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D. Taylor Leaves as President of Unite Here, Nevada Still Priority

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Posted on: April 2, 2024, 07:45h. 

Last updated on: April 2, 2024, 07:45h.

Donald “D.” Taylor, who once was a key leader of the Las Vegas-based Culinary Union, has stepped down as head of the powerful workers’ group, Unite Here.

Donald “D.” Taylor
Donald “D.” Taylor, pictured above. He stepped down as Unite Here’s president. But he will continue to work on Nevada labor activities. (Image: Unite Here)

He will stay on as chair of Unite Here Health, the national umbrella labor organization announced on Monday, and will continue to work on Nevada union activity.

To Focus on Hospitality Sector

“I believe the next generation of leaders should get their shot,” Taylor, 67, told the Nevada Independent news outlet on Monday when asked about his decision.

I’m not retiring and I’m not going to stop working,” Taylor added. “I think I can be helpful with gaming and other locations, based on my relationships here in Nevada.”

He predicted the Culinary Union could soon see an additional 10K to 15K members, if more hospitality workers choose to affiliate with the union.

Taylor first joined Unite Here in the 1970s while a student at Georgetown University when he was working at a restaurant.

In the early 1980s, Taylor’s union career started. He worked in Reno and Tahoe, Nev. for the Culinary Union. A few years later, he was a key leader of the 1984 strike in Las Vegas.

In 2002, he was chosen to become secretary-treasurer of the Culinary Union. During his watch, union membership skyrocketed from 17K to 55K and the union grew in statewide, and even national, power and influence. Unite Here picked Taylor in 2012 as its president.

Praises for Taylor

Word of the change in leadership at Unite Here led to compliments for Taylor.

“His 40-year legacy of advocating and winning for working families made our union the militant organizing and political powerhouse that it is today,” Culinary Union Secretary-Treasurer Ted Pappageorge said in response to Taylor’s decision to step down.

D. has been a steadfast champion of worker and immigrant rights, health care reform, and has personally spearheaded innovative language at the bargaining table,” Papageorge added in a Monday statement.

Culinary Workers Union Local 226 and Bartenders Union Local 165 represent 60K workers in Nevada. Many members work at casino resorts on the Las Vegas Strip and in Downtown Las Vegas.

Members are employed in such jobs as bartenders, bellmen, cocktail and food servers, cooks, guest room attendants, laundry and kitchen workers, and porters.

Unite Here currently has some 300K members nationwide. They are employed in such workplaces as casinos, hotels, and food service organizations.

The 89-year-old Culinary Union and many other unions are affiliated with Unite Here.

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