International Union of Operating Engineers

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International Union of Operating Engineers (IUOE)
IUOE logo.png
FoundedDecember 7, 1896
HeadquartersWashington, D.C.
Key people
James T. Callahan, General President
AffiliationsAFL–CIO, CLC, NAMTU

The International Union of Operating Engineers (IUOE) is a trade union within the United States-based AFL–CIO representing primarily construction workers who work as heavy equipment operators, mechanics, surveyors, and stationary engineers (also called operating engineers or power engineers) who maintain heating and other systems in buildings and industrial complexes, in the United States and Canada.

Founded in 1896, it currently represents roughly 400,000 workers in approximately 170 local unions and operates nearly 100 apprenticeship programs.


The forerunner to the IUOE was the National Union of Steam Engineers of America established in Chicago in 1896. One year later, the organization began to admit Canadian members and changed its name to the International Union of Steam Engineers. By 1912, the organization changed its name again to the International Union of Steam and Operating Engineers. Finally, it dropped the word "steam" in 1928 as both the technology and the scope of labor had moved beyond steam technology.[2]

Training facilities[edit]

IUOE locals and the IUOE national organization run training facilities throughout the country. The largest training facility, the International Training & Education Center (ITEC), is located in Crosby, Texas, and covers 265 acres. It was opened in July 2016.[3]

The purpose of the ITEC is to provide hands-on training and education for union members in North America on new technologies and methodologies in construction such as excavation, drones, earthmoving, crane operation, mechanics, welding, and OSHA guidelines.[4]

Technology and equipment providers such as Tadano America, Link-Belt Cranes, Terex Cranes, Manitowoc Cranes, Liebherr, Morrow Equipment,[5] and Built Robotics[6] donate, fund, or partner with the Union in providing access to different types of technology. These include cranes, virtual simulators, drones, autonomous equipment, welding bays, and heavy equipment. Additional industry partners include Lincoln Electric, Genie, DeWalt, Proto, Mac Tools, Lenox, John Deere, Caterpillar, Komatsu, and Simformotion.[7]


On April 10, 2019, President Trump visited the IUOE Training and Education Center and issued two executive orders to change the process for how pipeline projects were approved, which aimed to simplify the process for oil and gas companies in the United States.[8]

Local 3[edit]

IUOE Local 3, based in Alameda, California, is the largest building and construction trades local in the U.S., with jurisdiction covering four states: California, Nevada, Hawaii and Utah. Most of Local 3's 42,600 members work as heavy equipment operators, and construction workers, but the local also represents public employees, such as maintenance workers and peace officers, Technical Engineers, Surveyors and Construction Inspectors as well as Building Inspectors. Local 3 is headed by Business Manager Dan Reding.[9]

Local 94 headquarters, New York

Local 4[edit]

IUOE Local 4, based in Medway, Massachusetts, has over 5,000 members in central and eastern Massachusetts (including Boston, Massachusetts), eastern New Hampshire, and Maine.[10]

Local 14-14B[edit]

IUOE Local 14-14B, based in Flushing, New York, represents approximately 1,600 members working in the five boroughs of New York City.[11]

Local 49[edit]

IUOE Local 49, based in Minneapolis, Minnesota, is the largest construction union in Minnesota and represents over 14,000 members with jurisdiction over Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota. Local 49's Business Manager is Jason George. The Local 49 Training Center located in Hinckley, Minnesota offers a comprehensive apprenticeship and educational program.

Local 77[edit]

IUOE Local 77 covers Washington, D.C., seven counties in Northern Virginia and four counties in Maryland surrounding the District of Columbia.

Local 98[edit]

IUOE Local 98, based in East Longmeadow, Massachusetts, represents approximately 1,300 members in Western Massachusetts, Western New Hampshire, and Vermont.[12]

Local 115 – British Columbia[edit]

Over 11,000 members: dam builders, crane and heavy equipment operators, road builders, aerial firefighters and mechanics.[13]

Local 137[edit]

Local 137 represents the Operating Engineers in the counties of Westchester, Putnam and parts of Southern Dutchess. The branch is headquartered in Briarcliff Manor, New York,[14] in a former dairy processing building for Briarcliff Farms.[15]

Members of this branch are currently working on the largest infrastructure project in New York and one of the largest in the nation, the New Tappan Zee Bridge.[16]

Local 139[edit]

Local 139, based in Pewaukee, Wisconsin, represents over 9,500 members in Wisconsin. They represent workers employed across over 2,400 contractors.

