Tom Baca is new Western States IVP

Intl. Pres. Newton. B. Jones (r.) swears in Tom Baca as the new International vice president for the Western States.

Joe Stinger retires after 40 years of service

The Intl. executive council voted J. Tom Baca into the office of International vice president for the Western States effective January 31. Baca, BM-ST for Local 549 (Pittsburg, Calif.), was nominated by International President Newton B. Jones to take the position vacated by IVP Joe Stinger’s retirement.

Stinger expressed his strong endorsement of Baca, saying, “Tom will do an excellent job in representing the Western States membership and as a member of the International Executive Council. I have complete confidence in Tom’s ability.”

Baca joins established leadership team

J. Tom Baca has been business manager of Local 549 since March 2005, beginning his Boilermaker career as a field construction worker in 1969. He worked his way up the ranks, from steward to job superintendent, earning an appointment as an assistant business manager in 1994. He has served as both trustee and chairman of trustees on the Local 549 executive board.

In 2005, Baca was appointed union trustee to the Boilermaker-Blacksmith National Pension Trust. He also served on the Law Committee for the 31st Consolidated Convention, held in July 2006.

A third-generation Boilermaker, Baca is son to John, a retired field construction Boilermaker out of Local 104 (Seattle), and grandson to Fred, a retired shipyard worker out of Local 72 (Portland).

Baca has been president of both the Contra Costa Building Trades and Central Labor Council, and a member of the executive board for that area’s NAACP chapter.

Baca says he is honored that IP Jones, IVP Stinger, and the entire International Executive Council had the confidence to nominate and vote him into this important position.

“As the Western States International vice president, I know that my principal role will be to provide service to our members,” Baca stated. “I will never forget that, and every decision I make for this great organization will be for the good of the entire membership.”

Stinger calls end to career that began in 1967

Joseph A. “Joe” Stinger first retired on January 1, 2003, as administrative assistant to International President Charles W. Jones and director of the Boilermakers’ Railroad Division. He continued to serve as a consultant to the International, only to be called back to active duty four months later as International vice president for the Western States.

Now, Stinger, 61, has retired again, effective January 31, 2007. This time he says it is for good. He is long overdue for the retirement he planned four years ago. Those plans include spending more time with his wife of 29 years, Vivian; with his children, Amanda and Nicole (both members of the International staff); traveling with his fifth-wheel trailer; and enjoying his life-long passion of fishing.

Stinger is one of 14 children of Phillip and Mildred Stinger. His father, now deceased, was a coal miner and president of one of the first United Mine Worker local unions in Western Pennsylvania.

Stinger began his Boilermaker career with the Monongahela Railroad in November 1967, joining Local 747, McKees Rocks, Pa., in January 1968. Three months later, he began two years of military service, completing one tour of duty in Vietnam with the elite Airborne Rangers as a team leader and platoon sergeant.

After his honorable discharge, Stinger returned to work at the Monongahela Railroad and earned his teaching certificate from the University of Pittsburgh. He supplemented his railroad income by teaching evening college courses and substituting at the high school level during his vacations.

Stinger was elected general chairman of the Eastern Region in 1977, and was reelected in 1981. In 1983, he became an International representative, attending the Harvard University Trade Program in 1984, the same year he was elected supervisor of the Henry Clay Township and appointed director of the Boilermakers Railroad Division. In 1985, he became an assistant to the International president and was named administrative assistant to IP C. W. Jones in 1996, a position he held until his first retirement in January 2003.