Delegates overwhelmingly elect Dennis Williams as next president

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Elected were, from left, Gary Casteel as secretary-treasurer; Cindy Estrada as vice president; Dennis Williams as president; and Norwood Jewell and Jimmy Settles as vice presidents.

Gary Casteel as secretary-treasurer and Jimmy Settles, Cindy Estrada and Norwood Jewell also on winning slate

Local 145's Tim Morel calls Dennis Williams a 'champion of social justice.'

Local 737's Tim Chance says Gary Casteel is a man of 'integrity and strength.'

Local 600's Bernie Ricke says Cindy Estrada is an inspiring leader.

Local 659's Reggie Smith praises Norwood Jewell's history of leadership.  

Local 862's Scott Estridge says Jimmy Settles has earned the respect of all.

UAW delegates at the 36th Constitutional Convention celebrated their solidarity today when they elected officers to lead the union for the next four years.

Dennis Williams, the UAW's secretary-treasurer, won 3,215 votes with 49 votes going to challenger Gary Walkowicz, UAW Local 600 bargaining committeeperson, as the union’s next president. Gary Casteel, director of UAW Region 8, won the secretary-treasurer spot by acclamation.

Also, by acclamation, UAW vice presidents Cindy Estrada and Jimmy Settles won re-election, and Region 1C Director Norwood Jewell was elected for his first term as vice president.

Also, candidate Mike Maddox of UAW Local 1649 won election to UAW Trustees.

In nominating the officers, delegates had high praise for their candidates. Local 145 President Joe Morel nominated Williams for president. “Dennis has always been a champion of social justice, not just here at home but abroad as well,” said Morel. “He has never forgotten where he came from and holds the utmost respect for UAW members.”

Casteel’s nomination for UAW secretary-treasurer was delivered by Tim Chance of Local 737. “Gary has demonstrated dynamic leadership skills during his 12 years as director of Region 8. He is a man of integrity and strength, with a passion for achieving social and economic parity for all who have worked hard in this country to provide for their families and to live their lives with dignity,” said Chance.

Local 600 President Bernie Ricke nominated Estrada for a vice president position, saying her “fighting spirit and humanity” are key to her leadership and are what inspires everyone around her. “I am proud to be her partner in the fight for social justice within our neighborhood of southwest Detroit,” said Ricke.

Scott Estridge, chairman of Local 862, nominated Settles for a vice presidency “… because of his long history with the UAW and his integrity, courage and strength. He has earned the respect of the company and the union leadership,” said Estridge.

Jewell’s vice presidential nomination was delivered by Local 659 President Reggie Smith. “Norwood has a long history of leadership with the UAW including as director of Region 1C, a region which was produced great leaders that have risen in this International UAW.”

Joan Silvi