Henry Haba, LU 30 • 75-year member
Henry Haba’s passion for quality tools can be seen in his vast collection. Over the course of his career as a Union Carpenter, he has assembled hundreds of tools both modern and vintage. When he retired in the 1980s, Henry began giving tools away as part of the monthly apprentice raffle at then Local Union 131 in Seattle. When the local unions were merged, Henry continued the tradition.
How long have you been in the union?
I am 96 years old and have about 75 years in the union.
How did you get into the industry?
At the age of 23, I was too old to get into the apprenticeship so I went to a trade school in Yakima and entered the Carpenters Union that way.
Do you have any favorite projects from over the years?
I was able to run very big jobs and work in amazing places like Hanford, building part of a nuclear reactor, I built the first floating bridge which goes down in history and many, many other projects.
How has being a part of a union made a difference in your life?
The steady employment, training, and ability to make really good money.
Have you had mentors in your career? Have you been a mentor?
Growing up on a farm with fifteen siblings, my brothers were my mentors and taught me a lot.
Do you have advice for those starting out in their career?
Listen to your coworkers and make sure that you buy quality tools.
Thank you to Andrew Gocus, LU 30, who helped us capture this story.