Michael Sacco is president of the Seafarers International Union of North America, AFL-CIO - a federation of 12 autonomous unions representing 80,000 merchant mariners; industrial, service and government workers; and others in various professions. He first was elected to the position by the SIUNA executive board in June 1988.
Sacco also is president of his home union - the SIUNA-affiliated Seafarers International Union; Atlantic, Gulf, Lakes and Inland Waters (AGLIW). The district's membership is composed of mariners, boatmen and fishermen working aboard U.S.-flag deep sea ships, Great Lakes vessels and inland waters and harbor boats. It includes mariners from the former National Maritime Union, which merged into the SIU in 2001.
In November 1991, at its 19th Biennial Constitutional Convention, Sacco was elected a vice president of the AFL-CIO, the federation of 56 national and international unions representing more than 12.5 million workers in the United States.
Since 1988, Sacco has served as president of the AFL-CIO Maritime Trades Department, representing 21 unions with members engaged in shipping and maritime-related trades. He most recently was reelected to the post during the MTD's 2013 convention.
From 1980 to 1988, Sacco directed the SIU AGLIW's Great Lakes and Inland Waters division as vice president. Based in St. Louis, he served as secretary-treasurer of the Greater St. Louis Area and Vicinity Port Council (an MTD chartered organization) and as an executive board member of the Missouri State AFL-CIO.
Sacco also was vice president of the Seafarers Harry Lundeberg School of Seamanship from 1968 to 1979. The school, located on the grounds of the Paul Hall Center for Maritime Training and Education in Piney Point, Md., prepares men and women for a career aboard U.S.-flag commercial vessels and provides upgrading opportunities to active members.
Michael Sacco joined the SIU in 1958 and shipped aboard U.S.-flag merchant vessels until he came ashore during the 1960s to serve the SIU in a succession of union posts, including those of patrolman, port agent and headquarters representative.
A native of Brooklyn, N.Y., Sacco served in the U.S. Air Force from 1954 to 1958. He was born February 14, 1937. He is married, and he and his wife, Sophie, have five children.
Augustin "Augie" Tellez is the executive vice president of the Seafarers International Union. He was appointed to that position in November 2005.
Previously, he served as the union’s vice president of contracts and contracts enforcement from 1991-2005. In that post, he managed the SIU's collective bargaining and contract implementation efforts throughout all segments of the industry, including deep sea, Great Lakes, inland and passenger vessels.
Tellez was appointed as vice president in 1991 by the SIU executive board. He was elected to a full term by the union's membership in 1992 and reelected in 1996, 2000 and 2004.
He also serves as a trustee for the Paul Hall Center for Maritime Training and Education - a world-class, comprehensive vocational education institution located in Piney Point, Md. Additionally, Tellez chairs the Paul Hall Center's advisory board, composed of high-ranking industry representatives from labor, management and government.
Serving under the administration of SIU President Michael Sacco, Tellez has helped lead the union to numerous contractual gains and improved benefits for SIU members and their families.
As a Paul Hall Center trustee and advisory board chairman, he has helped spearhead the construction of two new, unsurpassed additions at the school designed to promote shipboard safety: the Joseph Sacco Fire Fighting and Safety School, which opened in 1999 and specifically is tailored for marine fire fighting training; and a state-of-the-art simulator building that houses top-notch simulators for shiphandling, engine room operations, liquid cargo procedures, crane operations and more. The latter opened in October 2000.
Tellez also worked closely with the development team that put together the union's Coast Guard-accepted training record book - a groundbreaking document first published in 1997 that is designed to help both individual SIU members and SIU-contracted companies comply with complex international maritime regulations.
Since July 2011, he has served on the U.S. Transportation Department's Marine Transportation System National Advisory Council. In 2017, he was appointed to serve on the federal U.S. Maritime Workforce Working Group Subcommittee, which is part of the council. The subcommittee is tasked with examining and assessing the size of the pool of United States citizen mariners necessary to support the U.S.-flag fleet in times of national emergency.
Tellez worked his way up through the ranks, starting with the SIU in 1975 after graduating from the entry program at the Paul Hall Center's Lundeberg School of Seamanship. He sailed from the union's Brooklyn, N.Y. hiring hall as an able bodied seaman before coming ashore.
He served the union in various capacities in Jacksonville, Fla.; Mobile, Ala.; Tampa; Paducah, Ky.; Baltimore; St. Louis; and Houston. In 1980, he became the port agent for the SIU's headquarters port, located in Brooklyn.
Tellez in 1987 relocated to what had become the union's new headquarters in Camp Springs, Md., where he served as special assistant to the president. That same year, he was elected as the vice president for the Seafarers International Union of North America - the parent union of the SIU's seagoing component. A year later, he became the assistant vice president for contracts and contracts enforcement.
David Heindel has been the secretary-treasurer of the Seafarers International Union; Atlantic, Gulf, Lakes and Inland Waters District/National Maritime Union, since February 1997.
