MaryBe McMillan is serving her second term as President of the North Carolina State AFL-CIO. With her initial election to this position in 2017, she became the first female president in the history of the organization and, as of October 2021, is one of 16 women leading state AFL-CIO federations in the country. Prior to her election as President, she served 12 years as Secretary-Treasurer—again the first woman to serve in that position.
Before working for the NC State AFL-CIO, she worked for the national AFL-CIO’s Union Community Fund, as Research Director for the Common Sense Foundation, and as State Policy Analyst for the Rural School and Community Trust.
MaryBe grew up in Hickory, North Carolina. She became involved with union organizing as a student and is passionate about organizing workers in the South. MaryBe frequently speaks to groups around the country about the importance of building a strong labor movement in the South.
MaryBe graduated with honors from Wake Forest University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in sociology. She also holds a Master of Arts degree from UNC-Greensboro and a doctorate degree in sociology from NC State University. MaryBe is a member of the International Union of Operating Engineers (IUOE) Local 465 in Durham, North Carolina.