Tim Mackey, Union Leader Retires, Governor Walz Proclaims January 24 “Tim Mackey Day”

Left to right: Sisters Colleen McKay, Katy Demouth, Jackie Jablonski, Tim Mackey, Governor Tim Walz, Mary Mackey (mother), sister Patty Tacheny.
Jan 23 2020

Pictured left to right: Sisters Colleen McKay, Katy Demouth, Tim Mackey, Governor Tim Walz, Jackie Jablonski, Mary Mackey (mother), sister Patty Tacheny.


Contact: Liz Xiong
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Tim Mackey, Union Leader Retires, Governor Walz Proclaims January 24 “Tim Mackey Day”
Joel Smith, District Council Representative, to take over as President and Business Manager

Saint Paul, MN – A longtime champion for Minnesota’s working people, Tim Mackey, will retire from his job with the Laborers’ International Union of North America (LIUNA) Minnesota and North Dakota on January 24.

Mackey was born and raised in White Bear Lake and started as a general construction laborer working for Mortenson Construction in 1987. He rose over the decades from being a rank-and-file member to becoming the Business Manager of LIUNA Local 563. He served every position in the union: Executive Board Member, Business Agent, Dispatcher, Financial Secretary-Treasurer, Business Manager and finally, President and Business Manager of the District Council.

Tim Mackey often said “united we stand, divided we fall.” He lived by those words, consistently pushing LIUNA, the building trades unions, and the larger labor movement to join forces and act collectively.

After his successful election, Governor Tim Walz invited Mackey to serve on the Walz-Flanagan administration’s One Minnesota Transition Advisory Board. The governor proclaimed January 24, 2020, as “Tim Mackey Day” to recognize his outstanding career impact as a union leader.

During his tenure, Mackey governed a full spectrum of LIUNA’s member benefit funds, dedicating his leadership and time to the Minnesota Laborers’ Health and Welfare Fund, Minnesota Laborers’ Vacation Fund and the Laborers-Employers Cooperation & Education Trust (LECET) of Minnesota. He also served on the boards for the Apprenticeship & Training Fund of Minnesota & North Dakota, the Minnesota Laborers’ Pension Fund, the Union Bank and Trust, and the Great Lakes Region Organizing Committee (GROC).

Throughout his career, Mackey became known as a passionate advocate for workers’ rights, safety, training, health and retirement benefits, prevailing wage, organizing, and collective bargaining. He has supported the interests of working Minnesotans as he provided direction for the broader labor movement on the executive boards of the Minnesota AFL-CIO and the Minnesota State Building and Construction Trades Council, as well as the board of trustees for the Fair Contracting Foundation, Laborers Users Contractors (LUC) Committee and the Union Construction Workers’ Compensation Program.

Mackey defended Laborers with his heart and soul, and working people are better off today because he dedicated his life’s work to the labor movement. An elite-world class trap shooter, he looks forward to fulfilling his lifelong dream of traveling across the country with his wife and two dogs to compete in trap shooting tournaments.

Joel Smith, a 29-year LIUNA member, who worked at Xcel Energy and served as a Local 563 business agent and dispatcher will take over as President and Business Manager of the District Council.

“Tim Mackey’s dedication to laborers is unmatched and we can’t thank him enough for all he has done to improve working people’s lives. I look forward to building on Tim’s legacy to fight for family-supporting jobs and working people’s freedom to prosper.”


Pictured: Joel Smith and Tim Mackey


Tim Mackey’s timeline with LIUNA Minnesota & North Dakota:

  • June 30, 1987             Joined LIUNA working for Mortenson Construction
  • June 6, 1992               Elected to Local 563 Executive Board, At-Large Member
  • August 30, 1995          Elected as Local 563 Recording Secretary
  • February 5, 1996         Promoted as Local 563 Business Agent
  • August 31, 1999          Promoted as Local 563 Dispatcher
  • February 26, 2004       Elected as Local 563 Financial Secretary-Treasurer
  • July 27, 2009               Elected to serve as Local 563 Business Manager
  • April 1, 2017                Elected to serve as LIUNA Minnesota & North Dakota President & Business Manager
  • January 24, 2020        Last day 

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Chartered in 1968 by the Laborers’ International Union of North America (LIUNA), LIUNA Minnesota & North Dakota, a.k.a. Laborers’ District Council, is based in Saint Paul and serves the members, families and retirees of five Local Unions: Local 563 (Minneapolis-Saint Paul Metro, Mankato & Saint Cloud Areas & North Dakota); Local 405 (Rochester & Southeast Minnesota); Local 1091 (Duluth-Superior, Northeast Minnesota & Northwest Wisconsin); Local 1097 (Iron Range & Northern Minnesota); and Local 363 (City & County Employees Union of Minneapolis-Saint Paul & Greater Minnesota).