freedom to leave that job without jeopardizing my work reputation with that company or others?

Frankly, Mr. Robinson, I'd be foolish to recommend any woman or minority worker not to work union. Our numbers within the ranks of the union and union politics is increasing rapidly. We are accepted, as much as anyplace else. You're just behind the times.

Union Ironworker, Local 377

Jeanne Park

* * * * * *

Mr. Robinson:

I appreciate the comments. Interesting that when opportunities for work are available, that there are those who seem to think that an organization such as ABC cannot provide quality training. I would love to have the Tradeswomen, Inc. representatives tour our training facilities.

Is Ms. Levitt familiar with all the union and non-union apprenticeship programs? Has she taken the opportunity to tour ALL state approved programs?

P.S. My reference to the building trades being "taken to task" for a poor record with women and minorities is based on the Little Hoover Commissions Report some years back which pointed out the building trades poor record in this area. The Little Hoover Commission was chaired by the well know contractor Nathan Shappell.

{well la-de dah, Mr. Robinson!}

page from December 1999 (a few items date to way before that):

Hey! I'm back working at the airport. I've also been sick with the flu for the past week--and did I do any work on my site? But I've got some cool stuff in the works, and am going to figure out java. Harold Evans returned my html book, and says that the apprenticeship web site is really officially in the works. I ought to be listing my page with some of the major search engines soon. Not a lot of rain here, so far. Good for work, bad for growing stuff and dustiness. Work safe, you people.

The Apprenticeship program of Local 377 is now as open as it's going to get. If you know of anyone interested, have them call (408) 988-5511. Work is great, and at the worst, the up coming bridge jobs are going to sop up anyone we have left for a couple of years. The only problem is finding someplace to stay.

(click for larger image) Margaret is selling these as a 8x12 photo print, signed and dated in a gold colored ink for $10 (inc. s&h). (If you're on the job, they're cheaper if you just ask Margaret.) If you'd like to order one, e-mail me with "park photo" as the subject, and I'll send you the info.

And Joe the elevator guy posted the below notice in his elevator. He also gave it to the management types who gave it to the Giants people. And also to the press. So I hope this does some good.
Milwaukee Sports Service of County Stadium is selling the patches of the Ironworkers that Milwaukee Brewer Players are currently wearing on their uniforms throughout the rest of the season. These patches are being sold for $10.00 each (plus $2.00 Postage and Handling whether you order one or ten). All of the proceeds go towards a fund which has been set up for the three families of the men who died in the Miller Park accident of Big Blue. Checks should be made payable to "Milwaukee Sports Service". If there are any questions, you may call toll free 1-888-DUG-OUT4. Please send your orders to:

Milwaukee Sports Service
Milwaukee County Stadium
201 S. 46th Street
Milwaukee, WI 53214
Attn: Corey a good place for pictures.

**My deepest regret and sympathy for the family of Amy O'Brien. She earned my respect through punk school at Local 377 as an ironworker and a person. It is a terrible loss for Danny's. I'm sure she has made many friends in her travels that will miss her.**

October 1999

A couple of days ago, my friend a woman ironworker was threatened at work by an electrician. There was trouble in communication between her, the signaler, and the go-low operator, and the rail they were hoisting bumped and landed onto one of the boxes the electricians were installing. The man started screaming, and was yelling at the operator, who told him off. So the electrician asked who the signaler was. My friend said she was, and he told her she didn't know what she was doing and did he have to get someone to teach her. She told him to mind his own business, everything's under control. He called her a bitch, and clotheslined her on the safety line she was working over. The two guys on her crew told her to back off and apologize to this man because the guy would probably kill her. They went and talked to the guy and shook his hand. Then they went back to my friend and told her that he wouldn't do anything while they were around.
Once upon a time, if a black man were to confront someone oppressing him, he was told he would be killed. They were told to stay in line and play nice and no one would get hurt. Only for some reason they kept getting into trouble, and trouble that they wouldn't have started or have been a part of. Someone was being set up. And someone has to kick back, to feel like a proud human being, and not someone's dog, someone's bitch.
Sadly, the men in this little drama were all African Americans. And so goes another day at work.

spring 1999 sometime....

Makes me mad

Some guys don't believe half the crap I put up with. Here's an e-mail I received--unedited--and my response. Grrr. The grammar's terrible to boot.

I was confused by your quiz questions were you complaining?
Of course men are not going to want to do Ironwork with a women! Just like women don't like help cleaning the house.
There is men jobs and women jobs. if you need an income instead of raising your children and taking care of your ironworker become a teacher or a secretary.
If you insist on doing a mans job then don't complain when they treat you like the weaker sex because you are.
-wife of an ironworker {e-mail address removed due to her excessive harrassment. she won't take responsibility for her own comments, but expects me to shut up about mine. }

yes I was complaining. Because people ought to treat people like they are capable of what they are able to do. I am very capable at my job. I don't think I do well because I'm attractive, or because of my breast size, or because I think I ought to but because I am strong enough and bright enough to accomplish the work. This is why I participated in the 1998 International Apprentice of the year Competition in Anchorage, Alaska. Men are not necessarily used to working with women, but that doesn't mean that women cannot do the job. How else was industrial work accomplished during WWII when the majority of men were overseas? Women worked because they had to, to keep this country going, and apparantly they did well enough that men had jobs to come home to.

I don't need help doing much of anything, and I am very self sufficient. When I have time, I cook and clean and provide for myself. So do many of my co-workers. And many of them have wives that work, so they share responsibilites. Men make very good chefs--not very many women's cooking shows, are there? And many butlers are men, window washers, professors, executive secretaries etc, etc. Being a teacher or secretary to me is boring. Men do those jobs too.

Are you trying to say that the only job women have is to take the money off of hard working men? Most of my co-workers have been burned by women who think they deserve the world from them for doing next to nothing. An ironworker I've dated was divorced once because he forgot to get his ex-wife a Christmas present because he was doing overtime. Yes, there are hard working housewives, my mother is one. But she also used to have a career, and her own dreams and ambitions that were put aside. Perhaps that is why she is so bitter. And why my parents argued so much. Also, raising children has become very dangerous in this world, and I am not willing to raise a child I cannot adequately provide for or spend the necessary time to raise with love. Considering the divorce rate, and the many deatbeat dads (even some of my favorite co-workers), I am not going to trust just anyone to help and provide for me.

I am not the "weaker sex." I am my own person. If you like, I'm nearly as tall as my foreman, and outweigh him by at least 20 pounds. (Not that he's huge, anyhow.) I work out at the gym. I'm not into the body building, but I enjoy my job and do what it takes to do it well. I've bolted up, climbed columns, rivet busted, decked, work to blueprints, weld, and anything they give me to do. And since I do my job well, I resent that people who don't know me, like yourself, feel they have the right to criticize myself and my job choice.

I also am able to sign my own statements.

Jeanne Park
proud member of
Local 377

Oh, also: My favorite ironworker at the bar has a faster typing speed than I do. But he has a bit of a temper for that kind of work. And Ronnie cleaned and vacuumed my living room and it was one of the sweetest things a guy has done for me.