AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka (UMWA) sent the following letter to Doris Harakay, who, at nearly 90 years of age, has been a member of IUE-CWA Local 775 for 70 years and is both the longest-serving and oldest employee at General Electric (GE) Aviation.
Dear Sister Doris,
As president of America’s labor movement, I want to congratulate you as you celebrate 70 remarkable years of union seniority. It is clear you understand that the strength of America’s labor movement is measured by the steadfast dedication, determination and devotion of its members.
Undoubtedly, a lot has likely changed since you joined IUE-CWA Local 775 and started to work at GE Aviation. I know the company changed owners five times. But during dark passages and on bright days, what has always remained constant for all these years is you. Every day, your brothers and sisters could count on you to punch in every morning and punch out after a hard day’s work.
Of course, you will just say you were doing your job, and that’s true. You will say you were trying to provide a better life for your family, and you certainly have. But I know you did not plan to stay for 70 years. Well, God bless you for it and for doing your job with grace and ceaseless optimism.
Union members like you are how we are building a stronger labor movement—a movement not just for today, but for decades to come.
Once again, congratulations on this monumental milestone. And thank you for your service.