Teamsters History and Timeline

Teamsters History

The International Brotherhood of Teamsters was founded in 1903. It has 1.4 million working members and 500,000 retirees in the U.S. and Canada. The Teamsters Union originally represented horse team drivers and stable hands. Over time, the union branched out and now represents a wide variety of occupations. The IBT celebrated its centennial in 2003. The union entered into an archival services agreement with The George Washington University in 2007 and an archivist was hired in 2008.

man sitting in old ups truck

Teamsters Timeline

1850 - 1949 | 1950 - 1971 | 1972 - 1984 | 1985 - present

1850 - 1949


San Francisco draymen organize to regulate their charges.


Chicago hack owners and drivers organize to stabilize hack fares.


Formation of the Team Drivers International Union, with John Callihan as president.  Headquarters at 213 Franklin Street, Detroit, MI.


Chicago locals form the Teamsters National Union.


Amalgamation convention is held at Niagara Falls, NY, with Cornelius Shea as president of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters.  International Brotherhood of Teamsters headquarters established at 147 East Market Street, Indianapolis, IN.


August: 350 delegates meet in Cincinnati and vote to lay aside most of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters' funds for organizing and bargaining.  Shea as General President, E.L. Turley as General Secretary-Treasurer.


Chicago Teamsters strike Montgomery Ward; strike is broken.

Convention empowers General President Shea to appoint representatives and organizers where needed; the office of General Auditor is established with George W. Biggs as first auditor.  Thomas L. Hughes is elected General Secretary-Treasurer.


A breakaway group forms the United Teamsters of America.


Dan Tobin is elected General President; membership is about 20,000; three International office staff are employed.


Name is changed to the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, Chauffeurs, Stablemen and Helpers to reflect the union’s expanding jurisdiction.


Beginning of shift from horse team cartage to motor transport.


International Brotherhood of Teamsters seeks to organize bakery and confectionary wagon drivers.


International Brotherhood of Teamsters convention delegates decide to hold the convention every three years; also, convention entertainment had to be union members. First transcontinental delivery of merchandise by motor truck.


Decision is made to hold International Brotherhood of Teamsters convention every 5 years.


Tobin is elected American Federation of Labor Treasurer.

Teamsters represent women laundry workers; black women laundry workers receive the same pay as white workers.


Tobin is one of the two American delegates to the International Labor Conference in Amsterdam (the other is Samuel Gompers).


International Brotherhood of Teamsters votes to affiliate with the Canadian Trades and Labor Congress and with the American Federation of Labor Building Trades Department (not seated until 1928).


International Brotherhood of Teamsters reaches 75,000 members.


Four full-time organizers are on International Brotherhood of Teamsters payroll.


The Union Labor Life Insurance Company is established with Tobin on its Board of Directors.


Tobin resigns position of American Federation of Labor Treasurer; International Brotherhood of Teamsters is seated as member of the American Federation of Labor Building Trades Department.


Detroit Kroger warehouse “strawberry strike;” James R. Hoffa is spokesman for the strikers.


Tobin serves as chairman of the FDR campaign labor division. International Brotherhood of Teamsters reaches 75,000 members.


James R. Hoffa successfully organizes truckers who hauled automobiles out of Detroit and across the country.


Teamsters launch strike in Minneapolis; it lasts for 11 days of violent confrontation with police and the National Guard.


Convention delegates vote to outlaw membership in the Communist Party for International Brotherhood of Teamsters members.

Motor Carrier Act passed by Congress.

James R. Hoffa appointed business agent of Local 299, Detroit.


General maritime strike in San Francisco. International Brotherhood of Teamsters supports longshore and warehouse strikers.

James R. Hoffa is farmed out to Farrell Dobbs in Minneapolis to help organize over-the-road drivers.


Western Conference of Teamsters is established, headquartered in Seattle, with Dave Beck as chairman.

North Central District Drivers Council is formed under the leadership of Farrell Dobbs.


New York City teamsters strike for a 40-hour work week with no reduction in wages. Mayor LaGuardia serves as mediator; Teamsters agree to a 44-hour week.

