What I’m saying, doing and thinking

Upcoming Events

January 8, 2020
Tukwila WA
Iron Workers Local 86

January 17-18, 2020
Chicago IL
Electrical Workers Minority Caucus National Meeting

January 28, 2020
Portland OR
Sheet Metal Local 16

February 11, 2020
Boise ID
Sheet Metal Local 55

February 17-18, 2020
Cincinnati OH
Iron Workers Int’l. Political Academy

March 16, 2020
Spokane WA
Iron Workers Local 16

March 17, 2020
Spokane WA
Sheet Metal Workers Local 55

April 4, 2020
Medford OR
Int’l Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 659

April 7, 2020
Everett WA
Sheet Metal Local 66

April 13, 2020
Pasco WA
Sheet Metal Local 55

April 14, 2020
Dupont WA
Sheet Metal Local 66

April 21, 2020
Portland OR
Sheet Metal Local 16

April 25-26, 2020
Wichita KS
United Food and Commercial Workers Local 2

April 27-28, 2020
Lake of the Ozarks MO
United Food and Commercial Workers Local 655

May 13, 2020
Napa CA
California Pipe Trades Council State Convention

June 24, 2020
Rapid City SD
Int’l Brotherhood of Electrical Workers 11th District Progress Meeting

June 27, 2020
Albuquerque NM
New Mexico State Federation of Labor Convention

October 6, 2020
Everett WA
Sheet Metal Local 66

October 13, 2020
Dupont WA
Sheet Metal Local 66

Workshop: “Fighting for Our Unions, Democracy and Future in the Age of Trump”

 I launched this new interactive workshop to inspire and help union activists and community members be more effective in fighting forward against the Trump regime, its allies and Corporate America.  This video version is titled:  “Fighting for Our Unions, Our Democracy and Our Future.”  It is critical that we understand that our ancestors faced the “divide and conquer” strategies of Corporate America and its allies.  These strategies were based on racism, sexism, anti-immigrant hatred and other forms of bigotry and are being used once again to divide working people and our nation.  Learning from our ancestors’ successes and failures is critical in our efforts to fight forward toward a better future for all of us.  Click here to view the video and its Powerpoint.

“Your inspirational message to our delegates was educational and thought provoking.” – Lonnie StephensonInternational President, IBEW

“Your presentation was impressive. We will be in touch.” – Richard LaniganInternational President, OPEIU

“Mark presented at our National Electrical Workers Minority Caucus’ 28th Annual Leadership Conference in Detroit. His presentation was riveting as he held the delegates’ attention throughout. Mark’s workshops were overflowing and delegates overwhelmingly requested he be invited back. Thank you.” – Keith EdwardsNational President, EWMC, Detroit MI

“Your presentation was indeed AWESOME! You were personally inspiring. I hope we can bring you back to speak to a larger audience. In Unity.” – Vonda McDanielPresident, Central Labor Council of Nashville and Middle Tennessee and Executive Council Member of the national AFL-CIO.

Making the American Dream Real for Everyone


This video is my 2018 speech in Seattle at the Cement Masons Local 528’s Orientation Day for new apprentices and union members.  The topic was “Making the American Dream Real for Everyone.” Its tells an updated 125-year history of working people’s fight to build our labor movement and the American Dream.  It provides inspiration and valuable lessons about our successes and failures and what we can learn from our history to help us fight forward toward a better future for all.  It is an updated version of the 2013 IBEW video seen below. Click here to view the Powerpoint presentation.

This video is my speech at IBEW’s National Membership Development meeting in Las Vegas in 2013, my original presentation on the 125-year history of working people’s fight to build our labor movement and the American Dream providing inspiration and valuable lessons about our successes and failures and what we can learn from our history to help us fight forward toward a better future. Click here to view that Powerpoint presentation.

Newsletter #3 Published

My third newsletter is a compilation of analysis and tactical solutions to aid in our struggle in strengthening democracy and building a more just, equitable and sustainable world. My central argument is that the Trump regime with Republicans would escalate their years-long efforts to suppress voting to steal future elections. Check it out and subscribe now!

Here are newsletters #1 and #2.

The theft of the next election is already under way

If you care about the right of the people to fairly choose our elected officials, you should be paying close attention to these systematic efforts: The theft of the next election is under way.

The Democratic Party is losing the working class

Understanding why is the key to rebuilding a populist progressive movement. This was published recently in the The Stand, The Democratic Party is losing the working class


Scroll down or use the links above to find out about upcoming events, endorsements, and more. If you want to connect please email me or visit my Facebook page.

Fighting for Our Democracy and Our Future in the Age of Trump

Dear Union Brothers and Sisters:

I want to continue helping you build a stronger, more inclusive labor movement in the coming months and years and build momentum to win the critical 2018 and 2020 elections.  Since 2011, I have given 366 speeches, interactive workshops and trainings in 18 states across the country.  I have spoken to national, regional, state, and local conventions and meetings of 27 international Unions and their affiliates, state federations, local labor and building trades councils, and apprenticeship programs.  I will go anywhere in the country to help you move our fight forward toward a better future.

My seven workshops listed below can be presented in an interactive format or as a stand-alone speech.  They can be tailored to your needs.

