WSLC requesting nominations for state’s 2021 labor awards

SEATTLE (May 6, 2021) — Each year at its annual convention, the Washington State Labor Council, AFL-CIO presents awards recognizing the efforts and accomplishments of specific union organizations and individual union members. Although the WSLC’s 2021 Convention on July 21-23 will once again be a virtual affair, these awards will be presented as always to honor exceptional work within Washington’s labor movement.

So the WSLC is calling on its affiliated unions to submit names for consideration. The deadline for nominations for all awards is Friday, June 11.

Following are descriptions of the awards that will be presented for the WSLC’s 2021 Convention. (Follow the links to download nomination forms.)


The WSLC Mother Jones Award has been recognized for decades as the state labor movement’s award that recognizes our own members in their struggle for dignity and respect for all working men and women in our state. Traditionally, two awards are given, one to an individual and one to an organization. Candidates for the award will best exemplify the tradition of Mary “Mother” Jones’ immortal statement, “Mourn for the dead, but fight like hell for the living!”

In 2020, the individual Mother Jones Award went to Linda Collins, a member of the Washington Federation of State Employees and an Unemployment Insurance Intake Specialist with the Department of Employment Security, for her extraordinary efforts to assist workers who lost their jobs amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The organizational award was presented to the Drivers Union of Teamsters Local 117 for winning wage and job security protections for app-based drivers in Seattle and building a voice for these “gig workers.”

The WSLC Economic Development and Transportation Committee reviews nominations and recommends recipients for this award to the WSLC Executive Board.


The WSLC Education, Training and Apprenticeship Committee gives an annual “Bruce Brennan Memorial Award” to the individual who has contributed the most to further the cause of apprenticeship, education and training in Washington state. In 2020, it was awarded to Mark Martinez, Executive Secretary of the Pierce County Building & Construction Trades Council, AFL-CIO.


The WSLC Women’s Committee presents this award for the advancement of women in leadership roles and/or for activism on behalf of women within the labor movement. The Elsie Schrader Award honors the advancement of women in leadership roles and/or for activism on behalf of women within the labor movement. Last year, the Elsie Schrader Award went to Shaunie Wheeler James, Political Director of the Teamsters Joint Council 28. For more information about this award, see the Elsie Schrader award criteria.


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