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UC Regents, Institute for Research on Labor and Employment
10945 Le Conte Ave, Suite 2107
Los Angeles, CA 90095.
UNITE HERE Local 11
464 South Lucas Avenue, Suite 201
Los Angeles, CA 90017
Biography/History: Susan Minato was born and raised in New Jersey, where her parents resettled after being interned during the roundup of Japanese Americans during World War II. She went to law school and practiced law for several years before she was hired at UNITE HERE Local 11 as an organizer. She joined the staff early in the local’s transition to an activist organizing culture and oversaw shop stewards’ leadership training for many years. She is currently executive vice president and staff director for the union.
Scope/Content: Interview Contents: Family’s history in California and internment during World War II — Education and early career as a public interest lawyer and public defender — Work as a staff attorney for the Utility Workers Union (UWUA) in Los Angeles — Mike Woo’s 1993 mayoral campaign — Organizing with Local 11 in 1993 and working in Laughlin, Las Vegas, and San Diego — Mentorship in organizing by Karl Lechow — Building relationships and developing leaders — Disney campaign — Local 11’s emphasis on long-term strategy — Committee structures — Future of Local 11 as a model for what unions can do to change society — Experience as a mother in the labor movement.
Labor unions--California--Los Angeles Labor union locals--California--Los Angeles Susan Minato UNITE HERE Local 11