WASHINGTON, DC (JULY 28, 2022) – The Utility Workers Union of America (UWUA), AFL-CIO today announced Deirdre Brill, a leading national union organizer, has joined the union as organizing director. Brill will provide organizing support to all UWUA locals and lead efforts to expand the union’s organizing drives nationally.
“This announcement comes at a time when more Americans are looking to organize and leverage collective action,” said UWUA President James Slevin. “Deirdre’s skills, experience, and dedication will be key as we enter a period of growth. Our members will benefit greatly from having her on our team.”
Brill will lead UWUA’s team of organizers and will focus on internal operations, as well as growth initiatives. She’ll also lead the union’s efforts in the National Labor Relations Board case against Kentucky Delta Natural Gas, and support UWUA’s upcoming election.
“We’re at a pivotal time in the labor movement as interest and public support for union representation is on the rise,” said UWUA Vice President Craig Pinkham. “Deirdre will be a bold leader as we work to expand our union, advocate for family-sustaining careers and build strong, sustainable communities.”
Brill, who has a doctorate in history from the University of Pennsylvania and a bachelor’s degree in women’s studies from Yale University, comes to UWUA after 10 years as organizing director for the Professional Staff Congress (PSC), a trade union that represents full and part-time faculty and professional staff at the City University of New York as well as workers at the CUNY Research Foundation. At PSC, she led a department of seven full-time organizers and worked closely with the legislative, contract enforcement, data and communications departments.
Brill led the planning and logistics for two recent 1,000-person marches and rallies, created an innovative online organizing program, coordinated logistics, and training, led the organizing effort to re-card the union’s members in anticipation of the Janus decision as well as multiple contract fights, including a successful strike authorization vote. She fought against unwarranted curriculum changes, coordinated member and staff involvement in local and national actions, including fast-food workers’ strikes, immigrant rights protests, International Women’s Day actions, May Day rallies and the New York City Labor Day parade.
Prior to her work at PSC, Brill worked as an organizer for the American Federation of Teachers in Philadelphia and New Jersey and was a professor of Latino and Hispanic Caribbean Studies at Rutgers University. Before teaching at Rutgers, she succeeded in helping the college’s administrators form their union.
Chartered in 1945, the Utility Workers Union of America (UWUA), AFL-CIO represents 45,000 active members employed in America’s utility sectors including the electric, gas, water, and related professional and service industries. James Slevin is UWUA’s National President. For more information visit https://uwua.net.