UAW president Teed retires from Maytag

UAW president Teed retires from Maytag
 
Date May 02, 2005
Section(s) Local News
Brief  
 
By JOHN JENNINGS

NDN Staff Writer

With 27 years as a union man, Pat Teed has seen some changes. He thought the elimination of the wringer washer in 1983 was a big change. Teed was looking back on 36 years with Maytag on Friday, as well as looking forward to retirement, during an open house at the UAW Local 997 Union Hall.

“I’m leaving UAW Local 997 in good hands with Ted,” Teed said of Local 997 vice-president Ted Johnson, who will succeed him as president. “I have full confidence in Ted.”

Teed has worked with Johnson for the past six years.

“I went through a lot of contracts with him, so he’s fully qualified.”

Teed said the challenge for Maytag in the future is to be a good corporate citizen.

“The corporation needs to plan for a future that involves Newton,” Teed said. “They need to take care of the company, the employees, its customers and the shareholders. Newton is the heart and heritage of Maytag. We ate a big hunk of the wage and benefit package. The people in the plant are healthy and well-educated, they have good work ethics and are more than willing to run the plant. We beleive in working hard, and we have good quality platforms. So, the company must come up with a platform we can make in Newton,” Teed said.

Teed also gave credit to his wife Ronda for sticking with him over the years.

“She’s been very understanding and very helpful,” through the many long nights and days of contract negotiations, Teed said.

Teed joined UAW Local 997 on June 25, 1969. He became area representative in June 1978, chief Plant One representative in 1984 and president in June 1999.

Today, Johnson is now the UAW Local 997 president, and he says he has no crystal ball to see the future of Maytag.

“We’re working with the company as hard as we can for cost reduction, and we’re putting our heart and soul in keeping jobs here in Newton,” Johnson said. “The members are feeling pretty beat down, but my message is they are doing what they are paid to do: They’re showing up and doing their jobs.”

Johnson said there were many outside influences on Maytag beyond the union’s control.

“Foreign competition, steel tariffs and increasing costs of medical and drug coverage have all been big influences,” Johnson said. “This UAW Local has always worked with Maytag to achieve success and good working conditions, and we’ll continue to do so.”

A retirement party for Teed is scheduled for Saturday at 7 p.m. at the American Legion in Newton.

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