Makahonuk, Glen Richard, 1951-1997

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Makahonuk, Glen Richard, 1951-1997

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Born on 15 September 1951, Glen Richard Makahonuk was raised, educated and employed in Saskatoon. He earned a B.Comm. in 1973 specializing in industrial relations and general business. The following year he completed a B.A. in history and in 1977 convocated with a M.A. Labour history in western Canada became a lifelong passion. His thesis Labour Relations in the Saskatchewan Coal Mines during the 1930's marked the beginning of an extensive investigation into a previously neglected field of study. In 1978 he began working as the senior library assistant in the Library's Special Collections department. In addition to his notoriety as a labour historian, Makahonuk was a well known labour and social activist. His involvement with the University CUPE Local 1975 was immediate, eventually serving as serving as President, Vice-President, and the chair of several committees. As time progressed so did the scope of his union activity. He was elected CUPE Saskatchewan President, CUPE National Regional Vice President (Saskatchewan) and General Vice President (Saskatchewan and Manitoba). Makahonuk was also a familiar presence on picket lines, supporting locked-out and striking workers and protesting social program cutbacks. He balanced his work for the rank and file with his advocacy for greater union democracy with his belief in social unionism and the promotion of a greater social role for the labour movement. He had been recently re-elected Regional VP CUPE National when he was diagnosed in November of 1997 with an inoperable brain tumour. He died 10 December 1997.


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