About Us

Executive Offices

Matt-Utecht.jpgMatthew P. Utecht

My grocery career began in 1979 when I started working for Hauser Supervalu in Prior Lake, MN. In 1983 I served on the Minneapolis Retail Meat and Grocery negotiating committee which was an eye-opening experience -- to see the high level of dedication and commitment by Local 653 towards its membership. In June of 1983 I was selected as a delegate to the UFCW International Convention in Montreal.

Throughout my career I have served in many different capacities for Local 653. On September 1, 1983, I became a Business Representative, later Director of Organizing, and on March 1, 2013, became President of Local 653 and Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Minneapolis Retail Meat Cutters & Food Handlers Health & Welfare and Pension Funds. I also serve on the UFCW Region 6 Council. In November 2014, I was elected Executive Board Member of the Minnesota State AFL-CIO.

There are two things in my life that I am totally committed to. First is my wife of 22 years—Jill—and our three children. Second is my job as President of Local 653, representing over 10,000 members and their families. At Local 653 we continue on a daily basis to strive toward a better quality of life for our membership and continue the highest level of dedication and commitment to all those we represent.

I’ve seen many changes over my 30+ years working for Local 653, some good and some not so good. My promise to the membership of this union is to continue to give you everything I’ve got, every day, and, with the support of a great staff, Executive Board, and a strong active membership, to leave this union bigger, better, and stronger than I found it!

Paul-Crandall.jpgPaul Crandall
I joined Local 653 as a member in 1977 when working for Byerly’s in Golden Valley and then transferred to St. Louis Park when that store opened in 1980. I started attending union meetings with coworkers who took an active role in union membership, and to them I am thankful. In 1983, I served on the union contract negotiating committee. In June 1983, I was picked as a delegate to the UFCW International Convention in Montreal. In June 1984 I joined the staff of Local 653 as a union representative, and since then, time has flown by with the many changes in the industry and the opportunity to service a diverse section of members covered under union contracts—from the old Red Owl meat center plant, small meat shops, conventional and super size warehouse grocery stores, to Snyder Drug stores. Each unit has one thing in common—rank and file members who I enjoy representing, taking pride in Local 653’s past and having faith in our future.

In March 2007 I was appointed as a trustee to the Health & Welfare and Pension Funds of Local 653, and I have enjoyed working with labor and management trustees who govern the Funds.

I enjoy spending time with my wife and five children and taking an active role in their activities.

UFCW Local 653-I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for the circus tickets. It was a generous gift and much appreciated. It was a great time, and fun to be with my grandchildren. They enjoyed being greeted by Wally the Clown, the coloring bo… - Mary