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The BLET’s National General Chairmen’s Association (NGCA) held its annual meeting at BLET National Division Headquarters on March 20. The General Chairmen exchanged important information regarding the upcoming round of national contract negotiations and conducted business regarding several other issues of importance to BLET members.

The General Chairmen began their 2024 annual meeting with a moment of silence for two members of the BLET family whose lives were recently cut short: Texas-Mexican Railway General Chairman Michael Ball, who passed away unexpectedly in late 2023, and National Legislative Office Administrative Assistant Carlos Barrett Sr.

NGCA Chairman Robby Cunningham (BNSF/ATSF) chaired the meeting with assistance from NGCA Secretary-Treasurer Jeff Thurman (BNSF/STL-SF). Brothers Cunningham and Thurman were reelected to continue serving on the NGCA Executive Board, along with Eastern Vice Chairman Pat Driscoll (Conrail) and Southeast Vice Chairman Jerry Sturdivant (NS-Southern Lines). General Chairman James Logan (UP-Southern Region) was elected to serve as Western Vice Chairman.

In preparation for the upcoming round of national negotiations, the NGCA elected three General Chairmen to serve on the National Wage Team: Brother Logan, Brother Sturdivant, and General Chairman Kevin Sexton (Long Island Rail Road). The National Wage Team consists of the National President, two members of the BLET Advisory Board, and three General Chairmen, pursuant to the BLET Bylaws.

Guest speakers included National President Eddie Hall, First Vice President Mark Wallace, and National Secretary-Treasurer David Estes. Assistant to the National President John Fink, gave a presentation regarding national contract negotiations. General Chairmen Jerry Sturdivant (NS-Southern Lines), Scott Bunten (NS-Eastern Lines) and Dewayne Dehart (NS-Northern Lines) gave a presentation regarding the new C3RS pilot program they negotiated with Norfolk Southern. Vice President and National Legislative Representative Vince Verna provided valuable information to the C3RS discussion, as did General Chairman Kevin Sexton (LIRR).

The NGCA meets annually for the purpose of carrying on concerted movements relating to wages, working conditions, education, training, sharing pertinent information, and other important matters of general interest to BLET members.

photo gallery of the meeting can be viewed on the BLET website.