President Mark Federici with Metro-Washington Council Director, Jos Williams.

President Mark Federici with Metro-Washington Council President, Jos Williams.

By Union City—”We have a long road ahead of us,” warned Teamsters Local 639 president Tommy Ratliff Saturday night as he accepted the 2014 JC Turner Award for Outstanding Trades Unionist of the Year .“Everyone here knows what’s going on around us; we see what’s happening. We have a big fight on our hands. But,” Ratliff pledged, “we’ll all be in it together.” 

Thanking Metro Council president Jos Williams and the Metro Council for the award and recognition, Ratliff also accepted the award “on behalf of all of those who have gone before me, who made lives different for other people today.” He also thanked “the entire team at Teamsters Local 639,” as well as his family, “for their hard work and support.” Hundreds of labor, political and community allies mingled and celebrated local labor solidarity as they honored the 2014 Evening With Labor Award winners, including Ratliff, COPE Award-winners Roxana Mejia, Painters District 51 and Larry Greenhill Sr., IBEW 26; Organizing Award-winners Painters District 51 and the Mid-Atlantic Laborers; Golden Picket Sign Award-winners Newspaper Guild 32035 and OPEIU 2; Thomas M. Bradley Community Services Award-winner OPEIU Local 2/AFGE Community Services Committee and Outstanding Citizen/Ally award-winner DC Jobs with Justice. Photos of the award-winners, as well as from the reception and dinner, have been posted on the Council’s Facebook page, where they can be tagged, shared and downloaded. US Senator Ben Cardin and DC Council Chairman Phil Mendelson echoed Ratliff’s call to arms and pledged “solidarity in the battles ahead.”
photo by Chris Langford