Rebranding a Labor Union

SEIU, or Service Employees International Union, is a national labor union representing over 1.9 million private and public sector workers in the United States and Canada. SEIU Local 99, like many other SEIU locals, employed a logo that attempted to bring all locals under a unified brand with the once-ubiquitous ‘swoosh’ graphic. Who knew what that was all about – a boomerang of union power with an explosive 1960’s Batman ‘wham-pow’ to close the deal? Whatever the case, by the time I came on board, the logo had become widely-panned as dated and corporate-looking. I took a cue from my fellow design comrades daring, bold and persuasive enough to break away with the SEIU brand to create identities more reflective of their member’s aspirations, and unique industries.


One of the primary functions of a labor union is to organize and unite workers around shared issues. But, in order to succeed at this task, workers—whether driving a school bus or preparing and serving lunch—must have a shared identity. I didn’t come up with “education workers united”, but I unburied it. It was clear and identifiable to workers, and an idea worth uniting around. I honored the old colors, but recognized that the LA Lakers have the bigger claim to purple and gold. My goal here was to create a logo that was modern, fresh, forward-looking, and would look and read great at all sizes. Slide the green circle to see the old and the new.

Old logoNew logo