Fernando Gapasin

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Fernando Gapasin

Fernando Gapasin is a member of Freedom Road Socialist Organization.[1]

Dr. Fernando Gapasin is a former professor of Industrial Relations and Chicano/a Studies. He is a 50-year veteran of the U.S. Labor movement. He is currently a Field Representative for OSEA/AFT Local 6732 and the Oregon State Chair for the National Writers Union/United Auto Workers local 1981. He is also on the Executive Committee of Portland Jobs with Justice.[2]

He is President of the Central Oregon Labor Council and General Board Member of the Oregon State Federation of Labor. He currently teaches at the University of Oregon. He was the principal researcher of the AFL-CIO’s Union Cities program and former faculty at the National Labor College (Labor Studies), Penn State (Industrial Relations), and UCLA (Chicana/o Studies).


Gapasin describes himself as a local labor movement activist, author and labor educator. He co-authored Solidarity Divided with his friend Bill Fletcher, Jr.,

The Gapasins were farm workers and neither parent finished elementary school. His family members were founders of early agricultural unions in California and became founding members of the United Farm Workers Union.

I was a farm worker and an organizer for the UFW. My uncle Philip Veracruz, former vice-president of the UFW, instilled in me ideas about solidarity and socialism. And, as a child he warned me that capitalists would scapegoat immigrants for the economic hardships caused by capitalism.

Despite spending over a decade in academia I have been a worker all of my life. I’ve been a retail clerk, dishwasher, auto worker, steel worker, fiber glass worker, roller coaster assembler, heavy equipment mechanic, bus mechanic as well as a university professor. While in academia I was a recruiter and executive board member of AFT and I was the president of an AFSCME local that represented childcare workers. In the local union movement I have served in every capacity from shop steward to principal officer of two local unions and two Central Labor Councils. I’ve also been a paid union organizer and staffer and the principal researcher for the AFL-CIO’s Union Cities program in 1996 -1997. I have been a staffer or elected leader in a dozen different unions. In all of my various positions on the shop floor or in the unions I have perceived myself as a dissident. I am also a Chicana/o movement activist.[3]

Freedom Road


In 1991 Fernando Gapasin was a member of Freedom Road Socialist Organization.

Forward Motion

In 1995, Fernando Gapasin, an assistant professor of labor relations Penn State University contributed an article to Freedom Road Socialist Organization's February Forward Motion "Remembering my uncle..Philip Vera Cruz". .[4]

"Black Workers, Hanging Nooses"

July 19 2008 Modern Times Bookstore 888 Valencia St., at 20th St., SF "Black Workers, Hanging Nooses & The State of The Labor Movement"

Panel discussion with Leo Robinson, Carl Bryant, Fernando Gapasin, Jack Heyman and others.

Labor Campaign for Single Payer

In 2009 Fernando Gapasin, President West Central Oregon CLC served on the National Advisory Board and the Steering Committee of Labor Campaign for Single Payer.

Center for Labor Renewal

In 2009 Fernando Gapasin was listed as an endorser of the Center for Labor Renewal[5].

Solidarity Divided

The book "Solidarity Divided: The Crisis in Organized Labor and a New Path Toward Social Justice" (University of California Press, 2008), was co-authored by Bill Fletcher, Jr. and Fernando Gapasin. The authors, were a longtime union organizer and quondam top assistant to the AFL-CIO’s John Sweeney, and a Central Labor Council president and labor educator.[6]

Left Forum 2011

Solidarity Divided: New Models of Labor/Community Organization

Portland JwJ Executive Board

Portland Jobs with Justice Executive Board of 2015;[7]

Thanked by Zweig

"The Working Class Majority: America's Best Kept Secret, Second Edition By Michael Zweig acknowledged Joe Berry, Ron Blackwell, Jim Borbely, Ross Borden, Gene Bruskin, Jeff Crosby, Fernando Gapasin, Penny Lewis, Stephanie Luce, Maria Maisto, Jack Metzgar, Rachel Micah-Jones, Dennis O'Neil, Jay D. Mazur, Steven Pitts, Warren Sanderson, Heidi Shierholz, Craig Smith, Megan Smith, Ralph Trioche, Luis Valenzuela, Victor Wallis, Kris Warner, Devon Whitham, Anne Weigard, and Robert Saute for their help.