Jackie Bennet retired from the SMART International Association on February 1, 2023, concluding 36 years of service. A dedicated and passionate employee, Jackie began as a clerk, then supported various departments as a secretary and retired as the assistant office manager. Throughout her career — which began under the Sheet Metal Workers International Association (SMWIA) and continued following the merger of the SMWIA and the United Transportation Union (UTU) that formed SMART — Jackie was a proud union supporter, on and off the job. She plans to spend her retirement at the beach, traveling with her husband, enjoying time with her son, daughter-in-law, grandchildren, nieces and nephews, and rooting for the Washington Commanders. SMART thanks Jackie for her many years of service!
Tragically, SMART lost another dedicated and loyal staff member on February 26, 2023, when Leah Hankins passed away following a battle with metastatic lung cancer. Like Jackie, Leah joined the union’s staff prior to the merger of the SMWIA and UTU, working as an audit clerk/typist in the Membership Department; an accounting clerk in the Membership Department; and finally, an audit specialist in the Membership Department. Leah worked particularly closely with local railroad unions, going above and beyond to support SMART officers and members through thick and thin. A dedicated and loyal employee, she spoke frequently of her husband, Dave, and her sons, Brent and Nathan. SMART continues to mourn Leah’s untimely passing, and staff and members alike send their condolences to Leah’s family.