Jerry Dee, RVP Greater Toronto Region, received the honorary title of Life Member at the 2008 Triennial Convention.
The award was presented by Betty Bannon, National President.
In the photo: Jerry Dee, Betty Bannon
Jerry was recruited into the Union, Local 013 of UTE, in 1985 by Cathie Figueira and Betty Bannon as a steward, over a perceived injustice in my work area. He lost the case but was hooked. On September 8th 1987, Jerry was elected a member of UTE Local 013, Executive Council. One of the few dates which is firmly planted in his mind because it was his 39th birthday. He also remained an active steward while on council.
The political side of the Union, never much appealed to Jerry, as his true love was in the membership service area. Defending member’s rights always came first for him. However, when UTE lost the auditors to that other group and bore a large loss of our activist in the Local, it became apparent that the void wasn’t going to fill itself.
Jerry continued on Council and was also appointed as Chief Steward of the local, eventually becoming VP and then President of Local 013. When management in their infinite wisdom, divided Toronto into four Revenue Canada offices and flung the members across the Greater Toronto Area, Local 013 chose to remain one Local. It was a real challenge for the Local to maintain, but it was worth the utter frustration they caused management.
Times, however change, and eventually the office Jerry worked in parted from Local 013 in the mid 1990’s and became Local 048 in North York. He had worked in that office to help bring this about and became the Local President, a position that he held until the National UTE Convention of 2005.
At that Convention Jerry was asked by the five Locals in the Greater Toronto Region to accept the position of RVP after the sudden and untimely death of Sister Diana Gee. This had never been his ambition but circumstances often dictate the course of our lives.
At the National Convention of UTE in July 2008 Jerry retired from the Union for the only reason that he planned on retiring from CRA in September of that year.
Over the course of his union career, Jerry participated in and ran more strikes than he cares to remember, but oh so much adrenalin. He was an activist for EAP and Safety and Health during all of his union years and ultimately chaired the National UTE EAP Committee and was a member of the National Honours and Awards Committee. According to Jerry, the most frightening event of his days was chairing a National EAP Conference in Ottawa. The best times he says though, were training activist to fight for member’s rights.
From the day Jerry took on the fight and lost, over the perceived injustice in his work section he never looked back or questioned his future in UTE.