James Harrison currently serves as the director of renewable energies for the Utility Workers Union of America, AFL-CIO. From 2012 to 2020 he served as a senior national representative for the UWUA’s Region IV. From 2003 to 2012 Jim held the position of president for UWUA Local 223, which represents 4,000 members employed in the electric, gas, and steam utility sector in Michigan.
From 1978 through 2003, Jim served Local 223 as a shift steward, bargaining and grievance committee person, plant chairperson, chair of Local 223’s power generation division, organizing director, and local union trustee. Jim is a past UWUA executive board member-at-large, and a past executive board member of Detroit Metropolitan AFL-CIO. He currently serves as a general board and executive committee member of the Michigan State AFL-CIO, board member for the Michigan AFL-CIO Workforce Development Institute, and as vice-president for the St. Clair County Michigan Central Labor Council. Jim also serves on the board of directors of the BlueGreen Alliance Foundation, and steering committee member of the BlueGreen Alliance. Jim serves as trustee for the UWUA’s Power for America Training Trust Fund. In 2021, Jim was appointed by Michigan’s governor to the state’s Climate Solutions Council, an advisory group to the governor on climate targets.
Jim has over 40 years of experience in the utility industry; including successfully negotiating numerous labor agreements, strategic planning and policy development, regulatory and legislative actions, and various outreach and mobilization activities. Jim has conducted State Legislative and Congressional briefings and has successfully promoted the interests of working people with respect to energy and workers’ rights issues in Michigan and in Washington, D.C. Jim has experience in effectively collaborated on numerous initiatives with community leaders, employers, and various advocacy groups. Jim is a graduate of Wayne State University’s Labor School and Cornell’s National Labor Leadership Initiative and has successfully competed labor programs from Michigan State University, AFL-CIO labor college, and Harvard Law School program on negotiations.