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MCLAUGHLIN ELECTED RAIL LABOR CHIEF

 WASHINGTON, April 30 /PRNewswire/ -- The Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers (BLE) today announced that Ronald P. McLaughlin, the union's international president, has been elected by acclamation to be chairman of the Railway Labor Executives Association (RLEA). The RLEA consists of the chief executives and representatives from the 12 standard rail labor unions, representing most of the 232,000 railroad employees in the United States.
 McLaughlin becomes the first BLE international president ever to hold the top RLEA post. He succeeds Edward P. McEntee, vice-president of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. The BLE president recently served as the RLEA's executive secretary-treasurer and vice-chairman.
 "I am honored to accept the additional duties of guiding the development of Rail Labor's legislative and collective bargaining strategies and policies," said McLaughlin. "I also believe that my election is a sign that the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers is once again establishing a position of respect within Rail Labor.
 "We have been making substantial progress, and now I would like to facilitate the coordination of all rail unions to make progress on behalf of America's railroad employees. My philosophy has always been that no one person can effectively lead any organization by him or herself," he added.
 W. D. "Dan" Pickett, president of the Brotherhood of Railroad Signalmen, was elected RLEA vice-chairman. Robert J. Irvin, president of the American Train Dispatchers Association, continues in the office of executive secretary-treasurer. BLE U.S. National Legislative Representative & International Vice-President Leroy D. Jones continues serving as RLEA's executive director, in Washington.


BRIEF BIO:
 After serving in the U.S. Marine Corps, McLaughlin began his railway career as a fireman on the Chicago, Milwaukee, St. Paul & Pacific Railroad, aka, "Milwaukee Road," in 1948, and joined his union.
 In 1960, he was elected local chairman of his BLE local division in Kansas City, Mo. He was then elected local chairman of his division in Ottumwa, Iowa, where he served from 1969-1981. During this time he also served as his division's secretary-treasurer and legislative representative.
 In 1971, he became vice-chairman of the BLE General Committee of Adjustment on the Milwaukee Road, and was elected its general chairman in 1981. His father, J.H. McLaughlin, served in the same office from 1951-1966. Both men were noted for their negotiating skills.
 Besides working as a locomotive engineer, he also played semi-pro baseball for 10 years, and was offered a contract by the New York Yankees. He was also elected a city councilman in Pleasant Valley, Mo.
 In 1991, he was elected international president of the BLE. Prior to his election that August, he had served as first vice-president of the union. Since his election, the BLE's membership roll has increased, in spite of decreasing employment in the rail industry.
 In 1992, McLaughlin was elected vice-chairman of the Railway Labor Executives' Association, the rail industry's policy group for labor.
 Born Nov. 13, 1929, in Kansas City, Mo., McLaughlin and his wife, Barbara, reside in Avon Lake, Ohio, a suburb of Cleveland. In his spare time, he is a very enthusiastic and capable golfer.
 The 51,000-member Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers is America's oldest, autonomous national bargaining union. It was founded on May 8, 1863. Its international headquarters is in Cleveland.
 On another historical note, before 1920, BLE Grand Chief Engineer (i.e., international president) Warren S. Stone led an un-named, informal predecessor group of affiliated rail unions. After World War I, various rail unions formally organized for the purpose of promoting federal regulation of the rail industry, in the interests of safety. The RLEA was officially founded in 1926.
 -0- 4/30/93
 /CONTACT: Stephen W. FitzGerald, Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers, 216-241-2630, ext. 251 or Leroy D. Jones, RLEA, 202-347-7936/


CO: Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers ST: Ohio IN: TRN SU: PER

KL -- CL016 -- 3397 04/30/93 16:32 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Apr 30, 1993
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