Lionel Dorais, right, at the Teamsters Canada Convention in the '90s.
Lionel Dorais, right, at the Teamsters Canada Convention in the '90s.

I was saddened to learn today that Brother Lionel Dorais, President of Local Union 1999 from 2000 to 2004, has passed away. He was 81 years old.

Lionel began his career at the Labatt bottling plant in Montreal in the 1960s and then moved on to delivery. Involved in defending workers, he became a shop steward at his plant a little later.

In the early 1970s, his local union, which was part of another union, merged with the Teamsters Union. He quickly became a business agent of Local Union 1999 and rose through the ranks to become president of the largest Teamsters local union in Canada.

I met Lionel in the 1980s, when I joined Teamsters Canada, and I saw him negotiate many collective agreements. He was also involved in various union battles throughout his career.

My thoughts are with his wife, Françoise, as well as his children, parents and friends. He will have been a valued colleague who made a significant impact in the lives of hundreds of union members.

Thank you for everything, Lionel.

François Laporte
President of Teamsters Canada
International Vice-President