38. Art Pulaski
Art Pulaski is another familiar name on this list: He’s a major labor leader, the Executive-Secretary Treasurer and Chief Officer of the California Labor Federation, a sort of umbrella group that represents 2.1 million California union members in 1,200 manufacturing, transportation, construction and public sector unions. In recent years, a major target of the Labor Fed has been the gig economy, and it has been fighting efforts by companies to classify employees as independent contractors, a move that Pulaski and other labor leaders say cuts income and cripples job protections. Pulaski has been a union supporter since age 16 when he worked at a supermarket and joined the meat cutters’ union. Since he took office at the California Labor Federation 23 years ago, the group has more than doubled in size. He has led several nonprofits, including the California Works Foundation and the Labor Project for Working Families.
Updated Aug. 11, 2020