Sister Lorraine Sigurdson Awarded the Stanley Knowles Solidarity Award

February 12, 2014

Sister Lorraine Sigurdson was awarded the Stanley Knowles Solidarity Award at the 2014 Manitoba NDP Convention in Winnipeg.  It recognizes her many contributions to both the labour movement and the NDP over her decades of activision.

Here is Brother Rebeck’s Award speech to Sister Sigurdson:

                                                2014 Stanley Knowles Solidarity Award
                                                                Lorraine Sigurdson

Ever since the Stanley Knowles Solidarity Award was first created at this Convention in 1994, the presentation ceremony has become one of the most pleasant duties taken on by all four Presidents of the Manitoba Federation of Labour who have served since then.

The reasons for implementing the award were to provide an opportunity to recognize the special relationship between Labour and Party, the 75th Anniversary of the Winnipeg General Strike, and the 25th Anniversary of the Manitoba NDP first forming government under Ed Schreyer in 1969.

The Stanley Knowles Solidarity Award is presented at each Convention of the Manitoba New Democratic Party to a trade unionist who has shown a deep commitment to working people and the achievement of social justice through recognized contributions to the union movement and the Manitoba New Democratic Party.

As you know, Stanley Knowles epitomized the special relationship between the NDP and Labour, which this award is intended to recognize.  As a lifelong member of the International Typographical Union, a founding member of the CCF/NDP, a member of the Canadian Labour Congress Executive, and a long serving Member of Parliament, Stanley Knowles worked tirelessly to advance the causes of social justice for working people through both Labour and Party.

Today, I am proud to present this award to our Sister, Party Past-President Lorraine Sigurdson.
Lorraine served the Manitoba NDP for many years as a tireless campaign worker, she was active at the constituency level, a member of the Provincial Executive and as Party President through a particularly trying time.  Today, she is President of the Gimli Constituency.

When the Sister retired from active service to the labour movement in 2007, she was an Education Representative with the Canadian Union of Public Employees,  responsible for the organization and delivery of union education to CUPE members in areas such as collective bargaining, equality issues, and steward and executive training.  Sister Lorraine did a great deal of workplace training around the issues of harassment and bullying.  She also served as CUPE’s Health Care Coordinator doing collective bargaining and assisting with collective agreement administration in the health care sector.

Lorraine served for 16 years as a member of the Manitoba Federation of Labour Executive Council, both as a Vice-President and as Executive Vice-President. In 2006, Lorainne was presented with the MFL Woman of the Year Award.  Sister Sigurdson served on the executive of CUPE Local 1550, including in the position of President, was Secretary-Treasurer of the Winnipeg Labour Council, and Secretary of CUPE Manitoba Division.

She served as a member of the board of the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority from 2000 to 2006 and as a member of the Manitoba Labour Board for more than 15 years.  She was also a member of the Manitoba Human Rights Commission.  Lister Sigurdson currently serves as a member of the Manitoba Liquor Licensing Board and Manitoba Gaming Control Commission.

Lorraine and her late husband Murray Craddock, lived in Winnipeg’s West End for 19 years until their move to the Interlake to enjoy their retirement home.  Today, she is the proud Stepmom to two sons and Amma (grandma) to three granddaughters and one grandson.

Sisters and Brothers, please join me in applauding the 2014 holder of the Stanley Knowles Solidarity Award, Sister Lorraine Sigurdson.