Jackie Jeter

Jackie Jeter (Photo/whitehouse.gov)

By AFRO Staff

WASHINGTON D.C.— Jackie Jeter has a history of pioneering firsts. She adds to the tally selection as the president of the Metropolitan Washington Council, AFL-CIO, becoming the first woman to head this organization. Jeter is currently serving her fourth term as president of the Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) Local 689.

The Labor Council, serving as the umbrella for nearly 200 unions in DC and suburban Maryland, held elections March 21 and unanimously approved a slate of 25. The Council bid farewell to outgoing Labor Council President Joslyn N. Williams who headed the organization for 34 years. A new executive director Carlos Jimenez also begins his tenure.

Tefere Gebre, Executive Vice-President of the AFL-CIO, praised Jeter’s election as a signal that organized labor leaders were becoming more reflective of the workers they represent. “As the first immigrant to serve as an officer in the federation’s history, I’m especially pleased to administer the oath of office to the first woman president of the Metropolitan Washington Council, AFL-CIO. Jackie Jeter is well known as a fearless and determined leader who keeps the interests of working people uppermost in all she does.”

Jeter said, “I am honored to lead a board that represents veteran leaders in the labor movement as well as our new additions to the board.”

“I’m looking forward to working with all our stakeholders, including our new executive director, officers, board members, and vibrant network of allies to continue to make a real difference for working people in our region.”

Jeter began her trade union career as a shop steward and advanced through the leadership ranks. Before becoming an officer, Jeter operated Metro buses, trains and the rail interlocking system. She may be best known for challenging WMATA management over safety issues in the wake of the disastrous Red Line crash.

About the Metropolitan Washington Council, AFL-CIO

The Metropolitan Washington Council, AFL-CIO comprises nearly 200 Council affiliates representing a broad cross-section of 150,000 area workers, from athletes to writers, government workers to the construction trades in Washington, DC, Prince George’s, Montgomery, St. Mary’s, Charles and Calvert Counties. As the voice of working people in local communities across the United States, the AFL-CIO Central Labor Councils are the heart of the American labor movement. By uniting the labor movement and mobilizing the local community, the Councils play a critical role on local, state and national issues as we work to accomplish our mission “To organize in the community to promote social justice for all working people.”