American Postal Workers' Union

Morris "Moe" Biller was born in New York City on November 15, 1915. He attended Brooklyn College and City College and began working in the Postal Service in 1937 as a substitute clerk. Except for wartime service in the military, Biller spent the rest of his life in the Postal Service and as a postal union leader. He held almost every position within his local union (National Federation of Postal Clerks, Local 10) before the local broke away to become the Manhattan-Bronx Postal Workers, a local of the newly formed National Postal Clerks Union. Biller became president of the new local, 25,000 members strong, in 1959 and led the local through the so-called Great Postal Strike of 1970. This national strike lasted eight days and resulted in the Postal Reorganization Act of 1970, creating the U.S. Postal Service and granting its employees collective bargaining rights. In 1971 the National Postal Clerks Union joined with four other postal unions to become the American Postal Workers Union. Biller's local took on its present name, the New York Metro Area Postal Union, in 1973; the new name reflected the inclusion of the New York Bulk and Foreign Mail Center and the North Jersey Facility in the local's bargaining unit.

Biller was elected president of the American Postal Workers Union in 1980, and carried his activist style into this new arena. He was a long-time supporter of the civil rights movement and of women's efforts to advance in the labor movement. He served on the boards of numerous charitable organizations, including the March of Dimes and United Way, and sat on the boards of university labor studies programs at Cornell University and Empire State College. Biller's personal interest in labor history was exemplified in the cooperation he offered to the Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives at New York University, to the Tenement Museum on New York's Lower East Side, and to a number of labor history oral history and film projects. It was with his full and enthusiastic support that Dana Schechter embarked on her project to document the history of the New York Metro Area Postal Union through interviews with and by the local's retirees. On his retirement Biller returned to live in his beloved New York City; he died in New York on September 5, 2003.


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2016-08-17 12:08:38 am

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2016-08-17 12:08:38 am

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