Terence O'Sullivan

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Terence M. O’Sullivan

Terence O'Sullivan (born June 29, 1955) has served as President of the Laborers International Union of North America since Jan. 1, 2000.


O'Sullivan is a member of the Governing Board of Presidents of the Building and Construction Trades Department of the AFL-CIO. He guided the more than 500,000 collective bargaining members of LIUNA to the forefront of the labor movement, reshaping the Union into one of the fastest-growing, most aggressive and progressive unions in North America. Despite the decline in overall union membership in the U.S., LIUNA has shown steady and consistent growth.[1]


O'Sullivan joined LiUNA in 1974, becoming the General President of LIUNA on Jan. 1, 2000.[2] Before taking on the position of president, he as a Vice President, Mid-Atlantic Regional Manager, and Assistant to the General President.[3]

Sinn Fein

O’Sullivan is a long-time, vocal supporter and activist for Sinn Fein to secure peace, justice and a united Ireland. He is Executive Vice President of D.C. Friends of Ireland and President of New York Friends of Ireland.[4]

"United Ireland Forum"

There was a loud buzz of anticipation in the hall as 800 Irish American activists gathered on a Saturday afternoon June 2009 in the Hilton Hotel in Midtown Manhattan, in New York.

Old friends who had campaigned together over many decades on a range of justice issues, from internment, through political status campaigns, the hunger strikes, collusion, plastic bullets and the MacBride Principles Campaign against discrimination, and many more, came together for a special one day conference organized by Sinn Féin.

There were scores of Irish American organisations represented at what was probably the biggest single gathering of Irish American organisations and activists in several decades.

The New York event was organized by Sinn Féin. It was billed as a ‘United Ireland Forum’ with the theme of the conference described as; ‘A Public Conversation to discuss: Unity – Our destination: How do we get there?’

Pete Hamill was Fear an Tí. This well known former New York journalist, essayist and novelist spoke of the importance of the conference and of the issue and introduced each of the panellists.

He was joined on stage by Gerry Adams, Sinn Féin President; Brian Keenan, author and broadcaster who was a hostage in Beirut for four and a half years and who is from East Belfast; Dr. Brendan O’Leary, is Professor of Political Science at the University of Pennsylvania who has written extensively on the north, is an advisor to the Kurdistan National Assembly, the UN, EU and others; and Terry O’Sullivan, the General President of the Labourers’ International Union of North America.

Gerry Adams as the host of the Forum reminded his audience of the goal of the meeting, “A Public Conversation to discuss: Unity – Our destination: How do we get there?”. He identified two sub themes: “Firstly for the people of Ireland – what kind of united Ireland do we need? “And secondly for the diaspora, particularly here in the USA, the question is not so much how do we get there as how can the USA help the people of Ireland get there? How do you help? How can you be active and effective?

“Because it isn’t a matter of IF we will get a united Ireland – be sure of that my friends. It is a matter of HOW and WHEN. “For Sinn Féin a united Ireland is more than just about changing the flags. We want a real republic – a national democratic republic – but that is for the people of the island of Ireland to decide, free from outside interference. So, this conference is about what you can do about uniting Ireland. In other words this is the start of a new phase of activism throughout Irish America. “For hundreds of years we Irish have struggled for independence and freedom from Britain. Our struggle has taken many forms, sometimes armed and violent, sometimes electoral, sometimes peaceful.

“We have fought on all fronts – we have suffered. Others have suffered also. We have persisted; we have made enormous progress and we have prevailed. And always, at the heart of our struggle there has been our fundamental right, our basic human right, to determine our own future.

The conference was also unexpectedly addressed by two senior New York politicians US Senator Charles Schumer and Congressman Eliot Engel who both pledged their support to the campaign.[5]

Change to Win

O'Sullivan is on the Leadership Council of the Change to Win labor union federation.[6]


O’Sullivan is a current member of the Board of Directors of Ullico Inc. He also previously served as chairman and CEO of the union-focused insurance and financial services provider.[7]

America’s Agenda: Health Care for All

O'Sullivan serves on the Board of Directors of America’s Agenda: Health Care for All.[8]

Americans for Transportation Mobility

O'Sullivan is a member of the Management Committee of Americans for Transportation Mobility.[9]

West Virginia Laborers' Training Center

O'Sullivan has served as the Administrator of the West Virginia Laborers' Training Center.[10]

La Fuente

O'Sullivan is a Board Member ex officio of La Fuente, an organization working to organize labor and community partners around immigrant and worker rights issues.[11]

Apollo Alliance

In 2006, Terence O'Sullivan, served on the National Advisory Board of the Apollo Alliance.[12]

Netroots Nation

At the 2011 Netroots Nation conference the LIUNA sponsored a Fight Back for Good Jobs rally featuring LIUNA President Terry O’Sullivan, Van Jones, Sen. Ben Cardin, Rep. Keith Ellison, Rep. Tim Walz, Minneapolis Mayor R. T. Rybak, St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman and other political, business and community leaders.[13]

Fred Ross award campaign

In early 2013, mainly Democratic Socialists of America aligned activists, together with many elected officials across the United States came together to urge President Barack Obama to award posthumously the Presidential Medal of Freedom to the legendary organizer, Fred Ross, Sr.. The Saul Alinsky trained radical was the first to organize people through house meetings, a mentor to both Cesar Chavez and DSAer Dolores Huerta, and a pioneer in Latino voter outreach since 1949 when he helped elect Communist Party USA affiliate Ed Roybal as Los Angeles’s first Latino council member, "Ross’ influence on social change movements remains strong two decades after his death in 1992".

Endorsers of the proposal included Terry O'Sullivan.[14]

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