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In Memoriam: Edgar A. Scribner


It is hard to describe Edgar A. Scribner as anything else but a TEAMSTER.

Brother Scribner became a Teamster in 1951 at the age 19 when he was hired as a circulation district manager for the Detroit Free Press.

His Teamster membership was worn on his sleeve as he served Southeast Michigan and the entire country in a number of positions until his retirement in 2009 as Director of Teamsters Department of Retiree Affairs.

At the age of 20, Brother Scribner served abroad in Korea as a member of the United States Army, serving with distinction and awarded The Bronze Star Medal.

Upon his return, he resumed his newspaper career as a Teamsters Local 372 member while also earning a Bachelor of Science degree from Wayne State University.

In 1962 at the age of 30, Brother Scribner was elected Vice President of Teamsters Local 372, later winning local union elections as Trustee (1969) and then serving three terms as President (1972-1980)

Recognizing his strength in representing Teamster members at the local union level, Brother Scribner would be tapped in 1981 to serve within Michigan Teamsters Joint Council 43 for a number of positions including D.R.I.V.E. Treasurer and Community Services Director.  He built a strong relationship between the Teamsters, Organized Labor, and community and political organizations throughout Michigan.

But in 1988, Brother Scribner took on even a much larger role, becoming President of the Metro Detroit AFL-CIO representing nearly 330,000 union members in Southeast Michigan.

His role with the labor council was leading a solidarity movement of hundreds of local unions at a critical time of attacks on working men and women from both employers and political action.  He did this with distinction and grace, but firmness and strength. Never forgetting his Teamster roots.

Brother Scribner oversaw and secured solidarity for many labor struggles during his tenure including the newspapers strike of 1995 that embroiled nearly 2,500 workers.

In addition, he represented and helped working families by serving with a number of community organizations including Wayne State University (Board of Governors, 1992-2000), United Way of Michigan, United Way of Southeast Michigan, Economic Alliance of Michigan, Michigan State University, Southeast Michigan Council of Governments, Detroit Area Council of Boy Scouts, and the Community Foundation of Southeastern Michigan.

One of his most important roles was serving as an instructor and mentor to union members and activists through labor education centers at University of Michigan and Wayne State University. He provided countless opportunities to tap his experience and expertise on contract negotiations, union activism, political involvement and leadership qualities – inside and outside the classroom.

Brother Scribner held many positions in his lifetime of service to this community, but at his core was being Union!  At his core was demanding justice for workers! At his core was standing along side working men and women, whether on a picket line or at the bargaining table!

Ed Scribner personified being a TEAMSTER!