Luis Mendoza

Luis Mendoza

International Vice President

Luis Mendoza has served as International Vice President of the USW since June 2023. Before assuming that office, he served as the National Paper Bargaining Chair for four years, overseeing bargaining for more than 550 locals and 30 bargaining councils.

Born in New Jersey and raised in Puerto Rico, Mendoza became a Steelworker at the age of 19 when he began working at the Hercules factory in Kenvil, N.J., and joined Local 12882.

In 1996, he accepted a transfer to the Radford Army Ammunition Depot in Virginia where he served on the local bargaining committee which negotiated the first contract at the facility. He worked there for 10 years as a member of the Oil, Chemical and Atomic Workers International Union (OCAW).

As a member of OCAW, Mendoza attended an organizing training course at the George Meany Center in Washington, D.C., and began working on the union’s organizing campaigns.

Over the years, Mendoza served in a number of leadership positions in his local union, including as a steward, health and safety coordinator and unit president. In 1999, OCAW merged with United Paperworkers International Union to form the Paper, Allied-Industrial, Chemical and Energy Workers International Union (PACE).

As a member of PACE, Mendoza began volunteering for the union’s political campaigns.

In 2005, PACE merged into the USW, and Mendoza became a Steelworker once again. A year later, he joined the USW international staff and began servicing locals in Virginia and West Virginia.

As a USW staff representative, Mendoza bargained contracts with major employers in the paper, steel, rubber and aerospace industries, among others.

In 2013, he joined the union’s collective bargaining department, a role in which he bargained major contracts with employers in the USW paper sector, and in 2019 was recognized as the National Paper Bargaining Chair in 2019. As International Vice President, Mendoza has responsibility for all facets of the sector, including bargaining but also safety, trade, legislative issues, global solidarity and organizing initiatives particularly in the box industry.