Pearl Sawyer has dedicated her life to improving the rights and livelihoods of workers across Canada. A renowned and well-respected leader in the labour movement, Sister Sawyer’s achievements and commitment to protecting and enhancing workplace rights and the health and safety of workers have made her a trailblazer in Ontario and beyond.
A former packinghouse worker, Pearl served as Secretary-Treasurer of the PEI Federation of Labour before being hired by Local 1000A in 1982.
At Local 1000A, Pearl rose through the ranks, serving as Organizer, Director of Education and Research, Executive Assistant to the President and Executive Vice-President. From 2011 to 2016, she served as president of UFCW Canada Local 1000A.
In April 2016, Sister Sawyer as elected as Executive Vice-President of UFCW Canada Local 1006A. She also serves as a UFCW International Vice-President; a World Executive Board Member with UNI Global Union; and a UFCW Representative with UNI Commerce Global Steering Committee.
Pearl Sawyer is also the longest serving vice-president on Ontario Federation of Labour Executive Board and is a co-chair of the Workers’ Compensation, Health and Safety and Women’s Committees.
On October 24, 2011, Beatrice Bruske was elected Secretary-Treasurer of UFCW Canada Local 832.
Beatrice first became a member activist during the Westfair strike of 1987. Following the strike, she became a shop steward, and later served on the Health and Safety committee, and as a vice-president on the Local 832 Executive Board.
Sister Bruske became a full-time union representative with Local 832 in 1994, and a full-time negotiator in July 2004. She is also a member of the Executive Council of the Manitoba Federation of Labour, and an Employee Representative on the Manitoba Labour Board. Bea holds an Arts degree from the University of Manitoba where she majored in Labour Studies.
Terry Harris is President of UFCW Canada Local 649. Local 649 consists of one bargaining unit at Federated Co-operatives Limited in Saskatoon, with five separate and unique sites — head office, warehouse, feed mill, Saskatoon propane plant, and Melfort propane plant.
Sister Harris started working at Federated in 1999, and over the years served as an elected Shop Steward, Vice-President, and now as President since 2013. As well as leading Local 649, Terry Harris continues to work as a rank-and-file member in the Marketing Services Department at Federated.
Sister Harris is also politically active as a member of the Saskatchewan New Democratic Party Provincial Council, as well as the Federal Executive representing Saskatoon Humboldt. Sister Harris is also a member of the Philanthropic Educational Organization (PEO) which supports the educational advancement of women to achieve their highest aspirations.
Louise Lefebvre became a member of UFCW Local 503 in 1978 when she was hired as a cashier at the Steinberg Lebourgneuf store in Québec City where she later worked as a deli clerk and seafood clerk, and in the production area of the bakery department. In 1991, she went to work for Provigo as head seafood clerk at the l'Ormière Boulevard store.
The following year, she was appointed Vice-president of Local 503’s executive board. Louise then joined the local’s team of full-time service reps in October 1999. From that point on she became actively involved in her community and formed a Women’s Committee at the local union, among other initiatives.
Between 2001 and 2012, Sister Lefebvre served as Recorder for Local 503. She also sits on various committees, such as the FTQ’s Gay and Lesbian Rights Committee, the UFCW Canada Human Rights, Equity and Diversity Committee, in addition to serving as administrator on DétailQuébec’s executive board. Through some of these committees she has developed many contacts with employers, with other local unions across the country and with UFCW Canada leaders.
Louise Lefebvre is a woman with a big heart who has proven to have character and integrity. She has always worked for the best interest of the members and it is with this same desire to do the right thing that she will begin her new position as President of UFCW Canada Local 503 in January 2013.