Heindel began his career with the SIU in 1973, when he graduated from the program for entry-level mariners conducted at the union’s affiliated training facility in Piney Point, Maryland. He primarily sailed aboard deep-sea vessels as a member of the engine department, before coming ashore in 1980 to work as a patrolman in his native New Orleans.
Among the other jobs he has held with the union are patrolman at the SIU halls in Philadelphia and Baltimore, port agent at the Philadelphia hall and assistant vice president of the SIU’s Gulf Coast Region.
Heindel also formerly served as a vice president of the Pennsylvania State AFL-CIO and the Philadelphia Central Labor Council. He also was secretary-treasurer of the Delaware Valley and Vicinity Maritime Port Council of the AFL-CIO's Maritime Trades Department.
In August 2002, he was elected vice chairman of the International Transport Workers’ Federation’s (ITF’s) Seafarers’ Section. Since then, he extensively has worked – both domestically and as part of U.S. delegations in international forums – with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the International Labor Organization and the International Maritime Organization on shipboard and port-security issues as well as the international project for a new Seafarers Identity Document. He helped protect mariners’ rights under the International Ship and Port Facility Security Code (which took effect July 2004), and he helped secure a new agreement for tens of thousands of mariners worldwide under the ITF’s International Bargaining Forum.
During the ITF Congress in August 2006, he was elected to a four-year term as first vice chair of the Seafarers' Section.
At the ITF Congress in August 2010, he was elected chair of the ITF’s Seafarers’ Section, thereby becoming only the second American ever to hold that post. He was re-elected at the ITF Congress in August 2014.
In 2015, he was appointed to the U.S. Labor Advisory Committee for Trade Negotiations and Trade Policy.
George Tricker is the vice president for contracts and contracts enforcement for the Seafarers International Union. He has served in that position since being appointed by the union’s executive board in November 2005. He was elected in 2008 and re-elected in 2012.
Tricker has negotiated hundreds of SIU contracts and has been instrumental in helping secure gains for the rank-and-file membership. Those achievements include improved health and pension benefits, wage increases, work rules that promote shipboard safety, and more.
He is also a member of the Seafarers Appeals Board, which governs and protects members’ shipping rights.
A native of Brooklyn, N.Y., Tricker in 1979 completed the trainee program at the Paul Hall Center for Maritime Training and Education. He sailed in the deck department aboard deep sea vessels and also sailed in the inland division with Crowley. He upgraded several times at the Paul Hall Center before coming ashore in 1990 to work for the union.
In 1991, Tricker served as a patrolman on the West Coast. Later that year, he became port agent in Wilmington, Calif. Tricker was active in the local port council and the central labor council throughout his years in Wilmington.
In 1997, Tricker transferred to SIU headquarters after being appointed assistant vice president contracts – a position to which he was elected in 2000 and again in 2004. He extensively has been involved in most of the union’s contract negotiations since then, and in many cases played a leading role in helping secure favorable agreements.
Among other philanthropic endeavors, Tricker founded the annual Seafarers Waterfront Classic, which raises money for the Wounded Warrior Anglers and the Paul Hall Center’s waterfront restoration project.
Dean Corgey is vice president of the Seafarers International Union’s Gulf Coast Region.
A lifelong resident of Houston, Corgey began his career with the SIU in 1973 after graduating from the entry training program for merchant mariners at the Paul Hall Center for Maritime Training and Education in Piney Point, Md.
He later sailed as a chief engineer for G&H Towing Company and continued his vocational education at Piney Point, where he earned a chief engineer/limited ocean Coast Guard License.
Corgey came ashore in 1979 and worked in Houston as an organizer for the SIU. He subsequently worked as a patrolman and, in 1986, became the SIU’s Houston port agent. He became an assistant vice president in 1988 and vice president of the Gulf Coast Region in 1990.
Corgey also serves as a vice president of the Texas AFL-CIO; as secretary-treasurer of the West Gulf Ports Council of the AFL-CIO Maritime Trades Department; and on the executive board of the Harris County AFL-CIO. In January 2013, he was appointed by the Houston City Council to serve as a member of the Port Commission of the Port of Houston Authority.
He also served two terms on the Coast Guard’s Towing Safety Advisory Committee. He currently serves as a member of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Area Maritime Security Committee for the Port of Houston/Galveston and as chairman of the City of Houston Ethics Committee. He is a member of the board of directors for the Houston Maritime Association.
Corgey is married to Theresa Mangiameli Corgey. They have two sons and are active members of First Baptist Church.
Kermett Mangram is vice president of the Seafarers International Union’s Government Services Division.
A graduate of the entry training program for merchant mariners at the Paul Hall Center for Maritime Training and Education in Piney Point, Md., his first assignment was aboard the Sea-Land Seattle as a steward assistant in 1978.
The Jacksonville, Fla. native came ashore in 1980 as an instructor at the school. He became a patrolman in the port of New York in 1981, then port agent there in 1987.
Mangram was named by the SIU executive board in 1992 as assistant vice president for contracts and contract enforcement. He was reelected to the post in 1996.
He succeeded Roy “Buck” Mercer as vice president of the union’s Government Services Division upon Mercer’s retirement in 1999. Mangram was reelected the next year.
