Delegates acclaimed Red Seal Electrician Laird Cronk as president of the 500,000 member organization and social justice and human rights activist Sussanne Skidmore as the new secretary-treasurer. Skidmore hails from Prince George and carried the New Democrat banner in Nechako Lakes in the last provincial election. She replaces Aaron Ekman, also from Prince George, in the secretary-treasurer’s role. Ekman was elected to the position in 2014.
“We are stronger and better as a labour movement when we work together,” Cronk says. “Let’s get this job done,” he told delegates. “Let’s get out there together. Let’s build. We have much work to do. We must lift up all workers—those in unions and those not yet in unions. We must build bridges for success and ‘reconcili-action’ in our house.”
He says strengthening the labour movement and increasing its membership base ensures that the economy works for everyone.
Skidmore, an executive vice-president with the BC Government and Service Employees’ Union says she is honoured to be the new secretary-treasurer.
“Together with Laird, I am committed to building a movement that is united, progressive and strong,” she said.
A 33-year member of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 230 on Vancouver Island, Cronk has been an executive officer of the BCFED for six years. A strong proponent of expanded apprenticeship and skills training programs, he is also a board member of the provincial government’s Industry Training Authority.