Motor Carrier Safety rules are added to Motor Carrier Act.

Membership at 360,700.


Central States Area Agreement is negotiated by James R. Hoffa.


Fourteen full time organizers are on International Brotherhood of Teamsters payroll; the term “Stablemen” is eliminated from the International Brotherhood of Teamsters full name, and Warehousemen is added.


James R. Hoffa is appointed negotiating chairman of Central States Drivers Council.


James R. Hoffa is elected president of the Michigan Conference of Teamsters.

International Brotherhood of Teamsters establishes a research department (David Kaplan, director).


American unions agree to abide by a No-Strike Pledge for the duration of the War.

Tobin appoints James R. Hoffa a trustee of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters.

Membership at 534,000.


Southern Conference of Teamsters is formed.


James R. Hoffa is elected president of Local 299.

October: International Brotherhood of Teamsters launches a campaign to reinstate daily milk deliveries that had been limited to every other day during the war.


James R. Hoffa becomes president of Joint Council 43.

Judge George Murphy begins a grand jury investigation of James R. Hoffa and the Detroit Teamsters unions.


Congress passes the Taft-Hartley Bill; Truman vetoes it but Congress overrides the veto (Hartley cites James R. Hoffa as the reason for introducing the bill).

A new card index system replaces old ledger-based bookkeeping methods at International and locals.

December: Membership reaches the million mark.

At convention John English is elected General Secretary-Treasurer; International Brotherhood of Teamsters convention denounces Taft-Hartley.

Dave Beck is named Executive Vice President.


International office staff reaches 25; Secretary-Treasurer’s office modernizes, installing new machines and methods of control.

September: National Warehouse Conference is formed.

October: National Conference of Fruit, Vegetable and Produce Industries is formed; National Automotive, Petroleum and Allied Trades Division is formed.

November: National Truckaway and Driveaway Conference is formed; National Conference of Brewery and Soft Drink Workers is formed.

Formation of the National Laundry Drivers Division, National Dairy Conference and the Miscellaneous and the Retail Delivery Conference.


January: International Brotherhood of Teamsters trade divisions meet to kick-off a national organizing drive.

April 1-15: National over-the-road checking drive takes place.

Formation of the National Cannery Conference; National Bakery Drivers Conference; National Conference of Federal, State, County, Municipal and Public Service Employees; National Conference of Chauffeurs and Taxicab Drivers; and the National Conference of Building Materials and Construction Drivers.

Central States and Southern Conferences win employer-supported health and welfare plans.

1950 - 1971


April 17-19: Second annual organizing conference is held in Chicago.

June 18-23: Second National Truck Check held.

Membership at 1.2 million.


May 13-18: Third national Truck Check is held.


May 11-16: Fourth national Truck Check is held.

October: James R. Hoffa quits as Trustee and becomes 10th Vice President.

October 13-17: 16th convention is held in Los Angeles; Dan Tobin steps down as International Brotherhood of Teamsters General President; Dave Beck is elected his successor. Convention approves moving International Brotherhood of Teamsters headquarters to Washington, D.C., and endorses Adlai Stevenson for president. KTTV (LA) covers the convention proceedings; it is the first union convention to be televised.


January: International office is moved to Washington, D.C.; temporary offices are rented from NALC, 100 Indiana Ave., NW, and space in the Bowen Building – the International Brotherhood of Teamsters' Washington office – is also used; Einar Mohn is transferred from San Francisco to serve as assistant to Beck; the national research and statistical division and the publicity and promotion division are established; a national legislative division is planned; trade conference and division offices open in Washington.

"Operation Newark,” an organizing drive for New Jersey brewery workers is a success, seen as a model for future organizing efforts.

April: Central States Conference is officially launched, with James R. Hoffa as chairman.

June 14-19: National Truck Check.

August: Montgomery Ward organizing drive begins.

October: Eastern States Conference is launched.


President’s Advisory Committee on a National Highway Program issues “A 10-Year National Highway Program.” Beck is a member of this Committee.

June 5-10: Seventh National Safety Truck Check.

First conference of Teamster lawyers is held.

