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Cindy Estrada was elected a UAW vice president on June 16, 2010, by delegates at the union’s 35th Constitutional Convention in Detroit.
Estrada, a longtime union organizer and social activist, is the first Latina elected to serve as a UAW vice president.
A member of UAW Local 174 in Romulus, Mich., since 1995, Estrada previously served as director of the union’s National Organizing Department. Appointed in 2008 by then-UAW President Ron Gettelfinger, her responsibilities included directing the union’s organizing staff in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico. She joined the UAW international staff in 2000 when she was appointed by then-UAW President Stephen P. Yokich.
Estrada developed a passion for the labor movement while growing up listening to stories from her grandparents and other relatives recounting working in the fields as farm workers and as factory workers.
In 1993 she earned a degree in education from the University of Michigan, and then worked with the United Farm Workers of America.
In 1995 Bob King, then-director of UAW Region 1A, assigned Estrada to assist with the Mexican Industries organizing drive in southwest Detroit. In 1999 Estrada led organizers in bringing about one of the largest victories in manufacturing of Spanish-speaking workers for the UAW.
She has worked with the AFL-CIO training new organizers and on several high-profile organizing campaigns; worked to coordinate the Michigan Organizing Center in Lansing, Mich., and helped UAW regional directors establish programs in organizing, recruitment, training, planning and campaigning.
Before becoming director of National Organizing, then-UAW Vice President Terry Thurman named Estrada the department’s top administrative assistant. She played a key role in developing and implementing innovative strategies to assist UAW organizing efforts.
Her responsibilities included directing the organizing staff in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico, and for giving quarterly reports to the UAW International Executive Board.
Estrada, a lifelong Democrat, is an active member of the Coalition of Labor Union Women (CLUW) and the Labor Council for Latin American Advancement (LCLAA). She is involved in numerous charitable organizations.
Estrada resides in Whitmore Lake, Mich., with her husband, Frank White, and their children, Jason and Jesse. She is stepmom to Tracy, Jodi, Tara and Taylor, and the grandmother of Alexis, Bradon, Delaney, Cadance and Carter.