Kenneth Cooper, the International President of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW), is the newest member of the MTD Executive Board.
Cooper takes the seat following the retirement of his predecessor, Lonnie Stephenson, who retired after the first of the year.
Starting at IBEW Local 688 in Mansfield, OH, in 1985, Cooper became a journeyman wireman after a four-year apprenticeship program. He served many roles at the local including steward, vice president and president before being elected its business manager in 1993.
At 688, he led a successful organizing campaign at a manufacturing plant that added nearly 200 new members. He also served as vice president of the Richland County AFL-CIO and co-chair of the Richland County Building Trades.
In 2002, he relocated to Las Vegas where he worked for Local 396 as its assistant business manager. He was instrumental in organizing five new units of workers at Nevada Power Company and a new power-generating plant in Apex, NV.
Four years later, Cooper came back east to become international representative for the IBEW’s Fourth District and moved up to the district’s vice president in 2011. In 2017, under his leadership, the IBEW finally organized more than 1400 members working at Baltimore Gas and Electric.
In May 2017, Stephenson picked Cooper to be the union’s Secretary-Treasurer. IBEW convention delegates elected him to a full term in 2022.
He was appointed IBEW International President in January 2023. He and his wife, Gina, have five children.