Local 115[edit]

Local 115, based in Burnaby, British Columbia Canada, represents over 12,000 skilled workers in construction, road building, transportation, mining, aviation and various industrial sectors throughout British Columbia and the Yukon. Local 115's Business Manager is Brian Cochrane and its President is Wayne Mills. Local 115 runs a Training Institute that is accredited with Private Career Training Institutions and delivers programs in accordance with British Columbia’s Industry Training Authority.

Temporary Foreign Worker legal challenge[edit]

In 2013, IUOE Local 115, along with the BC Building Trades Union, had tried to overturn permits given to a Murray River coal mine near Tumbler Ridge, British Columbia to hire 201 Chinese temporary workers to work on a new mine owned by Chinese nationals. The unions claimed that the job ads were written to exclude Canadian workers, and instead chose to hire Chinese workers for lower wages rather than source or train local miners from the immediate area or the province.

However, a federal court judge disagreed. Russell Zinn found that HD Mining, the owner of the coal mine, had fulfilled the requirements set out in a federally mandated Labour Market Opinion (LMO) and dismissed the unions’ challenge. However, public and media attention on the case resulted in some changes being implemented into the Canadian Temporary Foreign Worker Program to ensure that foreign workers are not chosen over local resources, where available.[17]

Local 150[edit]

Local 150, based in Countryside, Illinois, is the second-largest local in the International (23,000 + Members) with jurisdiction in parts of three states: Illinois, Indiana and Iowa. Local 150's President and Business Manager is James "Jim" Sweeney. Local 150 represents the most traditional Operating Engineers (Hoisting and Portable, Heavy-Highway, Building Trade, Quarry, Landfill, and Underground) employees in the International. Local 150 has an advanced Operating Engineers (Hoisting and Portable) apprenticeship program.[18]

Local 501 – Southern California / Southern Nevada[edit]

Local 501 was formed in 1953 by the merger of several regional locals and has offices in Los Angeles and Las Vegas. The Business Manager is Edward J. Curly. Members perform maintenance and repair of all HVAC equipment, boiler operation, lighting, plumbing, welding, painting, carpentry, or in general, all trade related maintenance and repair.[19]

Local 825[edit]

Local 825 covers New Jersey and the 'lower counties' (Rockland, Orange, Ulster, Sullivan & Delaware) of New York State. The Local 825 Business Manager is Greg Lalevee. The Local 825 training center is located adjacent to the NJ Turnpike.[20]

Notable members[edit]


  1. ^ US Department of Labor, Office of Labor-Management Standards. File number 000-159. (Search)
  2. ^ Quinnell, Kenneth (September 9, 2019). "Get to Know AFL–CIO's Affiliates: Operating Engineers". AFL–CIO Blog. AFL–CIO. Retrieved 11 June 2020.
  3. ^ "YouTube". YouTube. Retrieved 2020-06-18.
  4. ^ "International Training Registration System". IUOE. Retrieved 11 June 2020.
  5. ^ Sundermeyer, Hannah (January 10, 2019). "IUOE's one stop shop for training". American Cranes & Transport. KHL Group Americas LLC. Retrieved 11 June 2020.
  6. ^ Simonite, Tom (March 10, 2020). "Construction Workers Embrace the Robots That Do Their Jobs". Wired. Condé Nast. Retrieved 11 June 2020.
  7. ^ "YouTube". YouTube. Retrieved 2020-06-18.
  8. ^ "Trump Signs Executive Orders In Push To Make It Easier To Build Oil And Gas Pipelines". National Public Radio. 2019-04-11. Archived from the original on 2020-06-10. Retrieved 2020-06-18.
  9. ^ "Business Manager Dan Reding" (PDF). Retrieved 4 August 2019.
  10. ^ "International Union of Operating Engineers Local 4". Retrieved 19 April 2018.
  11. ^ "IUOE Local 14-14B's Home Page". Retrieved 19 April 2018.
  12. ^ "Home". IUOE Local 98. Retrieved 19 April 2018.
  13. ^ "Our History".
  14. ^[bare URL PDF]
  15. ^ Pattison, Robert (1939). A History of Briarcliff Manor. William Rayburn. p. 17. OCLC 39333547.
  16. ^ "International Union of Operating Engineers". Retrieved 19 April 2018.
  17. ^ "(no title)". Canoe. Retrieved 19 April 2018. {{cite web}}: Cite uses generic title (help)
  18. ^ "ASIP: Local 150". Retrieved 19 April 2018.
  19. ^ "About Us". IUOE LOCAL 501 - International Union of Operating Engineers. Retrieved 2019-03-17.
  20. ^ "IUOE Local 825 – International Union of Operating Engineers Local 825". Retrieved 19 April 2018.

External links[edit]