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October 2015

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Leo T. Kabatt

The IBEW regrets to report that former Pension and Death Claims Department Director Leo Kabatt died on Aug. 6. He was 70.

A native of Pennsylvania, Brother Kabatt was initiated in 1967 as a member of Norristown, Pa., Local 380. He worked as a journeyman inside wireman for numerous contractors in the Philadelphia area and was active in the COPE committee and other local union activities. Prior to that, he served in the Air Force from 1962-1966 as an electronics technician stationed at Westover Air Force Base in Massachusetts.

After attending night school, Kabatt received a Bachelor of Science from Villanova University. In 1979 he was appointed international representative and worked at the International Office in the Pension and Death Claims Department. In 1982, he was appointed director of the Purchasing and Office Supplies Department. Among his many duties was setting up displays at labor union shows. Five years later he returned to the Pension and Death Claims Department as director.

In addition, he worked for 12 years assisting directors of the Council on Industrial Relations on facilitating cooperative labor relations.

"He was an energetic person," said Dale Dunlop, former executive assistant. That sentiment was echoed by Mark Evert, a long-time friend and former executive assistant to International Secretary Jack Moore. "He was a busy guy. And he did a bang-up job."

Evert also said the work Kabatt cherished most was helping retirees and their families.

"He was particularly sensitive to that. He never wanted to make any mistakes," Evert said, noting that Kabatt often said that for many retirees, it was their first encounter with the International Office and the least he could do was make sure their experience was a positive one. "The IBEW could do worse than getting more men like Leo."

Kabatt retired in March 2003, after 35 years with the Brotherhood. In recent years, he enjoyed playing golf, remodeling his home, talking politics and walking his dog Barney.

Brother Kabatt is survived by his wife, Alice, and four sons, Paul, Philip, Michael and Gregory, and four grandchildren. His oldest son, Paul, is an inside wireman and member of Local 380. Brother Kabatt was always proud to report that all four of his sons served in the U.S. Marine Corps.

On behalf of the entire IBEW membership and staff, the officers send our condolences to Brother Kabatt's family and friends.


Leo T. Kabatt