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Who’s Who » Biographical Sketches (1939) »

William W. Campbell

Rochester is the adopted home of the international vice-president of the AFL Glass Bottle Blowers Association of the United States and Canada, William W. Campbell, a very approachable gentleman. In this office, which he has held for the past ten years, Mr. Campbell negotiates for the 210 locals of his union, most of the wage agreement throughout the country with the many different glass manufacturers.

He was born in Honesdale, Pa., where he worked, as a boy, in a glass factory and on the old Delaware and Hudson Canal. After serving five years (the required time) apprenticeship at the glass blowing trade, he left home at the age of 18. Arriving in Rochester in 1902, Campbell worked for the F.E. Reed Glass Co., of this city for twenty years.

During his many years as a workman, he always belonged to, and was extremely active in, the labor movement. He has been a member of Local Union No. 26, G.B.B.A. for 26 years, serving as secretary for 15 years, and has represented this local at the Rochester Central Trades and Labor Council for 20 years.

His interest and activity in the labor field, however, is not confined to the local movement. When the State of New York inaugurated the State Labor Bureau, he was appointed by Madame Perkins as one of its sponsors. Later, when the National Labor Relations Act was established by the Federal Government, Campbell, then an International officer, with Mr. Finucane, now president of the Rochester Chamber of Commerce, and Mr. Randall of Mechanics Institute, served with and under Father Boland of Buffalo. This body covered Buffalo, Syracuse and Rochester, adjusting many disputes in this territory during an exciting period in labor history. The board functioned until it was finally dissolved and the job was put entirely in the hands of Father Boland. Campbell was appointed to the Board by President Roosevelt at the suggestion of U. S. Senator Wagner.

Prior to becoming vice-president of the Glass Blowers, he served his own organization as an executive officer for eight years and has represented his International Union at all AFL conventions for the past ten years. Each year he has been re-elected to succeed himself as vice-president of his International Union.

Mr. Campbell graduated from high school in Honesdale, after which he took up special night school courses such as English and mathematics.

Although he has not been an active baseball player and boxer for many years, he remains an enthusiastic fan of his favorite sports, “as a relaxation from labor.”

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