Russ Burns retires as head of Operating Engineers Local 3

July 1, 2019

CONTACT: Mandy McMillen
Operating Engineers Local 3
(916) 993-2047, ext. 2505

ALAMEDA, CA – Following a distinguished 40-year career as a member of Operating Engineers Local 3, the largest construction trades local in the nation, and spending the last 13 as the union’s business manager, Russell E. Burns retired at the end of June. He served five terms as the union leader, making him one of the longest running business managers of the 80-year-old trades union.

“It’d be hard to find a better example of a labor leader than Russ Burns,” said Speaker of the California State Assembly Anthony Rendon. “He embodies what labor unions do, because he fought for his members, but his efforts were for the benefit of every working person. His advocacy for safe working conditions, fair wages and needed infrastructure legislation all wound up helping everyone, not just unionists.”

Read entire press release …

Russ Burns addressing the membership

Nevada Apprenticeship Program Benefits from political efforts

Apprenticeship Program gains from political efforts in Nevada

In Nevada, a new emphasis on our Apprenticeship Program has been injected into state government like never before, thanks to our Voice of the Engineer (VOTE) volunteers and the politicians they helped elect last year. For example, in his first State of the Union address, Gov. Steve Sisolak noted the importance of apprenticeship programs and announced plans to increase funding for skilled-trade programs, like ours, with the goal of training an additional 2,000 students.

One of the first things the new, labor-friendly members of the State Legislature did (in addition to hosting the first-ever Apprenticeship Day at the state capitol) was introduce Senate Bill (SB) 207, that the Governor subsequently signed and put it into law on June 8. The bill requires contractors and subcontractors on public works projects to employ our apprentices for a certain percentage of hours, and ensures those who graduate while on one of these projects be paid journey-level wages while still helping the employer meet the apprentice requirement. This guarantees the continued growth of our Apprenticeship Program, with the increased market share that goes with it, and even better career prospects for our current and future apprentices.


From left: Business Agent Phil Herring, District Representative Scott Fullerton, Governor Steve Sisolak, Nevada Apprentice Danielle Leggett, Nevada Joint Apprenticeship Committee (JAC) Administrator Brian Prather

Job Training Leads to Homeownership

Local woman finds career and independence in the trades
Read press release now!
OAKDALE – With the housing prices soaring in California and minimum wage jobs rarely affording people the chance to purchase homes, Kristyn Pair’s story is not that unique. After graduating high school, she couldn’t afford to pay for schooling, but she also didn’t qualify for financial aid, so she found herself working four jobs at one time and sleeping on friends’ couches just to make ends meet. When she landed a job making just over minimum wage as a bank teller, she still struggled. (Read press release now . . . )


2019 Academic Scholarship Awards announced

Congratulations to the 2019 Academic Scholarship winners! The top prize this year was again a whopping $15,000 scholarship.

Download the complete list now.

The winners in each category are shown below.

FIRST PLACE: $15,000
Tom J. Stapleton Memorial Scholarships

Winners receive $6,000 for the first year and an additional $3,000 per year stipend for the second, third, and fourth years of college, provided they remain full-time students.

Jean Paula Pagaduan
Oakdale, CA
District 30
Parent: Jose Pagaduan

Salvador Avila Sanchez
Oakland, CA
District 20
Parent: Sal Avila

Second Place: $12,500

Winners receive $5,000 for the first year and an additional $2,500 per year stipend for the second, third, and fourth years of college, provided they remain full-time students.

Lucy Henneker
Castro Valley, CA
District 20
Parent: Thomas Henneker

Jack Ponza
Scotts Valley, CA
District 90
Parent: Geno Ponza

Third Place: $10,000

Winners receive $4,000 for the first year and an additional $2,000 per year stipend for the second, third, and fourth years of college, provided they remain full-time students.

Jocelyn Franklin
San Jose, CA
District 90
Parent: Daniel Franklin

Tyler Marshall
Saratoga Springs, UT
District 12
Parent: Jonathan Marshall


Local 3 and the Building and Construction Trades Council: May Day Rally

Local 3 and the Building and Construction Trades Council of Alameda County mobilized hundreds of union workers and supporters as they marched through the streets of Oakland to a rally at Frank Ogawa Plaza on Wednesday, May 1 in observance of International Workers’ Day, commonly known as May Day. The march was organized in protest of the City of Oakland refusing to implement a Project Labor Agreement (PLA) and allowing contractors to bring in out-of-area workers on city projects. The march and rally were covered by local news outlets, including KPIX and KTVU.

Don’t miss the 48th annual Redding BBQ

Don’t miss the 48th annual Redding BBQ

Download the flyer now.

When : Sunday, June 30, 2019 11:00am – 2:00pm

Where: Anderson River Park, Redding

Tickets for sale at Redding District Office

Pre-Sale Ticket Purchases are Strongly Suggested

  • Actives: $ 12.00 Per Person
  • Retiree: $8.00 (Retiree and Spouse only)
  • Child 6 -12 yrs old: $6.00
  • Children under 5 yrs & under – Free

Please call (530) 222-6093 if you have any questions


Nevada governor backs labor

From left: Local 3 lobbyist Gail Tuzzolo, Treasurer Dave Harrison, President Dan Reding, Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak, Vice President Steve Ingersoll, Nevada District Rep. Scott Fullerton and Lobbyist Danny Thompson recently met to discuss an important Carson City apprenticeship bill that will benefit Operating Engineers.

Sisolak, who Local 3 strongly endorsed in last November’s election, is pro-Labor and has been willing to work with us on our issues from Day One. This is just another example of the importance politics plays in our livelihoods.


Press Release: Carr/Camp Fire Victims Receive Boots and Clothing


Contact: Mandy McMillen, (916) 993-2047, ext. 2505 Operating Engineers Local 3,

Ariat and local union coordinate community assistance

REDDING – Travis Clements may not have lost his home in the Carr Fire, but he lost everything else on his 2-acre property. The fire blazed 40 feet from his home last year and destroyed his aunt’s home on Iron Mountain Road.

So when the Operating Engineers Local 3 Union Hall called him up to say they had partnered with Ariat to offer him and others in his community some clothing and boots, it brightened his day. Clements has worked as a member of of the construction union since 2001, maintaining steady employment for most of his career with Tullis, Inc. (Read full  press release . . . )


2019 Scholarship Applications must be postmarked by March 31

Less than five days remain. Applications must be postmarked no later than March 31, 2019. Online applications can be found below. Applicants are encouraged to fill out the applications online and print them for signature and submission.

Note: Academic Scholarship applicants who do not win are automatically entered into the Merit Scholarship raffle drawing (at the July Executive Board Meeting). Please do not submit multiple applications.

Get the applications below or visit the Scholarship Page for all of the details!

Remember, applications must be postmarked no later than March 31, 2019 in order to be considered.