Tess Ewing

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Tess Ewing is a Massachusetts activist. She lives in Cambridge , with her partner of 28 years, Louise Rice. Together, they raised 2 sons: Jethro Rice and Dan Rice.[1]


Tess Ewing has been a labor activist since the mid 1970's, when she was one of the organizers of the Boston School Bus Drivers Union, USWA Local 8751. The experience of bringing in the union – which took three separate strikes and two weeks in jail – and of seeing first hand how much an organized workforce can accomplish, inspired her to make the labor movement her career. For 13 years, Ewing drove a school bus and served in various capacities for the union, including 2 terms as local president. After that, she took a job as Business Agent for the laundry workers union, LDCIU Local 66.[2]

National Fight Back Conference

Tess Ewing was a Massachusetts delegate to the October League's December 1975 "National Fight Back Conference" in Chicago.

Training work

While working with unions, Ewing also got involved in doing training and education for union members. She became active in WILD, the Women's Institute for Leadership Development. WILD was an organization whose mission is to give working women, and especially women of color, the skills to become activists and leaders in their unions. . When UMass started the Labor Extension Program in 1995, Ewing applied for and got the position of Coordinator on the Boston campus.

Ewing is Treasurer of the United Association for Labor Education (UALE) the professional association of labor educators. She is also Treasurer of the Gay and Lesbian Labor Activist Network, and a member of the Board of WILD.[3]

Massachusetts May Day

In May 1995 the Communist Party USA newspaper Peoples Weekly World published a May Day supplement. Included was a page offering May Day greetings to Massachusetts Communists Lew Johnson, Laura Ross, and Ann Timpson. Endorsers of the greeting included Tess Ewing.[4]

Anne Burlak Timpson Labor Forum

The Anne Burlak Timpson Labor Forum is a creation of the Massachusetts Communist Party USA. It was established in honor of party member Anne Burlak Timpson, who died in 2002.

Founding Committee members were;[5]

Open letter to Andy Stern

On May 1 2008, Tess Ewing, of the University of Massachusetts and the Boston Labor Center signed an open letter to SEIU president Andy Stern in protest at SEIU move to force its local United Healthcare Workers into trusteeship.

We are writing to express our deep concern about SEIU's threatened trusteeship over its third largest local, United Healthcare Workers (UHW). We believe that there must always be room within organized labor for legitimate and principled dissent, if our movement is to survive and grow.
Putting UHW under trusteeship would send a very troubling message and be viewed, by many, as a sign that internal democracy is not valued or tolerated within SEIU. In our view, this would have negative consequences for the workers directly affected, the SEIU itself, and the labor movement as a whole. We strongly urge you to avoid such a tragedy.


  1. http://www.cpcs.umb.edu/directory/staff/ewing.htm CPCS Staff directory, accessed March 8, 2011]
  2. http://www.cpcs.umb.edu/directory/staff/ewing.htm CPCS Staff directory, accessed March 8, 2011]
  3. http://www.cpcs.umb.edu/directory/staff/ewing.htm CPCS Staff directory, accessed March 8, 2011]
  4. PWW May 6, 1995 May Day Supplement page D
  5. BURLAK TIMPSON LABOR FORUM AND RED FLAME AWARD home page, accessed March 8, 2011