ERC Founder, Board Secretary
Peter Zschiesche has a long history in the local Labor Movement and is completing his 8th year as an elected Trustee of the San Diego Community College District, representing the urban core neighborhoods of District E just east and south of downtown. He currently serves as Executive Vice President of the Board for the SDCCD and focuses on connecting the District’s educational resources to community-based development. He also represented Labor for many years on the local Workforce Investment Board.
Mr. Zschiesche is Founder of the Employee Rights Center, a non-profit program of Labor’s Community Alliance, a local non-profit 501c3 organization, which provides all workers, especially disadvantaged and unrepresented workers, education and advocacy regarding workplace issues. These issues include unpaid wages, unemployment insurance, unsafe working conditions, workers compensation & state disability insurance, family medical leave, informal grievances, unfair labor practices and immigration status. The Center is a founding member of the local Immigration Rights Consortium and is closely allied with the San Diego-Imperial Counties Labor Council.
Peter was the immediate past (2000-2006) President of Machinist Union Local 389 in San Diego California, which represents thousands of workers in heavy manufacturing, including shipyard workers at National Steel & Shipbuilding Company (NASSCO) and others at Solar Turbines. Peter worked at NASSCO as a journeyman machinist (1981-1986) and then was elected Machinist Union representative (1986-1996) for District 50. In that capacity he practiced labor and employment law using a variety of administrative law procedures and direct actions. He also served as Chief Negotiator for the 7 shipyard unions for those ten years, and was very active in worker safety and health issues there.
Peter has a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Bucknell University and an M.B.A from the University of Michigan. He served as an U.S. Army officer from 1967-1969 in Korea and Vietnam. He has earned a number of awards, including “Labor Leader of the Year” from the Labor Council, the “Voice of Labor” award from the Interfaith Committee for Worker Justice in San Diego, “Visionary Award” in 2009 from the local Cesar E. Chavez Commemoration Committee, and community service awards from the Barrio Station and the Latina/Latino Unity Coalition. Peter is married to Pam Clark, a local school teacher.