As a new generation rises up for Black life and the movement extends into the workplace, Ed Wells’ story of struggle and hard-earned wisdom needs to be heard. Ed Wells is a movement elder with fifty years of service as a rank & file labor leader and Black liberation activist.
Born in Youngstown Ohio to a steel worker family, he came of age amid the last great Black rising in the United States and he started his journey towards union militancy at age 18. From his leadership on the shop floor of a large warehouse, to the fight against the devastating plant closings of the 1970s and 1980s, to wide influence as a proponent of rank & file organizing and as educator with the Teamsters National Black Caucus, Ed Wells has a lifetime of extraordinary stories that need to be heard.
The interview will be conducted by Daniel Gross who has benefited from almost twenty years of mentorship from Ed Wells. Daniel is the founder and executive director of Brandworkers, an organization of specialty food manufacturing workers building an industry-wide union with the Industrial Workers of the World. Previously, Daniel co-founded the IWW Starbucks Workers. He is the co-author with Staughton Lynd of Labor Law for the Rank & Filer: Building Solidarity While Staying Clear of the Law.