On Saturday, May 6, 2017, UAW President Dennis Williams was honored at the 2017 Annual Douglass Debs Dinner. The dinner was sponsored by the Greater Detroit Local chapter of the Democratic Socialists of America. It was held at the historic UAW Local 600 in Dearborn, Michigan.
The Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) is one of the largest socialists and progressive organizations in the United States. DSA fights alongside other progressive organizations for social change and a place for a socialist presence in American political discourse and communities. The Greater Detroit Local of the DSA is comprised of activists in the metro Detroit area as well as the greater southeastern Michigan region. DSA activists work to organize and empower working people to fight for social justice and democratic socialism through legislative means and direct action, among other tactics.
The DSA’s annual Douglass Debs Dinner is the local chapter’s sole fundraiser for the year. The dinner raises needed money to fund the entirety of activities the Greater Detroit DSA will be involved in throughout the next year. The event was co-chaired by UAW Vice President and Director of the UAW’s General Motors Department, Cindy Estrada and Michigan AFL-CIO President Ron Bieber. Honorees included UAW President Dennis Williams and Michigan United.
The Douglass Debs Dinner is named after two important figures in American history: Frederick Douglass and Eugene V. Debs. Frederick Douglass was a famed abolitionist in the late 1800s that one biographer called “the most influential African-American of the nineteenth century.” Eugene V. Debs was a union leader and five time candidate for president for the Socialist Party of America.
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