Detroit Free Press: Marick Masters on UAW leadership

UAW leadership is in flux after its president abruptly resigned amid a federal corruption investigation. Gary Jones, 62, resigned Wednesday, the first time in the UAW's 84-year history that a president resigned midterm under such disgraceful circumstances. Under the UAW Constitution, the International Executive Board will select a permanent replacement for Jones, said union spokesman Brian Rothenberg. The selection could open a vice president vacancy that would then need to be filled, he said. On Nov. 2, Jones took a paid leave of absence and UAW Vice President Rory Gamble, 64, who led negotiations with Ford Motor Co., stepped in to serve as acting president. The UAW said Wednesday that the Executive Board had initiated union charges against Jones and Region 5 Director Vance Pearson, 58, to strip their union membership. Wayne State University's Marick Masters said it's conceivable that Region 5 is not the only region involved in corruption. It's now on the UAW to clean its house. Otherwise federal prosecutors could decide the situation warrants government oversight to ascertain if the union rooted out all the corruption. "The government would take over and look at the union's finances and how they conduct their elections and if people have an opportunity to participate in how they elect their leadership," said Masters, a business professor.

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