George Galis was born and raised in the union steel mill town of Monessen, Pennsylvania. He began working for his father’s company, Galis Painting, at age 12. He continued to work as an industrial and commercial painter through high school and eventually joined IUPAT Local Union 327 at age 16. He continued to work as a painter through college and after college.
In 1978, Mr. Galis received his B.A. from California University of Pennsylvania, with a degree in Political Science. He continued his career as a painter until 1983 when he was appointed as an organizer for Local Union 6 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
In 1986, Mr. Galis was elected business manager/financial secretary of Local Union 6 and served in that capacity until being appointed as a general representative for the IUPAT in 1993. Mr. Galis served as an IUPAT representative until 2002 when he began serving as General Secretary-Treasurer. He was unanimously elected at the 2004 General Convention.
As business manager/financial secretary of Local Union 6, Mr. Galis improved the local union by restoring it financially and making it a viable part of the Western Pennsylvania labor movement. He settled 3 collective bargaining agreements with the Western PA employers that included wage and benefit increases and stronger contract language, and did this while avoiding strikes for the first time in 30 years. He also implemented the first market recovery agreement to recapture lost markets.
As a general representative, Mr. Galis was among the first IUPAT COMET teachers, personally teaching over 150 COMET classes. He was instrumental in the formation and full affiliation of 3 district councils. He also ran several successful organizing campaigns and led a team of representatives in the Eastern Region in a program called Union Building 96, which laid the foundation for organizing structure and tactics in our district councils.
As General Secretary-Treasurer, aside from his constitutional duties, Mr. Galis has served as a trustee for the FTI, and the IUPAT Pension Fund. He was instrumental in the creation of the Collective Bargaining Agreement Guidebook, which serves as a model for many IUPAT Collective Bargaining Agreements. He authored the Top Workplace Performance Plan, which serves as an organizing tool and ensures IUPAT members are the best in the industry. He also led the way in developing and running the IUPAT leadership series, which trains new IUPAT leaders.
During his career, Mr. Galis graduated from the Harvard University Trade Union Program and received a Bachelor’s Degree from the National Labor College.
Mr. Galis and his wife Dana have been married since 1988. They have two sons, Emilio and Zachary.