Jacqueline Thomas was Community’s president for 2017. Jacquie comes from a strong trade union family background and her first memories are of attending her father’s branch meetings at the local working men’s club in 1970. Trade unionism was so engrained in her family life that as a young child she helped her mother and other family members to collect food for families affected by the miner’s strike in the 70s and 80s. During her student years she actively took part in many debates regarding the strikes and in response to the government’s actions.
Jacquie first joined a trade union (AEEU) at the age of 18 and became a shop steward by the age of 20 for the GMB representing 200 people. Within a couple of years she was representing the union at conferences in Europe.
Upon becoming a full time employee of the steel industry in 2005 Jacquie was elected as a branch secretary at one of our Tata Steel Llanwern branches, which she still undertakes today, along with leading on union learning and equalities. Jacquie was the first woman to sit on the Strip Trade Board, the main negotiating body in Tata Steel’s Strip Products Division, and following a spell as Chair she was successfully elected to Community’s National Executive Council and the European Works Council for Tata Steel Europe.
When she isn’t campaigning for the future of the steel industry in Wales, she volunteers as Vice Chair for the Blaenau Gwent Constituency Labour Party and has served six years on the Welsh Labour Party National Executive representing Community members.
Jacquie was the Mayor for her home town of Tredegar for the year 2016/17 and also serves as a Labour Party Councillor. She spends her spare time fundraising for dementia and MS charities through Tredegar’s Mayor’s Appeal and spending time with her grandchildren (including taking them to local Pride marches).
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