Jim Wilmesher was reelected by acclamation to the office of Chairman of the BLET’s Colorado State Legislative Board during the Board’s Fifth Quadrennial meeting in Denver, Colo., September 20-21, 2012.
Brother Wilmesher was first elected Chairman in 2008. He is a BNSF locomotive engineer and member of BLET Division 256 (Denver). He joined the Brotherhood on February 1, 1998.
Also elected by acclamation during the meeting was: 1st Vice Chairman Kevin Utterback, Division 47 (Denver); 2nd Vice Chairman Steve Wareham, Division 488 (Grand Junction); Secretary-Treasurer Paul Pearson, Division 133 (Denver); and Alternate Secretary-Treasurer Michael Bevirt, Division 940 (Denver).
Representing the BLET National Division at the meeting were: National President Dennis R. Pierce; National Secretary-Treasurer Bill Walpert; Vice President & National Legislative Representative John Tolman; National Vice President Mike Twombly; and Special Representative and Coordinator of Education and Training Ken Kroeger.
“All officers of the Colorado State Legislative Board have done and outstanding job representing their members political and legislative interests in the state,” President Pierce said. “I congratulate them for winning election by acclamation and I know they have a lot of work to do in the next few weeks leading up to the national elections on November 6.”
Additional BLET guests in attendance included: Sereena Hogan, National Vice President of the BLET Auxiliary; Cory Runion, Wyoming State Legislative Board Chairman; Dave Geisler, Union Pacific-Eastern District General Chairman; and former Colorado State Legislative Board Chairman George Last, Division 940 (Denver) and Mike Weston, Division 186 (Denver).
For the first time, the Colorado State Legislative Board’s quadrennial meeting was a two-day event. The first day was the Board’s regular business session while the second day was an “open forum” meeting for all members in Colorado, which featured speakers from across the state as well as the BLET National Division officers addressing the membership.
Special guests on the second day included: Mike Cerbo, President of the Colorado AFL-CIO; Sal Pace, Representative from Colorado House District 46; John Manutes, Chief Inspector for the Federal Railroad Administration in Colorado; representatives from job insurance associations; and representatives from various legal counsel firms.
Chairman Wilmesher said the two day open forum style was well-received by the membership.
“It was the first time we had attempted this style of meeting with various speakers and question and answer sessions,” Chairman Wilmesher said. “Many said afterwards that it was well done.”
He also said spouses of BLET members were encouraged to attend the open forum, and that an impressive turnout led to discussions of forming a new branch of the Auxiliary in Colorado. Chairman Wilmesher himself is a dues-paying member of the Auxiliary, and encouraged the Legislative Representatives in attendance to explore joining the Auxiliary as a member-at-large.
Chairman Wilmesher expressed his gratitude to those who helped plan the event and thanked everyone who attended.