John Doherty

Senior Advisor to the General President

International Union of Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT)

John Doherty is a third-generation member of the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades. Growing up in the Dorchester neighborhood of Boston, a melting pot of diversity gave John the opportunity to experience and share the many perspectives and challenges that workers from a multitude of cultural backgrounds face in the workforce.

John began his career as an industrial and commercial painter apprentice in 1994 and as a member of IUPAT District Council 35, Local 939. It was during those next 15 years of plying the craft experience gained as a journeyman and shared struggle with his siblings in the trade, that his union experience encouraged him to pursue a role in organizing for social and economic justice.

In 2009, John was appointed by the local IUPAT District Council affiliate in Boston to an organizing, research, and communications role. After leading an effort to stop the privatization of the Massachusetts mass transit system John was elevated to the role of Organizing Director, as well as coordinating IUPAT’s political advocacy efforts within the city of Boston. John gravitated bridging toward what he saw as a communications gap and quickly sought to establish strong relationships with developers, contractors, and connect the communities in which the IUPAT was building opportunities.

In 2015, in partnership with his former alma mater, Madison Park High School, John formed an articulated finishing trades program for inner-city students that allowed for direct entry into the IUPAT apprenticeship program upon graduation. He views these programs as the key to providing sustainable careers in underserved communities on a national level.

In 2017, Mr. Doherty was appointed to an international role in the position of IUPAT Communications Director. His mission in that role was and remains, to ensure that as a movement, and as a union, our public and member communications continually become stronger across all platforms and that we share our vision of collective strength through the personal stories of the workers who share our struggle.

John now sits on various climate adjacent advisory boards and steering committees including the U.S. Water Alliance Climate Jobs National Resource Center, the Emerald Cities Collaborative, and the BlueGreen Alliance to advance and promote clean, sustainable jobs in the new green economy.

Currently, Mr. Doherty serves in the role of Senior Advisor to IUPAT General President, Jim Williams Jr., where he advises the IUPAT on matters of climate, energy, and infrastructure. He views this role through the lens of equity and continues to fight for climate, social, and economic justice in the workplace and the communities in which we thrive.

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