As vice president of the SIU’s Government Services Division, Mangram, who holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration, is based in Norfolk, Va. The Government Services Division represents unlicensed crew members aboard Military Sealift Command (MSC) Fleet vessels.
Tom Orzechowski is vice president of the Seafarers International Union’s Lakes and Inland Waters District.
A native of Camden, N.J., Orzechowski graduated in 1991 from the trainee program at the Paul Hall Center for Maritime Training and Education in Piney Point, Md.
He sailed in the deck department, both in the deep sea and inland divisions.
Orzechowski came ashore in 1996, when he was elected port agent at the SIU hall in St. Louis. Two years later, he was elected vice president of the SIUNA-affiliated Seafarers Entertainment and Allied Trades Union, and in 2000, he was elected to the SIU executive board as vice president of the union’s Lakes and Inland Waters District. He was re-elected in 2004 and again in 2008.
Orzechowski has extensive experience as an organizer and contract negotiator, including sailing aboard organizational-status vessels. He also serves as co-chair to the union's SIU Rivers Pension Trust.
Currently working out of the union’s Algonac, Mich. office, he also serves as an executive board member for the Metropolitan Detroit AFL-CIO, the Michigan State AFL-CIO and the Greater Chicago and Vicinity Port Council of the Maritime Trades Department in addition to serving as vice chair for the Detroit Wayne County Port Authority and chairman of the Detroit Wayne County Port Foundation, which was formed in December 2011. The Foundation's functions include education, community outreach, maritime preservation and environmental stewardship.
Nick Marrone is vice president of the Seafarers International Union’s West Coast Region.
The Long Island, N.Y. native began his SIU career in 1975, when he graduated from the trainee program at what now is named the Paul Hall Center for Maritime Training and Education, located in Piney Point, Md.
He sailed as an AB before coming ashore in 1978 to work as an instructor at the Paul Hall Center. A year later, he became the union’s port agent in Piney Point. Marrone was assigned to the SIU hall in Paducah, Ky. in 1980-81.
During the mid-1980s, Marrone worked in various capacities for U.S.-flag shipping companies, including a stint as district manager for Lykes Bros.
In 1988, he became director of military operations for the Transportation Institute, a Washington, D.C.-based non-profit organization devoted to maritime research, education and promotion.
Marrone rejoined the SIU in 1990 as the director of the union’s legislative and governmental affairs department. From 1992-96, he served as administrator the Seafarers Plans. He then returned to the Paul Hall Center to work as the school’s vice president until 1998, when he was appointed West Coast vice president (a post to which he was elected in 2000 and re-elected in 2004).
Marrone is active in the San Francisco Central Labor Council, the Alameda Central Labor Council, the California State Labor Federation and the Propeller Club of San Francisco. He helped develop the union’s safety school in Honolulu, and he also assisted in some of the behind-the-scenes work that helped lead to construction of the Joseph Sacco Fire Fighting and Safety School in Piney Point (an extension of the Paul Hall Center campus).
Joe Soresi is vice president of the Seafarers International Union’s Atlantic Coast Region.
Following in the footsteps of his father, Tom (an SIU member since 1961), he joined the union in 1990 and shipped out until March 1993, last sailing as an AB aboard the ITB Groton.
Soresi came ashore in 1993 to work for the SIU as a patrolman in the port of Philadelphia and became port agent there in 1996. During those years, he was active in organizing campaigns in Missouri, Illinois and Indiana involving an affiliate of the SIU, the Seafarers Entertainment & Allied Trades Union, and became involved in other areas of the labor movement as well. While in the Philadelphia region, he was vice president and served on the board of the Philadelphia AFL-CIO, and he was elected secretary-treasurer of the Delaware Valley and Vicinity Maritime Port Council of the MTD.
In February 2002, Soresi, who was born and raised in Staten Island, N.Y., was appointed by the SIU’s executive board as vice president of the Atlantic region. In 2004, he was elected as a vice president of the New Jersey State AFL-CIO. Soresi also currently serves in the position of president of the New York Maritime Port Council, vice president of the Hudson County Central Labor Council, and a vice president of the Food and Allied Service Trades.
Kathleen “Kate” Hunt is the National Director of the SIU-affiliated United Industrial Workers (UIW).
Hunt began her maritime career as an AB working on ferries in Cape Cod, Massachusetts, in 1976. In 1980, she became the first female patrolman for the National Maritime Union (NMU), spending many years as an NMU official.
After the SIU/NMU merger in 2001, Hunt was assigned to be a representative for the SIU’s Government Services Division, working with the SIU crews aboard Military Sealift Command vessels, NOAA research vessels and other government-owned ships.
During that time, Hunt also worked as an SIU-affiliated Seafarers Entertainment and Allied Trades Union (SEATU) representative, serving members employed at worksites in the Northeast while she worked out of the union’s New York-area office.
In August 2016, Hunt was appointed by the SIU’s Executive Board to serve as the National Director of the UIW. In this capacity, Hunt oversees dozens of UIW shops in the continental United States and Alaska and in the United States Virgin Islands.