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    "The fight is never about grapes or lettuce. It is always about people."
    Cesar Chavez




    :: Thursday, December 04, 2008 ::

    Carpenters Union leaders shaft members? - By Carol Marin, CHICAGO SUN-TIMES
    When it comes to union clout and political muscle, it's hard to beat the Carpenters.

    But Mike Prate may have done exactly that -- to the tune of $10 million.

    Prate, who spent his childhood in an orphanage and foster homes, learned early to be tough. At 20, he was shingling roofs. By 1972, he opened a roofing company, Prate Installations, in Wauconda. By 2002, he had $30 million in annual revenue.

    But then came the war with the Carpenters Union.

    'I'm not anti-union,' Prate said Tuesday, 'I work with four unions every day.'
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