March 4, 2020
TCU/IAM National President Robert A. Scardelletti announces his retirement on July 31, 2020 after serving 29 years as TCU’s President with over 53 years of membership in the TCU/IAM.
Scardelletti began his rail career as a Yard Clerk with the New York Central Railroad in Cleveland, OH in 1967. He was voted Local Chairman of Local Lodge 725 in 1971 and elected Division Chairman in 1973. In 1975 he gained the attention of the late International President Fred Kroll who named him Grand Lodge Special Assistant. In 1977 he was elected Vice General Chairman of System Board No 86. In 1982 he became Executive Vice General Chairman, then was elected General Chairman in 1984. He was elected International Vice-President at the TCU National Convention in 1987.
Bob Scardelletti was first elected International President of TCU at the 1991 Convention to head the 165,000 member Union. He was the first leader in more than 75 years to successfully challenge an incumbent. Since then he has been returned to office by acclamation vote of delegates to the 1995, 1999, 2004, 2009, 2014, and 2018 Conventions. He is TCU’s longest serving President.
Scardelletti will leave behind a legacy of achievements. Most notably is his participation in the passage of the Railroad Retirement and Survivors Improvement Act of 2001, which liberalized early retirement benefits for 30 year employees and their spouses so that they could retire at age 60 with full benefits. This eliminated a cap on monthly retirement and disability benefits, lowered the minimum service requirement from 10 years to 5 years and revised the financing provisions of the railroad retirement system. Thus stabilizing its financial status for generations to come. It affected a million railroaders, retired and active. Scardelletti describes these improvements to our pension as the greatest accomplishment of our lifetime.
Other notable accomplishments in President Scardelletti’s career include:
- Continually restructuring the union to keep it viable and effective as the Union faces the challenges of the railroad industry.
- Lead the way for TCU to merge with the IAM. This crucial move preserved TCU’s ability to represent its members for many years to come.
- During his tenure, the Union consistently received ratification votes of its contracts by the membership in the high 80 and 90 percentiles.
The TCU/IAM Executive Council has proudly bestowed the honorary title of President Emeritus upon Scardelletti.
President Scardelletti has also held other prominent positions in the labor movement:
- International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAMAW) Executive Council Member
- AFL/CIO Executive Council Member
- International Transportation Federation (ITF) Executive Board Member
- Cooperating Railway Labor Organizations (CRLO) Chairman
National Vice President Arthur Maratea, TCU’s National President-elect, stated “Bob Scardelletti is a legend in rail labor. He was a man for our times. His accomplishments are nothing short of extraordinary. While he will be missed, the TCU and its membership wishes him and his wife Diana many years and happiness and health in their retirement years.”
National President Scardelletti: “It has been my honor to have devoted my entire working career to this Union and the members thereof. The Union-the only institution dedicated exclusively to protect and enhance the wages, working conditions, health and welfare, and pension of its members from the first day on the job to the last day of their life. It has been my honor, indeed.”
Artie Maratea Elected TCU/IAM National President
Arthur Maratea has been elected TCU/IAM National President effective August 1, 2020 by its Executive Council to fill the interim vacancy created by the retirement of its current President.
President-elect Maratea began his railroad career as a Carman on the Long Island Railroad in 1988 and was promoted to a Telegraphers position in 1989. He then joined Local 1444 and was elected President of the Local in 1991. In 1994, he was elected Local Chairman until 2002 where upon he was elected General Chairman of Long Island System Board No 167.
In 2011 President-elect Maratea was elected by the TCU/IAM Executive Council as National Vice President. He was re-elected at the 2014 and 2018 TCU/IAM National Conventions.
On January 1, 2017 TCU/IAM National President Robert A. Scardelletti appointed him as Special Assistant to the President and assigned him to head TCU’s Industry Relations and Social Services Departments.
President-elect Maratea has extensive experience in contract negotiations throughout the Union and has been a prominent figure in coordinated bargaining with various other rail labor unions.
President-elect Maratea “I am deeply honored to have been elected TCU’s National President. I will give all that I have, fighting every day to improve the working conditions and better the lives of every member. While the challenges of today are immense, our members are diligent, our Union is strong and we will continue to deliver rock solid contracts for our membership. I look forward to serving our Union and its membership in the years to come.”
Transportation Communications Union (TCU/IAM) represents approximately 46,000 members who work in every state in the U.S., mostly employed in the railroad industry. In 2012, TCU merged with the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM), who represent 600,000 active and retired members in North America.