November 4: New headquarters building is dedicated at 25 Louisiana Ave, NW.

American Federation of Labor (AFL) and Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO) merge to form AFL-CIO.

Ward organizing drive ends successfully.


McClellan Committee hearings begin; among others, Dave Beck and James R. Hoffa are called to testify.

Beck steps down as International Brotherhood of Teamsters General President; on October 4, the convention elects James R. Hoffa as General President.

December: International Brotherhood of Teamsters is expelled from AFL-CIO.

James R. Hoffa is brought to trial on a NY grand jury wiretap indictment, ending in a hung jury.


January: International Brotherhood of Teamsters is put into receivership by a federal court, and a three-man Board of Monitors is assigned oversight; James R. Hoffa stays on as “provisional president;” a new International Brotherhood of Teamsters election is set for 1959; Hoffa sets up a 3-man Anti-Racketeering Commission: former Senator George Bender, F. Joseph Donohue, and Judge Ira Jayne.

Wiretap charge is retried, Hoffa is acquitted.

August: representatives of the Teamsters, National Maritime Union and International Longshoremen's Association hold a Conference on Transportation Unity in Washington.

Office of Public Relations and Publications is established.

Membership reaches 1.5 million.


McClellan Committee ends its investigations.

Landrum-Griffin Act is passed by Congress.

May: International Brotherhood of Teamsters convention elects James R. Hoffa president by overwhelming vote.

Legislative and Political Action Department is established.


Twenty-two general organizers are on the International Brotherhood of Teamsters payroll.

First area-wide bakery contract is won in New England.

February: National Over-the-Road Freight Study is completed.

March: DRIVE launched at rallies in several locations across the US.

IBT Executive Board endorses neither Kennedy nor Nixon.

Membership reaches 1.7 million.


Attorney Robert F. Kennedy launches a Justice Department campaign against organized crime with James R. Hoffa as a specific target (“Get Hoffa”).

February: Judge Letts rules favorably on International Brotherhood of Teamsters motion seeking a new convention. Canadian Over-the-Road Freight Study published.

July: 18th IBT convention held in Miami; James R. Hoffa is reelected president.

August: Airline Division is established; International Brotherhood of Teamsters and Mine, Mill and Smelter sign a mutual assistance pact.

September: DRIVE launches a major membership campaign. Hoffa meets with the Bakery and Confectionery Executive Board to discuss merger.

DRIVE sets up Women’s Auxiliaries in 16 states.


March: Laundry Workers vote to affiliate with the International Brotherhood of Teamsters.

May: James R. Hoffa is indicted on charges of accepting illegal payments from an employer in violation of the Taft Hartley Act (Test Fleet case); he is acquitted in December.

June: Canadian Conference is disbanded and Canadian locals join US regional conferences bordering their provinces of operation.

November: membership stands at 1.7 million.


James R. Hoffa is indicted for jury tampering in the Test Fleet case.

International Brotherhood of Teamsters Executive Board, General Organizers, Joint Council presidents and representatives of freight locals meet in Washington to formulate plans for a national freight contract in 1964.


January: James R. Hoffa signs the National Master Freight Agreement. Jury tampering trial begins in Chattanooga, TN.

March 12: James R. Hoffa is sentenced to eight years in a federal penitentiary.

April: James R. Hoffa goes on trial in Chicago for defrauding the Central States Pension Fund in relation to a Sun Valley, FL, real estate development project; he receives a five year sentence (13 years total).

Computers are introduced in Secretary-Treasurer’s operations (payroll, mailing lists, out-of-work benefit forms).

June: Kroger signs a national contract with International Brotherhood of Teamsters warehouse locals.

Teamster locals launch a Hoffa defense fund drive.


U.S. Supreme Court reviews Hoffa's case and upholds conviction, with Earl Warren dissenting (Byron White and Abe Fortas withdrew).

International Brotherhood of Teamsters convention delegates approve establishment of the James R. Hoffa scholarship program.


January: James R. Hoffa files a new motion with the Supreme Court on the basis of new evidence. The Court decides not to reconsider its decision.

