Proudly representing our members for over
The UGSOA International Union was founded by a man named James Vissar who resided in Colorado and worked as a Security Officer at the United States Nuclear Weapons Production Facility better known as “Rocky Flats” where he served as the Local 1 President for many years. He was known as a stubborn, true to life unionist that was commonly described as the kind of guy who would, “Give you the shirt off his back”. Over time, he became increasingly unhappy and frustrated with the level of representation that he was receiving from the International Union that he was affiliated with and began to explore the possibility of finding a new International. It was at this time that he realized there were no other options available to him.
After giving the situation much thought, Vissar came to the conclusion that the problem his members were facing while dealing with their Union was directly linked to two contributing factors: 1.) The people who were assigned to represent his local had little to no hands on experience in the Security Field, and 2.) the International Union had too much control over the individual Local’s affairs.
After much contemplation, review and research, Vissar made the decision to act on his instincts and commitment to his fellow Officers and started the UGSOA International Union in November of 1992 with little to no means and under one hundred members.
The International’s initial Executive Board consisted of three Officials, (James Vissar, President, Danny Chesshir, Senior Vice President and Louis Smith, Secretary-Treasurer). These men worked endless hours for little to no pay, and most of their work was conducted out of Vissar’s home as a way to save resources for representational activities for their members. Their perseverance and tenacious personalities over the next several years prevailed which was evident when it was announced at their first formal Convention in 2000 that the membership had expanded to 3960 members.
Although our Organization was deeply saddened by the loss of Vissar in 2007 after a long fought battle with cancer, UGSOA has remained focused on our initial vision of raising the industry standards for all Security Officers across the Nation.
In 2015, UGSOA held its fifth Convention in Atlantic City, NJ. More than 70 Local Representatives attended and exercised their right to elect nine members to the International Executive Board which is comprised of long standing UGSOA members from all three primary divisions, (CSO, DHS, and NRC).
In 2016, UGSOA moved into a new Headquarters in East Wareham, MA. Our new office positions us for future anticipated growth, while allowing us to be good stewards of our funds.
Over the last 25 years, UGSOA has been able to assist countless members and negotiate contracts with company's all across the country. We have been able to secure better wages, increased benefits, and fairness in the workplace for our more than 12,000 members. This, coupled with over 3 million dollars in awards and more than 30 Officers being returned to work after being terminated by their employers without Just Cause in the last 5 years alone, solidifies our undying commitment to our members that was initiated nearly twenty-five years ago.