Friday, July 07, 2006

UAW boss to join DCX supervisory board

Tuesday, July 04, 2006
UAW boss to join DCX supervisory board
Detroit News wire services

FRANKFURT, Germany -- Ron Gettelfinger, the president of the United Auto Workers, is set to join DaimlerChrysler AG's supervisory board later this month.

The German-American automaker on Monday didn't specify what day Gettelfinger would join the board. He is replacing Nate Gooden, who is stepping down.

Gettelfinger, 61, who joined the main North American auto workers union in 1964, was re-elected last month to a second four-year term as its president.

The time ahead promises to be one of the most turbulent in union history, including continued job cuts that will exacerbate the UAW's membership decline and crucial contract talks with the U.S. automakers next year.

Gettelfinger said in an interview that "it's my intention to go on the supervisory board." Not all procedures necessary for the change have been completed, and "we're in the process of following up."

In Germany, supervisory boards represent shareholders and are responsible for appointing top managers and endorsing strategic decisions.

DaimlerChrysler's 20-member board includes 10 workers' representatives, fulfilling German law. IG Metall, Germany's second-biggest labor union, offered one of those board seats to the Detroit-based UAW after Daimler-Benz AG acquired Chrysler Corp. in 1998.

Gooden joined the board in 2002, after being elected a union vice president. Gettelfinger, elected president the same year, appointed Gooden to head the union's DaimlerChrysler department. Before Gooden, the union's seat had been held by UAW President Stephen Yokich, who retired in 2002.

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