March 7: Hoffa begins serving his 13 year sentence in Lewisburg Federal Penitentiary; Frank Fitzsimmons begins serving as “caretaker” president.


July 23: The executive boards of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters and United Automobile Workers agree to establish an Alliance for Labor Action.

International Brotherhood of Teamsters membership hits 2 million.


January: Pan American World Airways clerical and cargo employees vote to affiliate with the International Brotherhood of Teamsters.

February: John F. English dies.

May:  General Executive Board establishes the Teamster Labor Institute; Alliance for Labor Action holds founding convention in Washington, D.C.

October: James R. Hoffa applies for parole, is denied.

Joint Council 42 in partnership with UCLA’s Institute of Industrial Relations gets Labor Department approval to launch the Transportation Opportunity Program (TOP).


January:  General Executive Board approves restructuring of trade divisions, eliminating and/or consolidating a number of divisions (see IT 2-70), from almost 20 to 7 major divisions.

May: International Brotherhood of Teamsters joins Operating Engineers and Laborers in setting up a national committee to resolve disputes among them that cannot be resolved at the local level.

September: Canadian Teamsters meet in Winnipeg to devise means to better coordinate Teamster activities in Canada.


James R. James R. Hoffa resigns as General President.

June 21: Frank Fitzsimmons becomes General President at a special meeting of the GEB.

July: Fitzsimmons is elected General President at 20th International Brotherhood of Teamsters Convention; Dave Beck is in attendance.

August: Hoffa’s parole application is denied.

October: Fitzsimmons is named to Nixon’s Pay Board.

December: President Richard M. Nixon commutes Hoffa's sentence; he is freed on December 23.

1972 - 1984


January: Ray Schoessling replaces Harold Gibbons as director of the Central States Conference.
International Brotherhood of Teamsters joins with the National Automobile Transporters to launch a program of voluntary compliance with Occupational Safety and Health Administration mandates.

March: Secretary-Treasurer Thomas Flynn dies; Murray W. Miller succeeds Flynn.

May: Fitzsimmons is awarded the Silver Anniversary Medal by State of Israel.

July: General Executive Board endorses Richard Nixon for president; various forms of active campaign support follow (such as the Northern California Labor for Nixon Committee).

August: International Brotherhood of Teamsters and Brewery Workers announce procedures that will lead to merger; International Brotherhood of Teamsters launches “America on the Move” – a traveling 40-foot van that makes information on drugs and the environment available to the cities it visits.


October: Department of Safety and Health is established at International Brotherhood of Teamsters, with R.V. Durham as director.

November: Brewery Workers convention approves merger into International Brotherhood of Teamsters.


Einar Mohn retires as director of the Western Conference; M.E. ‘Andy’ Anderson replaces him.

January: An Organizing Department is established at International Brotherhood of Teamsters, naming Secretary-Treasurer Murray as director and Norman Goldstein and John Greeley as assistant directors. Roy Williams is named head of the National Freight Division, a position vacant since the death of Thomas Flynn in 1972.

National Freight Joint Safety Committee is formed as required by Article 16 of the National Master Freight Agreement.

Membership reaches 2.2 million.

March: Al Weiss steps down as Director of Research and is replaced by Norman Weintraub and Tony Ciesla. 

Local 1973 is chartered to cover 50,000 farm workers.

May: a fully-staffed in-house Legal Department is established, Legislative Department is also established; DRIVE Ladies Auxiliary chapters are abolished.

Fall: Department of Government Relations is established at International Brotherhood of Teamsters.


January: Murray Miller resigns Secretary-Treasurer role and is replaced by Ray Schoessling. Teamsters National Black Caucus is formed.

February: Teamsters National Emergency Economic Conference is held in Washington; 700 delegates from across the country attend.

July 30: James R. Hoffa disappears.

August: California law goes into effect allowing farm workers secret ballot elections; after a month of balloting the majority of votes go to Teamsters.

October: Canadian Conference is (re-)established with Edward Lawson as director.


March 9: Canadian Conference holds founding convention in Toronto.

June: International Brotherhood of Teamsters holds 21st convention, Fitzsimmons is re-elected General President with Schoessling as General Secretary-Treasurer; nearly 100 changes to constitution are made.

