Cole W, Davis is a National Vice President of the 53,500-member Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen. He was elected by acclamation to his second consecutive term of office at the BLET’s Third National Convention on October 1, 2014. He was elected by acclamation to his first term as Vice President at the BLET’s Second National Convention in 2010.
Prior to his election to the BLET Advisory Board, Vice President Davis served as General Chairman of the Norfolk Southern (Northern Lines), Wheeling & Lake Erie and Chicago & Ft. Wayne Eastern General Committee of Adjustment. His Committee represented approximately 2,600 members from Kansas City, Mo., to Croxton, N.J. and was comprised of 34 BLET divisions in eight states.
His railroad career began in 1970 when he hired out as a switchman for the Norfolk & Western Railroad in Moberly, Mo. He transferred to road service as a brakeman two years later and then transferred to engine service in 1974.
Vice President Davis has been a proud member of the Brotherhood for 27 years, joining Division 86 on January 1, 1984. Throughout his career he has served as Vice Local Chairman, Local Chairman, Vice General Chairman, and General Chairman. He served as a delegate to the National Convention in 2001, 2006 and 2010 and on the National By-laws Committee (2006) and the National Wage Committee (2010).
Among his many accomplishments as General Chairman, Vice President Davis is most proud of the contract he negotiated in 2007 on the Wheeling Lake Erie Railroad that provided substantial pay increases and benefits while resisting the Carrier’s attempts to cut jobs and forcibly implement one-person operating crews. He represented both the engineers and trainmen on the W&LE and this agreement dispelled any argument that the BLET would not represent the best interests of trainmen when given the opportunity. He also cites the 2008 on-property agreement for Norfolk Southern engineers that provided wage increases and additional benefits estimated at more than 30 percent over a five year period as another accomplishment in which he takes great pride.
Brother Davis and his wife Denise have five children (Cory, Beau, Dani, Jamie and Addie) and four grandchildren (Josh, Ella, Cade and Cole). They have also been foster parents to over 30 children in the last 20 years. He is a member of St. Pius X Catholic Church serving as a communion minister and director of worship and he is active in Cursillo which is a world-wide movement in the Catholic Church helping men and women lead their lives as Christians.