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William Gerald Fletcher, Jr.

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Information about William Gerald Fletcher, Jr.

Profile image of William Gerald Fletcher, Jr.

Profession

Category:
CivicMakers
Occupation(s):
Nonprofit Chief Executive

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Black, Blue
Favorite Food:
Seafood
Favorite Time of Year:
Summer
Favorite Vacation Spot:
California
Favorite Quote:
Never Forget The Class Struggle.

Birthplace

Born:
6/21/1954
Birth Location:
New York, New York

Profession

Category:
CivicMakers
Occupation(s):
Nonprofit Chief Executive

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Black, Blue
Favorite Food:
Seafood
Favorite Time of Year:
Summer
Favorite Vacation Spot:
California
Favorite Quote:
Never Forget The Class Struggle.

Birthplace

Born:
6/21/1954
Birth Location:
New York
See how William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

William Gerald Fletcher, Jr was born on June 21, 1954 in New York City. His mother was a teacher and his father, a salesman. Motivated by the civil rights movement Fletcher became an activist at age 13, dabbling in the Black Panther Party and organizing rallies and events. While a student at Mount Vernon High School he helped form the Black Student Alliance and was active in student politics. He earned his high school diploma in 1972.

As a young student at Harvard College, Fletcher became interested in the labor movement. Upon earning his B.A. degree in government in 1976, he spent the next three years working as a welder at a Massachusetts shipbuilding company. After receiving hands on experience as a laborer, Fletcher worked as an organizer for the Boston Jobs Coalition, and a paralegal at Greater Boston Legal Services.

In 1986, Fletcher relocated to Washington, D.C. to serve as an organizer for District-65 United Auto Workers. He then went on to become the organizational secretary and administrative director for the National Postal Mail Handlers Union. From 1991 until 1996, Fletcher held a number of positions with the Service Employees International Union including director of education and assistant to the president. In 1996, he joined the AFL-CIO serving as education director and the assistant to President John Sweeney. After leaving the AFL-CIO in 2001, Fletcher joined the George Meany Center for Labor Studies, where he was responsible for developing relationships with foreign labor centers. In 2002, Fletcher accepted the position of president and CEO of TransAfrica Forum, a non-profit organization dedicated to educating the general public on U.S. foreign policy as it affects Africa and the Diaspora in the Caribbean and Latin America.

Fletcher is the author of numerous publications highlighting and chronicling African Americans and the U.S. labor movement. He and his wife, Candice reside in Mitchellville, Maryland and have a teenage daughter.

See how William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. is related to other HistoryMakers
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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of William Gerald Fletcher, Jr.'s interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. lists his favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. talks about his mother, pt. 1
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. talks about his mother, pt. 2
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. talks about his father's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. talks about his father
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. talks about his maternal family heritage
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. recalls his earliest childhood memories
  • Tape: 1 Story: 9 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. talks about his sister
  • Tape: 1 Story: 10 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. describes the neighborhoods where he grew up in New York, New York
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. talks about social dynamics in his childhood neighborhood in New York, New York
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. recalls the sights, sounds and smells of his childhood
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. remembers his fifth grade girlfriend
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. recalls his childhood pastimes
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. talks about his elementary school years
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. recalls his introduction to radical politics
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. talks about supporting, but not joining, the Black Panther Party
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. recalls how his foray into radical politics affected his reputation as a teenager
  • Tape: 2 Story: 9 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. recalls his time at Stuyvesant High School in New York, New York
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. remembers his time at Mount Vernon High School in New York, New York
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. talks about sports he played as a youth
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. recalls his decision to attend Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. talks about how he became interested in workers' rights
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. explains his nickname Qassem and his grandmother's connection to Ewart Guinier
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. recalls working at Fore River shipyard in Quincy, Massachusetts
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. describes meeting and falling in love with his wife
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. recalls how he left welding for community organizing and legal work
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. recalls the death of his first daughter
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. recalls becoming an organizer for the National Postal Mail Handlers Union in Washington, D.C.
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. remembers working for SEIU and AFL-CIO
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. remembers challenges from his time at American Federation of Labor-Congress of Industrial Organizations
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. remembers deciding to apply for a position at TransAfrica Forum
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. describes being offered a job with TransAfrica Forum the same day as his best friend's death
  • Tape: 4 Story: 8 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. describes TransAfrica Forum
  • Tape: 4 Story: 9 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. reflects upon addressing international issues that impact the African American community
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. comments on the United States' involvement in Africa during the George W. Bush presidential administration
  • Tape: 5 Story: 2 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. describes his hopes and concerns for Africa
  • Tape: 5 Story: 3 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. imagines what his fourteen-year-old self would think of his current self
  • Tape: 5 Story: 4 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. reflects upon his life
  • Tape: 5 Story: 5 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. talks about his daughter
  • Tape: 5 Story: 6 - William Gerald Fletcher, Jr. describes how he would like to be remembered