September: General Executive Board conducts a member presidential preference poll via US mail.

October: Jackie Presser is named Vice President. National Safety and Health Conference takes place in Arlington Heights, IL.


March: Teamsters and UFWA sign a jurisdictional pact that provides Teamsters jurisdiction over all workers covered under the NLRA.

April: GEB launches an Energy Action program to monitor fuel use, allocation and price.

April 6: 2000 IBT member representatives meet at Washington conference to show support for Fitzsimmons and Schoessling, purposing to counter the onslaught of new media attacks on IBT.

July: GEB authorizes a new educational program for local representatives.

October: GEB discusses the Labor Law Reform Bill sent to the Senate following House passage.


January: Teamster Labor Academy program kicks off in Washington.

December: First National Master Agreement with Anheuser-Busch is signed. IBT becomes involved with the National Easter Seal Society’s yearly fund-raising effort.


New union stewards training program developed, coordinated by Research and Education Department (Arthur Kane, director).

ICC moves to deregulate the trucking industry through its rulemaking authority.

November: Fitzsimmons announces a boycott of Pittsburgh Plate Glass products.


GEB endorses an IBT-wide Energy Action Plan.

April: A new Industrial Trades Division is formed, with Joseph Konowe as director.

May: New IBT organizing manual becomes available; Research and Education Department staff hold first stewards’ seminar in Canadian Conference for Local 1000, Stoney Creek, Ontario.

July: Jimmy Carter signs the trucking deregulation bill Motor Carrier Act of 1980.

September 12: Josephine Hoffa dies in Detroit.

October: GEB endorses Reagan for president; International Association of Retired Teamsters holds its founding convention in Washington, D.C.

November: Reagan and Bush visit IBT in Washington to thank the union for its support. Research and Education Department holds a series of stewards’ training workshops around the country.


May 6: Frank Fitzsimmons dies of cancer at the Scripps Clinic, La Jolla, CA.

June: 22nd Convention held in Las Vegas; Roy Williams is elected General President.

July: Research and Education Department holds the first regional stewards training program at Maricopa Community College, Phoenix, AZ.


Summer: Research and Education Department develops a new educational program on organizing.

Fall: Research and Education Department splits into two separate departments.

November 17: Harold Gibbons dies in Los Angeles two days after suffering a stroke during an IBT speaking engagement.

Winter: Williams “activates” ITRA, which had been dormant due to the deaths of Frank Fitzsimmons and ITRA’s first director, Joe Knight, plus the 22nd convention.


April: GEB elects Jackie Presser as General President following Roy Williams’ resignation.

Summer: A new Newspaper Drivers Division is announced; Department of Retiree Affairs is formed, Norman Greene as director; Paul Locigno becomes Director of Government Affairs. Regional Coors boycott goes union-wide.

August: Presser addresses the ITU convention and invites ITU to merge with IBT.

October: ITU delegation visits IBT for tour and briefing of services.


January: Organizing Department holds first National Organizing Conference in Washington, D.C., with 250 attendees; IBT National Housing Program is unveiled using federal grants with matching state funds to construct homes for Teamster retirees and disabled people.

March: IBT and ITU reach a tentative merger agreement.

June: Pennsylvania Conference of Teamsters holds its founding convention.

September: GEB endorses Reagan/Bush.

Fall: Retirees Affairs Department announces a new program that will help retired Teamsters with car rentals, supplemental Medicare and eye care.

December: Producers Guild of America affiliates with IBT.

1985 - present


January: Ray Schoessling steps down as General Secretary-Treasurer; Weldon Mathis replaces him. “Buy American” program launches.

March: Human Services Department is established, with Fr. David Boilleau as director.

May: IBT establishes an Asian Pacific branch in Taipei, Taiwan.

July: Retirees Affairs Department begins volunteer medical and health care equipment loan program; first National Trades Divisions meeting takes place in Dearborn.

TeamCare is established by the Central States, Southeast and Southwest Health and Welfare Fund.


February 13: Leadership Academy is inaugurated.

