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SEIU Local 1199 gets new leader

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The Service Employees International Union has named Tyrek Lee Sr., a former hospital switchboard operator, as the top official of its health care workers union in Massachusetts.

Lee, 38, is the new executive vice president of the SEIU's Local 1199, which includes 52,000 health care workers. He replaces Veronica Turner, who moved to the national office.

Lee has been a key promoter of the national movement to raise starting wages to $15 an hour. Lee said he wants to increase the union's membership.

Lee joined the union more than a decade ago when he was at Boston Medical Center. He also worked at Mass. General and Brigham and Women's Hospital.


Priyanka Dayal McCluskey can be reached at priyanka.mccluskey@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @priyanka_dayal.