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Our council is losing two prominent elected allies this year as President-elect Joe Biden announced his choices of Boston Mayor Marty Walsh for Secretary of Labor and Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo for Secretary of Commerce.
Walsh, started his career as a union laborer, became a leader of his local and the Boston Building Trades, a state representative and was elected Mayor in 2013. He was the founder of “Building Pathways,” a Building Trades pre-apprenticeship program that seeks to increase the opportunities for women and people of color, who have not traditionally been welcomed in construction union ranks.
Boston City Council President Kim Janey will succeed Walsh as Mayor until the next election, this fall. Rhode Island Lieutenant Governor Dan McKee will take Raimondo’s spot and complete her current term, which ends in 2022.
Joe Byrne, Executive Secretary Treasurer of the North Atlantic States Regional Council of Carpenters made a statement about Walsh’s selection:
“On behalf of the members of the North Atlantic States Regional Council of Carpenters, I want to congratulate our friend, Boston Mayor Marty Walsh, on his nomination by President-elect Biden to be our nation’s 29th Secretary of Labor.
Like many proud union members, Marty knows what it’s like to put his work boots on before the sun rises and put in a hard day’s work. As he became a state legislator and then Mayor, he took a little piece of all of us from the jobsite with him. The pride and the confidence in our government that gives us is hard to describe.
We know that Marty will be a great secretary of labor for all Americans because of his varied personal and professional experience. He understands the necessary balance between labor and management and will represent the perspective of middle-class American workers, which has too often been lacking in Washington.”