Arizona Building and Construction Trades Council


When IBEW 518 State Organizer Robert Sample learned about the coronavirus-induced struggles on the Navajo Nation, he turned to Local 518 Business Manager Dominic Marcanti to help organize a food drive.

Marcanti approached fellow business managers at the Arizona State Association of Electrical Workers (ASAEW), which includes IBEW Locals 518, 640, 570, 1116, 769, 387 and 266. The union leaders agreed to approach members for donations of food, water and money. The AZ AFL-CIO and UFCW boosted efforts by chipping in monetary donations and about 2,500 “Union Yes” cloth masks.

On July 29, they delivered more than $40,000 in donations with the help of Safeway Stores, which matched half the water donations and lent the union leaders a semi truck to deliver the goods to the Navajo People in Window Rock.

IBEW representatives 518 Business Manager Domenic Marcanti, 518 Organizer John Sorenson, 518 Retired Member John Babich, 640 Organizer Phillip Aguayo, 640 Member Fred Cooke, 611 Organizer Benson Bitsui, and 611 Member Westin Yazzie were joined by AFL-CIO Executive Director Fred Yamashita and representatives from the UFCW and Safeway when they presented the goods to Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez to share with the Navajo People. President Nez was very grateful for the efforts made by the Union, referring to them all as  “Friends of the Navajo People.”

Marcanti expressed his appreciation for the opportunity to assist Navajo Brothers and Sisters and their families and thanked IBEW members and business managers whose enthusiasm made the effort a huge success.

“I believe this is just another good example of what can be accomplished by the Unions when we all come together and act as one,” said Marcanti.
Navajo Nation Donation Drive Organizers
Thank you to Safeway for matching donations and helping transport items to the Navajo Nation