March: Teamster history project is inaugurated under Frank Gannon as project director.

July: IBT holds Teamster Teacher Training Program at Cornell; 23rd convention is held in Las Vegas.

Fall: Teamsters International Service Bureau Program is set up at IBT, modeled on the Ohio Conference of Teamsters Family Services Program.

October: IBT kicks off a national drug awareness program, with Sylvester Stallone as spokesman.

November 14-16: First Teamsters Conference on Women in the Workplace takes place in Dallas; Jackie Presser leads an IBT delegation to England, Germany and Spain.


February: IBT and TMI’s Joint Committee on Industry Development hold a conference in Washington to discuss challenges and trends in the freight industry.

April 8-9: IBT hosts a conference of the Joint Council of Flight Attendant Unions.

August 3: Special leadership session is held in San Diego to address the rumored takeover of the IBT by the US Department of Justice.

September 15: 5000 Teamsters meet in Cincinnati to develop a plan of action to thwart a federal takeover of the IBT; a grassroots movement against takeover continues after the meeting.

October: GEB votes to re-affiliate with the AFL-CIO.


IBT announces a boycott of Shell Oil for its role in maintaining apartheid in South Africa.

January: IBT begins an organizing campaign at Overnite Transportation plants in Ohio.

April: Atlanta-area Teamsters join the “Jobs with Justice” march in Atlanta.

June 28: GEB releases a statement denouncing the filing of a RICO lawsuit by the Department of Justice, aimed at taking over the IBT.

July 9: Jackie Presser dies of cancer and heart disease; William McCarthy is chosen to replace him.

October: GEB endorses George H.W. Bush for President.

October 28: 2000 Teamsters meet in Chicago in a special leadership session to discuss the IBT’s future in light of the RICO lawsuit.


February: IBT joins with three other unions representing newspaper workers in the Newspaper Industry Coordinating Committee to combat union-busting in the newspaper industry.

March 14: IBT settles the RICO suit with Department of Justice; Edward Lacey is named independent administrator.

April: Fifteen-month-long Ohio Overnite organizing campaign is victorious.

June: Retiree Affairs Department publishes a paper and distributes a petition supporting universal health care funding.

October 7: IBT joins AFL-CIO and 150 national and community organizations in a Housing NOW! March in Washington, D.C., calling for decent, affordable housing.


April: IBT launches a national Overnite organizing campaign.

November/December: Strategic Planning Committee is formed.


January: GEB passes a resolution in support of the Persian Gulf War.

May 10: Weldon Mathis announces that he will not seek re-election as General Secretary-Treasurer.

June: IBT holds its 24th International Convention at Orlando, FL, with William McCarthy presiding; delegates nominate candidates for international office: Durham, Shea and Carey are candidates for GP; Leu, Ligurotis and Sever for GS-T.

August: IBT members participate in AFL-CIO Solidarity Day in Washington, D.C.

September: October and November issues of The International Teamster carry ads in support of or opposition to various people who are running for international office.

Various subcommittees of the Strategic Planning Committee are formed; these include Organizing/Retention, Restructuring, Women and Minority Affairs, Image Development, Benefit/Negotiating, and International.

November: Ballots are sent out to membership with a December 10 deadline; International Teamsters Women’s Caucus is formed in Boston on November 2.

December: Ron Carey is elected GP, Tom Sever as GS-T.

Diamond Walnut boycott is launched as striking Diamond workers are permanently replaced.


February 1: Carey is inaugurated as General President at IBT in Washington, D.C.

April/May: Name of IBT magazine is changed from The International Teamster to The New Teamster.

July: Carey establishes IBT Human Rights Commission; Household Goods, Moving and Storage Division is established (split off from Building Material and Construction Division).

August: Carey establishes a new Ethical Practices Committee, to be assisted by Decision Strategies, Inc.

September: IBT endorses Bill Clinton for President.


IBT establishes the Teamster Privilege program, offering credit cards and other benefits.


February 18: A membership referendum ballot is mailed out to IBT members to vote for or against a dues increase to replenish the strike benefits fund and other IBT programs; the increase is rejected by a 3-1 margin.

