Inducted in 1992
editor, AFL-CIO News
Perhaps more than anyone else, labor journalist Ted Ogar helped build the Michigan labor press into a respected and influential voice on behalf of the state’s labor unions. As editor of the Michigan AFL-CIO News, he took a nearly defunct paper and built it into a major labor publication with close to a quarter-million subscribers. A key to the paper’s success was a redesign that allowed local unions to insert their own copy to create their own editions, a boon to small unions that couldn’t afford their own paper. Ogar’s efforts on behalf of the labor press went beyond the publications he worked on. Under his leadership, the News began a news service to other union papers in the state and sponsored the Michigan CIO Labor Press Council. He was a founder of what is know known as the International Labor Communications Association, and he also shaped the careers of others by teaching journalism classes in various labor education programs. He also wrote scripts and did commentary for a number of labor radio programs and made frequent televisions appearances as well. His sense of humor earned him a reputation as “a first-rate satirist,” but it was his candor that earned him respect. “Ted Ogar epitomized integrity,” said former Detroit Free Press managing editor Frank Angelo. “He set the standard by which others who followed him into the labor newspaper field would operate.” Ogar died in 1976.