  1. “Fighting for Our Unions, Our Democracy and Our Future in the Age of Trump” draws powerful connections between the “divide and conquer” strategies used by Corporate America and its allies 100 years ago and their use again today. What can be learn from our ancestors’ successes and failures that will make us more effective in building a powerful labor and people’s movement to take our country back.
  2. “Making the American Dream Real for Everyone” focuses on the rise and fall of unions and our allies over the past 125 years in our fight to share fairly in the wealth we produce and build a more just and equitable country, and how we can rebuild our power.
  3. “Winning Big in Hard Times” explores the rise and fall of unions and our allies in strengthening our democracy and how we can reclaim our democracy.
  4. “Which Side of History Are You On?” centers on Corporate America’s counterattack against our movement and our allies over the past 40 years and how disunity between labor and our potential community allies and movements weakened us. Most importantly we learn about major successes that new labor/communities alliances are winning.
  5. Speaking from the Heart to Win Community Allies” encourages participants to speak from their hearts and use better messaging techniques as they reach out to non-union workers and current and potential community allies.
  6. “Reaching Out to Young Workers and Young People” explores the generation gaps of the 1960s and today and stimulates discussions about better ways to encourage our very progressive youth to greater activism in our unions and communities.
  7. “Train the Trainer” teaches participants a range of skills needed to run workshops of different contents and varying lengths. These skills can be used to run workshops that are content-focused like the “American Dream” workshop as well as a communications or messaging workshop like the “Speaking from the Heart.

My work combines personal and family stories and experiences, finding our common ground of economic hard times and our concerns about the future for ourselves and our young people and our shared American Dream.  We explore critical lessons about how we move forward to change the direction of our labor movement and country.  The work also highlights significant victories that labor and our allies are winning across the country which are largely hidden from us.

I look forward to working with you in the months and years ahead.  Please feel free to contact me.

In closing, I want you to know I donate all of my speaking fees to progressive pro-labor organizations and candidates and people in need.  This is my way of paying forward the great blessings that my family has received from the decades-long fights of organized labor.

Mark M. McDermott

Endorsements

He is one of the best at informing and motivating

He presents a unique perspective from a historical point of view by comparing labor’s modern day challenges with the overwhelming challenges of workers’ organizing efforts in the 19th and 20th centuries. His personal story of how he became a union activist makes for a very interesting and compelling discussion about not only the labor movement but activism in general. I have attended more conferences and listened to more speakers than I can count in my 43 years in the IBEW. Many were interesting and informative but very few as compelling as Mark. He is one of the best at informing and motivating.

Don Siegel, IBEW 3rd District International VP, Pennsylvania

2017-01-24T15:52:58+00:00

Don Siegel, IBEW 3rd District International VP, Pennsylvania

He presents a unique perspective from a historical point of view by comparing labor’s modern day challenges with the overwhelming challenges of workers’ organizing efforts in the 19th and 20th centuries. His personal story of how he became a union activist makes for a very interesting and compelling discussion about not only the labor movement but activism in general. I have attended more conferences and listened to more speakers than I can count in my 43 years in the IBEW. Many were interesting and informative but very few as compelling as Mark. He is one of the best at informing and motivating.

I strongly recommend Mark

Mark inspired and electrified our Region 9 leadership conference with a clear message of how we, as organized labor and working people, can once again lead our nation toward greater justice and security for all. I strongly recommend Mark to any union wanting to inspire and educate their leaders and activists about the road forward.

Cindy Estrada, International Vice President, United Auto Workers Union

2017-01-24T15:56:34+00:00

Cindy Estrada, International Vice President, United Auto Workers Union

Mark inspired and electrified our Region 9 leadership conference with a clear message of how we, as organized labor and working people, can once again lead our nation toward greater justice and security for all. I strongly recommend Mark to any union wanting to inspire and educate their leaders and activists about the road forward.

We get a sense of optimism and hope

What is most valuable about Mark’s workshops is the recognition that as we remember our history, we get a sense of optimism and hope that when we come together and focus on what we have in common, rather than what divides us, we can overcome seemingly impossible odds and make progressive change.

Jeff Johnson, President, Washington State Labor Council

2017-01-24T15:58:03+00:00

Jeff Johnson, President, Washington State Labor Council

What is most valuable about Mark’s workshops is the recognition that as we remember our history, we get a sense of optimism and hope that when we come together and focus on what we have in common, rather than what divides us, we can overcome seemingly impossible odds and make progressive change.

When we were flat broke Mark did another free workshop for us

It is unbelievable that when we were flat broke, Mark did another free workshop for us and we got more financial and community support for our struggle to organize farm workers. The audience was energized with the will to fight on and we raised money to help us continue to move forward.

Ramon Torres, President, Familias Unidas Por La Justicia (independent farm worker union), Bellingham WA

2017-04-26T21:02:17+00:00

Ramon Torres, President, Familias Unidas Por La Justicia (independent farm worker union), Bellingham WA

It is unbelievable that when we were flat broke, Mark did another free workshop for us and we got more financial and community support for our struggle to organize farm workers. The audience was energized with the will to fight on and we raised money to help us continue to move forward.

What are others saying about my work?