Tag: Ben Gross

UAW Black History Month Spotlight: Ben Gross

Ben Gross was not only a leader in the labor movement, but also an icon in the civil rights movement and in the fight for racially integrated housing. His accomplishments eventually led him to elected office and then positions within UAW leadership. When Gross passed away in 2012, the city of Milpitas held a memorial service and named a street in his honor. Below is an interview conducted with Ben Gross in 2011 by UAW staff, reflecting on his life and accomplishments: Ben Gross: 62 years of service and still growing strong After 90 years there is still a sparkle ... Read more

UAW Black History Month Spotlight: Ben Gross

Ben Gross Gross became a UAW member in 1949 when he joined UAW Local 560 at Ford  Motor Co. in Richmond, California, and began a 62-year long affiliation with the UAW that included  a string of groundbreaking positions. In 1950, he became the first African-American elected to the local’s bargaining committee. Four years later, as chair of the local’s housing committee, he helped create the Sunnyhills cooperative development in Milpitas, California, the first labor-sponsored, planned, interracial community in the United  States. It was especially noteworthy in a city that, according to U.S. Census data from 1960, was 94 percent white, ... Read more