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ALPA Miami EAL MEC Records Edit


Finding Aid Author
Processed by Maxfield Stepaniak.
Finding Aid Date
Description Rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of Description


  • 1960 – 1991 (Creation)
  • 1985 – 1990 (Creation)


  • 77.5 Linear Feet (Whole)
    (76 SB, 3 MB)

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  • Language of Materials

    Material entirely in English.

  • Abstract

    Parts 1 and 2 of the EAL MEC Records spans 30 years but focuses mainly on the last decade of Eastern’s operations. Major subjects include mergers, air safety and bankruptcy litigation.

  • Acquisition

    ALPA Miami EAL-MEC Records are made up of various shipments from 1971-1995.

  • Processing History

    Part 1:

    Processed and finding aid written by Max Maxfield Stepaniak on July 6, 2011.

    Part 2:

    Processed and finding aid written by Kathy Makas on January 23, 2014.

  • Access

    Collection is open for research.

  • Use

    Refer to the Walter P. Reuther Library Rules for Use of Archival Materials.

  • Citation Style

    "ALPA Miami EAL MEC Records, Box [#], Folder [#], Walter P. Reuther Library, Archives of Labor and Urban Affairs, Wayne State University"

  • Related Materials

    For additional material on the 1989 strike see ALPA Herndon EAL Strike Center Records.

  • Separated Materials

    Part II: Photographic negatives and slides (Box 77), audio cassettes (Box 78) and video cassettes (Box 79) have been moved to the Reuther’s Audiovisual Department.

  • History

    Each airline in ALPA is represented by a Master Executive Council (MEC), this council is made up of representatives from Local Executive Councils (LEC) which are located at each of the airline’s hubs. Through ALPA, and in compliance with the constitution and by-laws, the MEC is the administrative and decision making body for ALPA on their airline. Through its committees, the MEC negotiates contracts with the airline, processes grievances and legal action, ensures airline compliance with safety measures and regulations, as well oversees retirement issues, strikes, assessments, training, mergers, and any other pilot issues. Each MEC is headed by an elected chairman, vice-chairman, and secretary/treasurer. The Eastern Airlines (EAL) MEC was located in Miami and served EAL pilots from the beginning of ALPA until Eastern ceased operations in 1991.

    The 1980s was a period of much strife for EAL, labor management relations were poor and each side became more hardened towards the other as the decade progressed, eventually leading to the 1989 ALPA sympathy strike of EAL.

    During that decade the MEC set up programs to protect their pilots, such as Max Safety, which sought to bring the poor safety conditions, pencil whipping, and violations of FAA regulations under which they were being forced to fly to public attention. Because of the efforts of Max Safety these issues came under public scrutiny and put Eastern under an FAA investigation. When the MEC voted to honor the IAM strike in 1989, it initiated observation, tracking, picketing, and family awareness programs and successfully petitioned ALPA national for an association-wide assessment for strike benefits to support their pilots. The MEC also pursued litigation, worked with potential buyers, and participated in cross-union solutions to the problem of ownership of EAL during bankruptcy. After the strike was ended, the MEC negotiated for back to work arrangements for the few jobs that remained on the downsized carrier, and continuing training for out of work pilots. EAL ceased operations in January of 1991, and the MEC stopped functioning at the end of that year after instituting merger and fragmentation policies to ensure as many pilots as possible had airline work.

  • Scope and Content

    Part I: Part 1 of this collection focuses mainly on Eastern Air Lines (EAL) and its Master Executive Council (MEC) and involve correspondence, resolutions and reports. Continental Airlines (CAL) and the Texas Air Corporation, which was an airline holding company, also contain large amounts of material in the form of correspondence and general information as well. Major general subjects throughout the collection consist of safety, strikes, mergers and pilots.

    Important subjects: Air Safety Bankruptcy Continental Airlines (CAL) Contracts Day Files Department of Transportation (DOT) Eastern Air Lines (EAL) Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Family Awareness Master Executive Council (MEC) Media Mergers Orion Air Pierrs Pilots Resignations Safety Strikes Texas Air Corporation (TAC)

    Important correspondents: Bavis, Jack; Brock, William; Duffy, Henry; Jackson, Jerry

    Part II: Part 2 of the EAL MEC Records contains meeting minutes, correspondence, general files, committee files, and alphabetical files for the office. Most of the material spans the tenures of the last two chairmen to serve Eastern, Jack Bavis (1986-1989) and Skip Copeland (1989-1991). MEC meetings are documented through agendas, minutes, and resolutions from 1976-1991. Projects the MEC focused on can be seen in the committee and alphabetical files. The 1989 sympathy strike is covered through correspondence, faxes, articles, subject files, and bankruptcy litigation.

    Important subjects: Air safety Airline pilots Airlines Collective bargaining Airlines—Employees—Labor unions Airlines—Mergers Airlines—Safety measures Airlines—Safety regulations Airlines—Strikes and lockouts Airlines—United States—Management Airplanes—Piloting—Safety measures Continental Airlines Eastern Airlines Federal Aviation Administration Flight attendants—Labor unions—United States International Association of Machinists National Mediation Board (U. S.) Pilots and pilotage Sympathy strike Texas Air Corporation Union busting Important correspondents: Anderson, Lloyd; Baldwin, Lew; Bakes, Phillip; Bavis, Jack; Borman, Frank; Breen, E.J.; Copeland, Skip; Gallo, Al; Gorse, Augie; Leob, Jerry; Lorenzo, Frank; McClure, Don; McMullen, R. L.; Moldenhauer, Buster; Petachenko, Greg; Schulte, Larry; Stickeney, Ron; Vician, Dan; Wells, Larry; Wright, Buzz

    Series Description: Series 1: Master Executive Council (includes Minutes, Resolutions and Agendas, General Files, and Correspondence), 1976-1991 Series 2: Committees, 1971-1990 Series 3: Alphabetical Files, 1962-1991 Series 4: Audio Visual, 1986-1990

  • Arrangement

    Part I: The folders in this collection are arranged alphabetically and then by date.

    Part II: Arranged in 4 series - Series 1 (Boxes 1-47), Series 2 (Boxes 47-56), Series 3 (Boxes 56-75), and Series 4 (Boxes 76-79).

    Material in this collection has been arranged by series ONLY. Folders are not arranged within each series – we have provided an inventory based on their original order. Subjects may be dispersed throughout several boxes within any given series.

    Series 1: Master Executive Council (includes Minutes, Resolutions and Agendas, General Files, and Correspondence), 1976-1991 (Boxes 1-47),

    Series 2: Committees, 1971-1990 (Boxes 47-56),

    Series 3: Alphabetical Files, 1962-1991 (Boxes 56-75),

    Series 4: Audio Visual, 1986-1990 (Boxes 76-79)