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Gary Pedigo re-elected Texas State Legislative Board Chairman

INDEPENDENCE, Ohio, April 26 — The BLET’s Texas State Legislative Board held its 15th quadrennial meeting from April 7-11, 2019, in Austin, Texas. Brother Gary R. Pedigo, BLET Division 177 (Denison, Texas), was reelected to his second term as Chairman.

Brother Pedigo was elected Second Vice Chairman at the Texas State Legislative Board’s 13th quadrennial meeting in 2011, and then Chairman at the 14th quadrennial meeting in 2015. A Union Pacific locomotive engineer, Brother Pedigo has held continuous membership in the BLET since January 1, 1979. According to the Texas SLB Bylaws, terms of office for all newly elected officers begin on June 1.

Brother Benjamin L. Wright, Division 189 (Fort Worth, Texas), was elected to his second term as 1st Vice Chairman. Brother Larry J. Williams, Division 944 (Dallas, Texas), was elected to his first term as 2nd Vice Chairman. Brother Scott J. Piekarski, Division 620 (Fort Worth, Texas), was elected to his third consecutive term as Secretary-Treasurer. Elected to serve as alternate officers were: Alternate 2nd Vice Chairman W.B. (Bryce) Dondero, Division 573 (Greenville, Texas); and Alternate Secretary-Treasurer J.T. (Tye) Airhart, Division 944 (Dallas, Texas).

Elected to serve as Trustees were: Ryan F. Melconian, Division 62 (Houston, Texas); Joseph A. Walker, Division 775 (Victoria, Texas); and Guadalupe V. Rodriguez, Division 566 (Del Rio, Texas).

Representing the BLET National Division at the meeting were: National President Dennis R. Pierce; First Vice President E. Lee Pruitt; Vice President & National Legislative Representative John P. Tolman; National Vice President Michael D. Priester; National Vice President J. Alan Holdcraft; Director of Regulator Affairs Vincent G. Verna; and Director of Political and Legislative Affairs Robert F. Hagan.

“On behalf of the National Division, I congratulate Brother Pedigo and all officers of the Texas State Legislative Board,” President Pierce said. “I also thank them for their service to our Brotherhood.”

Guests included General Chairmen who represent Texas BLET members, including: Jeff Thurman, BNSF (former STL-SF) General Committee of Adjustment (GCA); Dana Marlow, Union Pacific-Southern Region GCA; and David Spradlin, Kansas City Southern GCA.

Chairmen of neighboring State Legislative Boards were also in attendance, including: Arlin Todd, Louisiana State Legislative Board Chairman; Wayne Denson, Arkansas State Legislative Board Chairman; and Craig Fack, Oklahoma State Legislative Board Chairman.

On April 11, members of the Texas State Legislative Board lobbied on behalf of the state’s two-person crew bill, H.B. 742, at the State Capitol in Austin. Texas AFL-CIO President Rick Levy and SMART TD State Director Kamron Saunders addressed the group before the start of the lobbying effort to discuss issues affecting railroad workers.

The Texas State Legislative Board represents more than 3,200 active and 1,600 retired members in 41 Divisions.

Friday, April 26, 2019
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