(WXYZ) — UAW President Rory L. Gamble announced his decision to retire on June 30, 2021.
Gamble informed staff at noon Friday and notified the UAW International Executive Board (IEB).
According the UAW Constitution, the IEB elects a successor to serve the rest of the term through June 2022.
“I said on Day One I would hand over the keys to this treasured institution as a clean union,” said Gamble, 65. “My original intent as a UAW Vice President was to retire at the end of June 2021, and after looking at the progress we have made and the best interests of UAW members for a stable transfer of power, this is the right time for me to turn over the reins.”
Gamble says he hopes his retirement will usher in a period of multiple-term presidents for the UAW. “You need time to settle in and look at the long-range focus and priorities of our membership,” he said. “Especially in this time of vast technological change.”
Rory Gamble helped usher in a comprehensive ethics reform initiative which saved the union from a potential government takeover. He helped navigate the UAW and American manufacturing through the pandemic and semiconductor crisis.
“I’m blessed to be able to spend time with my family and continue to work giving back to the community,” said Gamble. “I’ll always look back on the sisters and brothers who together made my time in the UAW so special. And although I never intended to be UAW President, I hope that my chapter in our history will long be remembered for righting the ship, facing a once-in-a-lifetime pandemic head on and saving lives, while setting up my union for a bright future. As a team we accomplished much to be proud of.”
Gamble says he will remain active in community work.
More on UAW President Rory L. Gamble:
President Rory L. Gamble was elected to the office of vice president of the UAW in June 2018 at the union’s 37th Constitutional Convention in Detroit. Gamble previously served three terms as director of UAW Region 1A. On November 3, 2019, he assumed the position of UAW Acting President, appointed by the International Executive Board (IEB). On December 5, 2019, the UAW IEB named Acting President Gamble to fill the vacancy of President until the June 2022 Convention.
Gamble, a welder fixture repairman, joined the UAW in 1974 when he was hired at the Ford Motor Company Dearborn Frame Plant. He immediately became active in UAW Local 600 and has since served in numerous elected and appointed positions. In 1975, Local 600 members elected him to serve as a plant trustee.
Since 1987 Gamble’s assignments have included local union health and safety coordinator, employee support services program, education director, civil rights coordinator, fitness center coordinator, and family services and learning center, coordinator. He has served as director of Local 600 Ford units, including Dearborn Engine and Fuel Tank, Dearborn Truck Plant, Milan, Industrial Athlete, and Dearborn Frame. Other assignments have included retirees’ liaison and coordinator of the Rouge Rehabilitation Center.In 1998 and 2003, Gamble served on the UAW-Ford National Negotiating Team. From 1993 to 2002, he was elected to three terms as the local’s recording secretary. Gamble was elected first vice president of Local 600 in 2002 and re-elected in 2005. Gamble has received numerous awards including the Spirit of Detroit award in 1999; the 2006 Horace L. Sheffield Jr. Humanitarian Award; and the 2008 Minority Women’s Network (Detroit chapter) Man of the Year award. He is a member of the Coalition of Black Trade Unionists; the Trade Union Leaders Council; the Michigan Humane Society and a life member of the NAACP. He serves on the board of Bridging Communities, a grassroots collaborative of Southwest Detroit businesses, labor organizations, churches, and residents. Gamble is a graduate of the labor studies program at Wayne State University. He lives in Detroit with his fiancé Bridget and is the father of five children: Anthony, Rory Jr., Raenard, Rashaun, and Rahshidah, and grandfather to 34 grandchildren.