Sara Lonardo, Sara.Lonardo@seiu.org,
Issued July 12, 2019
I am deeply saddened by the sudden passing of SEIU 32BJ president Hector Figueroa. Hector was an inspiring leader who fought every day to help working men and women join together for better jobs and stronger communities.
It is impossible to overstate the loss of Hector to our SEIU family. Hector has made a lasting impact on the heart and soul of our union, and he will be sorely missed.
Hector’s leadership made it possible for janitors, doormen (and women), security officers, airport workers and so many other working people across the U.S. and Puerto Rico to join together and lift up their wages and improve their jobs.
We will all take time in our union over the next few days to share memories of how his leadership challenged us all to be our best selves. I benefited greatly from Hector’s full-throated determination to build workers’ power. He was a powerful leader, a giant intellect, and a fierce fighter for justice with enormous compassion and empathy. I could always count on Hector for his sharp insights and his candor. I have treasured my partnership with Hector, which was built around our shared vision and values.
My heart goes out to his family—his wife Deidre, his son Eric and his daughter Elena. There was never a time in my interaction with Hector where he didn’t take time to express pride in his son’s school achievements, his daughter’s dance performances and his wife’s shared commitment to justice.
Together we will grieve his loss and together we will recommit ourselves to keep up the fight for working people that Hector dedicated his life to.