The Metal Trades Department Officers and Staff Wishes Seafarers’ President Michael Sacco all the Best in Retirement
“We wish President Sacco a long and happy retirement,” said Metal Trades Department President Jimmy Hart. “Brother Sacco has been a fierce advocate for his members for more than three decades. He is a stalwart in the labor and maritime communities. I will personally miss our chats and his wise counsel. Congratulations, President Sacco.”
Seafarers’ International Union (SIU) President Michael Sacco (86) is retiring after nearly 35 years. He is the longest-serving president in Seafarers’ history. The Metal Trades and Maritime Trades Departments have a special bond, says Hart.
“The Metal Trades members build the ships, and the Maritime Trades members pilot them. Our fight is their fight, and their fight is ours.”
A native of Brooklyn, New York, Sacco served in the U.S. Air Force before joining the Seafarers in 1958. In 1960, he moved on to working for the international union holding various posts until ascending to the role of president in 1988. As president of the SIU, Sacco also served as president of the Maritime Trades Department, AFL-CIO.
David Heindel was nominated by Sacco to succeed him as President of SIU. The Executive Board unanimously approved the appointment making him the fourth president of the union. Heindel had been the SIU Secretary-Treasurer since 1997. Tom Orzechowski was appointed by the board to serve out Heindel’s term as S-T. Orzechowski had served as Lakes vice president since 2003.
“We look forward to continuing our work with the Department and the SIU under President Heindel,” President Hart notes.
Also retiring is Maritime Trades Department Executive Secretary-Treasurer Dan Duncan.
“If you have walked the halls of the AFL-CIO anytime in the last 23 years, you have likely encountered Dan’s distinct laugh or met his ever-present smile,” says Hart. “Dan is one of the most genuine, kind, smart, and helpful men you will ever meet. As Executive Secretary-Treasurer at the Maritime Trades, Dan has been a dear friend to the Metal Trades Department and our members. We wish him a long and happy retirement, and we will surely miss him.”
Taking over for Duncan as Executive Secretary-Treasurer is Mark Clements. Coming to the Department from the Seafarers International Union communications department, Clements joined the Maritime Trades in January 2022.
A former adjunct lecturer and research analyst, Clements holds a BA from Tulane University and a Master of Fine Arts from Colorado State University. As well, he earned a Master of Library and Information Science degree from the University of Pittsburgh. Clements spent eight years as assistant director of Communications at the SIU, developing an archival program for the union during his tenure.