Ex-District 751 president named to new IAM&AW post
UPPER MARLBORO, Md. — International President Tom Buffenbarger of the International Association of Machinists & Aerospace Workers has announced the creation of a new Aerospace Territory that will be led by newly appointed General Vice President Mark Blondin.
“Aerospace industry workers make up almost 25 percent of our union’s membership and work in all corners of North America,” said Buffenbarger. “An Aerospace Territory will better coordinate contract negotiations and representation duties that are now spread across multiple Territories.”
Blondin’s “years of experience in the aerospace industry make him the ideal person to lead this new Territory,” Buffenbarger added.
Since 2007, Blondin had been assigned as an IAM&AW aerospace coordinator, with the primary responsibility of negotiating agreements between the union and Boeing throughout the United States and Canada.
In that role, he was one of the leaders of the successful talks with Boeing that led to a four-year contract extension ratified by members in Washington, Oregon, Kansas and California earlier this month.
“It is an honor to lead this new Aerospace Territory,” said Blondin. “The aerospace industry is constantly changing and there are unprecedented challenges in the years ahead. Organizing our aerospace members under one banner will help keep North America the leader in high-tech manufacturing, the world’s best producer of aerospace products and the creator of solid, middle-class jobs.”
Blondin was president and directing business rep for District 751 from 2000 to 2007, and during that time he was the district’s lead negotiator for contract talks with Boeing in 2002, 2005 and 2008.
Blondin’s career with the IAM began in 1978, when he worked at a Seattle machine shop represented by the Machinists Union. He hired on at Boeing in 1979 and worked in the tooling department at Renton.
Blondin is a member of Local Lodge 751-C, and he held many posts as a lodge officer before becoming a District 751 business rep in 1996.
Originally formed in 1935 to represent hourly workers at the Boeing Co., District Lodge 751 of the International Association of Machinists & Aerospace Workers now represents nearly 31,000 working men and women at 45 employers across Washington, Oregon and California. This month, District 751 members used collective bargaining to reach an agreement that ensures Boeing’s new 737 MAX will be built in Puget Sound.
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