The UAW Executive Board on Tuesday elected Terry Dittes, Region 9 Director, to succeed Norwood Jewell as the Vice President in charge of the union’s Fiat Chrysler Automobiles division. Jewell retired on December 31st, roughly six months before his four-year term was set to end, amidst the FBI’s ongoing investigation into an alleged conspiracy that saw millions of dollars pilfered from the UAW-Chrysler National Training Center.
Jewell himself has not been named or charged in the investigation, but he reportedly received a $2,180 shotgun paid for with training center funds as a birthday present – although the UAW says he later paid for the gun after learning how it was purchased. Terry Dittes will serve what would have been the remainder of Jewell’s term, before standing election to a full four-year term in June.
“It is an honor and privilege to represent the women and men of the UAW as their Vice President,” Dittes said in a statement. “At every bargaining table and every meeting, my focus will always be on the economic fairness, health and safety, and job protections that all UAW members and their families deserve for their hard work and their community’s well-being.”
Dittes started his career in 1978, at the GM Fisher Body Plant in Trenton, New Jersey. He later transferred to GM’s Bensalem, Pennsylvania parts warehouse, becoming a member of UAW Local 2177 and, in 1992, being elected chairperson of the bargaining committee at that charter. After two more terms as shop chair, he was appointed to the Region 9 servicing staff in 1999, before becoming Assistant Director of the UAW Gaming Department in February, 2012; Region 9 Assistant Director in April, 2013; and Region 9 Director in March, 2014.