1940s

May 22, 1942
By 1942, with 700,000 members in Canada and the U.S., SWOC was ready to become an autonomous, international union. Delegates attended a SWOC convention in Cleveland to create the United Steelworkers of America. The USW adopted its own constitution, created geographic districts, and elected its own officers including Philip Murray as President and Charles Millard as Canadian Director.

June, 1942
"Our fundamental goals today are no different than they were in 1936 and 1942 – to improve the working and personal lives of our members and to bring these improvements to the total society – today, tomorrow, next year, next century." Lynn Williams, USW International President Emeritus, at the USW's 50th anniversary in 1992. Williams was one of the first staff representatives in Canada.

February 13, 1945
USWA holds first secret-ballot referendum for international officers, district directors, and national director for Canada. Charlie Millard elected as our first Director.

October 2, 1946
Steelworkers in Hamilton, Ontario, win historic strike for union recognition at Steel Company of Canada (later Stelco), using solidarity, organization, and political and com­munity support to overcome more than 1,000 company scabs and firmly establish the USWA as the predominant union in Hamilton.