LIUNA backs Jim McGreevey for Jersey City mayor on the steps of City Hall


The Laborers International Union of North America (LIUNA) endorsed former Gov. Jim McGreevey in the 2025 Jersey City mayoral race on the steps of City Hall this morning.

By Daniel Ulloa/Hudson County View

“LIUNA’s early and enthusiastic endorsement demonstrates the union’s steadfast belief that Jim McGreevy is the right type of leader to build a Jersey City that works for ALL residents,” said LIUNA Vice President and Eastern Regional Manager Michael Hellstrom said.

“It is a privilege to stand shoulder to shoulder with the hardworking men and women of LIUNA, and I am proud to earn their support. The Jersey City we will build together will be affordable and welcoming to working people, where everyone can achieve opportunity and prosperity for themselves and their families,” McGreevey.

Also a former state senator, state assemblyman, and mayor of Woodbridge, McGreevey formally launched his campaign on November 9th and received the endorsement of Hudson County Executive-elect Craig Guy last week.

Assistant Regional Manager for the LIUNA Eastern Region Bernard Callegari said he is someone who has been the beneficiary of second chances in his life.

“I met Governor McGreevey a year ago and understood the great work he is doing with the reentry program. There was an instant connection,” he explained.

Callegari also noted they’re working with them to provide middle-class union jobs to the formerly incarcerated looking to start over through McGreevey’s NJ Reentry Corporation.

“We have to have one city that’s equitable for every single resident of Jersey City. We can’t just allow developers to develop in input and unrestricted. They have to have guard rails,” added Hellstrom.

“They have to make sure they’re providing good paying jobs to local Jersey City residents. With Jim McGreevey as the next mayor, we’ll have a partner who understands our language.”

McGreevey noted a few union members present went through his reentry program.

“This guy right here and this union gave me an opportunity. He helped me navigate to this place,” Mike Powell stated.

McGreevey also discussed the LIUNA Pathway to Apprenticeship Program (P2A), which helps people eventually get good paying jobs.

“Instead of working in a warehouse for 30,60, 90 days when they’d be fired on the 90th day and have no health benefits, now they’re about to launch into a career that will change the trajectory of their lives,” McGreevey explained.

“That promise of the American dream still eludes so many individuals.”

Hellstrom also commended McGreevey for deciding to do good after he resigned as governor under a dark cloud in 2004, noting that he could have eventually become a lobbyist or political consultant who made a lot of money.

“Society is not getting easier. Society is getting harder. And we’re gonna need a man like Jim with his leadership, his vision, and his conviction to what’s morally correct to lead this city forward,” he added.

“All too often, I’ve been in conversations with folks that are discussing the future of cities, cities like Jersey City. And everybody’s in the room except the workers. We know come election time that conversation is going to change. Labor is going to have a seat at the table. Developers do not build Jersey City. We build Jersey City!” Callegari interjected.

McGreevey said noted many construction sites in the city are non-union, something he would change, as well as designating sites for affordable housing.

“Designate sites for affordable housing and provide for incentives. The Laborers have actually done that for workforce housing,” he explained.

“ … There are projects around the nation that the Laborers have done with workforce housing that specifically focus on affordable housing.”

Afterwards, McGreevey told HCV that he would work with labor unions along with developers on new projects with affordable housing.

“For many families, by virtue of property taxes, they’re being driven from their homes. Workforce housing has to be the next generation of development in the community, particularly Lafayette and Greenville,” McGreevey said, noting they would work to provide financing for the projects.

“We need to get this, or else families that have been here generationally will tragically be compelled to leave.”

Hudson County Commissioner Bill O’Dea (D-2), the other declared candidate for the non-partisan November 4th, 2025 contest, chided McGreevey online over an alleged $25 stipend being offered to union workers to attend the rally.

“Throwback Tuesday: this past August with @LIUNA Local 3 Union in the Puerto Rican Day Parade. Not one #stipend was offered that day!” he wrote from his mayoral Twitter account.

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