March 4-6: Teamsters Women’s Conference is held in Chicago.

The four US area conferences are abolished.


January: Warehouse Division wins national contract with Kroger grocery chain; The Teamster Leader begins publication.

March: The New Teamster is renamed Teamster.

April: Teamsters Warehouse Division News and Teamsters Brewery & Soft Drink Update begin publication.

July 13: Detroit newspaper strike begins, six unions are involved, including IBT.

September 15-17: Teamsters Civil Rights Conference is held in Washington, D.C.


July: International convention is held in Philadelphia.

November: Ballots are mailed for International office election with a December 14 deadline; Carey and James P. Hoffa are the candidates for General President. Ron Carey is re-elected, beating Hoffa by close margin of 52% to 48%.


March 22: Carey is sworn in for a second term as General President.

August: UPS workers win a new and better contract after 15 days on strike.

October: Carey’s election win is reversed due to charges of use of IBT funds by his campaign; a new election is set for 1998. Carey takes leave to appeal his disqualification; the General Secretary-Treasurer takes up presidential duties in the meantime, with the Independent Financial Auditor put in his place.


November 2: Ballots are mailed to IBT membership with a December 3 deadline. The main contenders are Tom Leedham and James P. Hoffa; Hoffa wins by a margin of 54.5% to 39.3%.


May 1: James P. Hoffa is inaugurated as General President; his sister Judge Barbara Crancer administers the oath of office.

Summer: National carhaul contract is ratified.

October: New push begins against allowing unsafe Mexican trucks from crossing the border and driving on U.S. highways; Overnite strike begins in Memphis on October 24.

November: Anti-corruption task force is formed, composed of senior IBT staff with assistance from former assistant U.S. attorney Ed Stier and Judge Harris Hartz.

December: Labor Research Association holds dinner honoring James P. Hoffa. Clinton speaks at the event in opposition to unsafe Mexican trucking on U.S. roads.


January 19-20: James P. Hoffa briefs joint council officers on anti-corruption measures in Chicago.

Spring: GEB authorizes the James R. Hoffa Memorial Scholarship Fund.

June 16: TNBC holds its 25th anniversary educational conference in Las Vegas.

September: GEB endorses Al Gore for president.

October 23-26: First Teamsters CPA Conference takes place in Las Vegas.

November/December: First Unity Conference is held in Las Vegas.


June 25-26: International convention begins in Las Vegas; resolutions include establishing a National Organizing Training Program. A Blue Ribbon Commission is created to examine how to better finance union activity; the separate national identity of Canadian Teamsters is acknowledged; Project RISE is created.

September: NYC Teamsters help in terror attack debris cleanup.

October 21: Ballots are mailed to membership with a November 12 deadline; James P. Hoffa and Tom Leedham are the contenders for General President.


January: James P. Hoffa is re-elected General President by a 2-1 margin; GEB passes resolution to support the new Teamster Capital Strategies Program, the purpose of which is to help members actively exercise their ownership and shareholder rights in pension fund and health and welfare trusts.

March: Independent financial auditorship is lifted; IBT officers are sworn in at Teamster Women’s Conference held in Chicago on March 22.

April 30: A Special Convention is held in Las Vegas to approve the Blue Ribbon Finance Commission’s report and findings.

September: A new bilingual Welcome to the Teamsters handbook becomes available.

November/December: The Teamsters: Perception and Reality: An Investigative Study of Organized Crime Influence in the Union is produced, part of the RISE program.


January: Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen affiliate with IBT.

IBT endorses John Kerry for President

October 26: Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way employees votes to affiliate with IBT.


January: Graphic Communications International Union affiliates with IBT.

August: IBT disaffiliates with AFL-CIO and joins six other unions to form the Change to Win Coalition.

September: IBT lends major support to Hurricane Katrina disaster assistance efforts.


June: IBT holds its 27th convention in Las Vegas, NV.

November: Hoffa and Keegel are re-elected General President and General Secretary-Treasurer, respectively.

Teamsters History and Timeline Staff

International Brotherhood of Teamsters Labor History Archivist