The Maritime Trades Department, AFL-CIO is saddened by the loss of the longtime President of the Maritime Port Council of Greater Boston and New England Area, Gerard Dhooge.
The Massachusetts native succumbed to cancer on April 22. He was 68 years old.
Dhooge had served as a PMC officer since 1996 when he was elected its Secretary-Treasurer. Four years later, he moved up to President and had held that position ever since.
His maritime career began in 1985 when he became a field representative for the Seafarers International Union for the Boston/New England area. Except for a two-and-a-half-year period in the mid-1990s when he worked for then-Congressman Gerry Studds (D-MA), Dhooge was associated with the SIU as a field rep, port agent and consultant.
Since the 2000s, Dhooge was a behind-the-scenes force in directing Labor to a new idea for energy development – offshore windfarms. Under his leadership, the Port Council worked with Massachusetts and New England Building Trades unions to make sure this new technology would carry the union label.
“I have known and worked with Gerard since I first came to the Seafarers as a field rep in 1987,” recalled Daniel Duncan, who recently retired as the MTD Executive Secretary-Treasurer. “He was a strong, dedicated union fighter. He also had a wonderful personality that included everyone who came into his sphere. He will be missed.”
Dhooge and his wife of 43 years, Patricia, have two children and a granddaughter. He graduated with a B.A. from Boston State College.