77th AFT Michigan Convention Summary
Our 77th Convention was held virtually on May 21, 2022. 141 delegates from 33 locals, along with many guests, participated. Highlights included:
- Honoring great people and organizations with awards, including:
- The John McDonald Union-Building Award was presented to John’s local, the Henry Ford Community College Federation of Teachers #1650.
- The inaugural E’Lois Moore-Michele Artt Retiree Activist Award was presented to E’Lois Moore (Detroit Association of Educational Office Employees) and Michele Artt (Detroit Federation of Teachers), longtime union leaders who have led amazing “second careers” as community activists after retirement.
- The Walter Bergman Human Rights Award was presented to the Student Advocacy Center of Michigan in recognition of their work to ensure “every student in school, supported and engaged” since 1975.
- A powerful speech by Anell Eccleston of the Student Advocacy Center calling us to action to create the conditions for every student to succeed.
- Delegates discussing and voting on important constitutional amendments and resolutions, including taking action to encourage their State legislators to help create a support staff to teacher career ladder in this year’s budget.
- Electing officers to lead the state federation for the next two years.
- Celebrating the members of new bargaining units who have organized since our last Convention, including:
- Physician Assistants at UM
- Librarians, Archivists and Curators at UM
- Support Staff at Huron School District
- Paras in Crestwood
- English Language Facilitators at Wayne RESA
- Media Techs in Lake Shore
- Honoring seven great worksite leaders with the Building the Frontlines Award:
- Myra Barnett, Hamtramck Federation of Teachers
- Stasi Earl, Roseville Federation of Teachers
- Rebecca Fitzpatrick, Macomb Intermediate Federation of Teachers
- Samson Kobbah, WCCC Professional & Administrative Association
- Tish Sheats, Lake Shore Federation of Teachers
- Alex Tiefel, United Physician Assistants of Michigan Medicine
- Anke Wolbert, Eastern Michigan University Federation of Teachers
- Recognizing eight locals leading the way in PAC fundraising:
- UM Lecturers Employee Organization #6244
- Hamtramck Federation of Teachers #1052
- Dearborn Federation of Teachers #681
- Macomb ISD Federation of Paras #6216
- Detroit Federation of Teachers #231
- Henry Ford CC Federation of Teachers #1650
- Detroit Federation of Paras #2350
- Wayne County Community College Fed of Teachers #2000
- Words of encouragement from Governor Gretchen Whitmer and AFT President Randi Weingarten.
- Last but not least, honoring our outgoing Secretary-Treasurer, Edna Reaves for her many years of service to AFT Michigan, DFT 231, and the entire labor movement.
Delegates approved resolutions on the following topics:
- Building Reliable, Gainful employment in Higher Education
- Physician Assistants and Expanding Access to Mental Health Care
- In Support of Black Farmers
- Teacher and School Staff shortage
- Building a Support Staff to Teacher Career Ladder to Strengthen Our School Communities
- Walter Bergman Human Rights Award – Student Advocacy Center of Michigan
- Creating a “Cradle-through-College Pipeline” that Helps All Students Succeed
- Language In Use With, For, and About Union Members Regarding Gender and Sexual Identity
- Green Schools for Safe & Healthy Communities
Delegates approved the proposed amendments to the Constitution, which included a dues increase of 33 cents/month for full dues-payers in September 2022 and 20 cents/month for full dues-payers in September 2023–with pro-rated increases for other categories.
Delegates elected the 2022-2024 AFT Michigan Administrative Board:
PRESIDENT and SECRETARY – TREASURER
David Hecker, Lamphere Teachers #1614 Terrence Martin, Detroit Teachers #231
VICE PRESIDENT – GENERAL
Danielle Aubert, WSU AAUP AFT 6075
Kate Birdsall, MSU UNTF #1855
Eva Coleman, Michigan ACTS #6482
Kirsten Herold, UM LEO #6244
Megan Hohensee, Warren Woods Paras #4706
Jane Mazza, Dearborn Teachers #681
Sarah Niemi, Detroit Teachers #231
Linda Moore, Taylor Teachers #1085
Christian Nwamba, WCCC Teachers #2000
Lincoln Stocks, Eastpointe Educators #698
Marcus Walton, Detroit Teachers #231
Lakia Wilson-Lumpkins, Detroit Teachers #231
VICE PRESIDENT – GRADUATE EMPLOYEES: Alex Aaring, MSU GEU #6196
VICE PRESIDENT – HEALTH CARE: Jill Hasen, UPAMM #5297
VICE PRESIDENT – INTERMEDIATE SCHOOL DISTRICT: Jacqueline Goosen, Macomb ISD Teachers #2144
VICE PRESIDENT – NON TENURE-TRACK FACULTY: Daric Thorne, EMU Teachers #9102
VICE PRESIDENT – OUT-STATE LOCAL: Jasmine Labine, WMU PIO #1903
VICE PRESIDENT – PARAPROFESSIONALS & SCHOOL RELATED PERSONNEL: Donna Jackson, Detroit Paras #2350
VICE PRESIDENT – PREK-12 TEACHERS: Toni Coral, Hamtramck Teachers #1052
VICE PRESIDENT – RETIREES: Marina Russo, Eastpointe Educators #698R
VICE PRESIDENT – TENURE-TRACK FACULTY & STAFF: Eric Rader, HFCC Teachers #1650
A big thank you to our staff and all those who served on committees to make our 77th Convention such a success!
Rader Serves on UNESCO International Academic Freedom Panel
Henry Ford CC Federation of Teachers Local 1650 President Eric Rader recently participated in a panel on academic freedom sponsored by Education International as part of UNESCO’s World Higher Education Conference. The virtual session featured panelists from different parts of the world, including Senegal, Colombia, Romania, Canada, and the United States. In his presentation, Eric emphasized several ways to enhance academic freedom, including protection of the right to organize, extension of tenure and due process rights to college faculty, and the involvement of all college faculty in meaningful shared governance at their institutions. The dialogue at this session will help guide several international organizations as they formulate guidelines for academic freedom and autonomy.
Please Fill Out GEAC Survey
Jeff Whittle, Macomb ISD Paras past president, serves as a member of the Governor’s Educator Advisory Council (GEAC), a fifteen-person council of educators and administrators that represent a wide variety of perspectives and locations from all around the state. On behalf of GEAC, Jeff is asking that you take a moment to fill out this brief survey by June 1, 2022 to help GEAC prioritize how to support education in the state of Michigan.
2nd Annual Pride Picnic
Come celebrate Pride Month with your union siblings from across the state! Enjoy food, solidarity, music, and creative activities in a fun & relaxed environment. All are welcome (queer AFT MI members & staff, allies, kids/family members, partner(s), well-behaved pets).
Date: Friday, June 17, 2022
Location: Southeast Area Park – 2901 E Ellsworth Rd, Ann Arbor, MI 48108
RSVP: link forthcoming
Questions? Contact Erin Lavin (field rep): email@example.com
Contribute to the AFT Michigan PAC Today
AFT Michigan fights for our members, students and communities all year round and we need your help. Can you donate $1 a week to aid us in this fight? Please visit the AFT Michigan website to contribute and make a big difference in protecting public education and building a better Michigan future!
Order Materials to Organize New Members!
Thanks to your activism, the AFT gives members a crucial voice in shaping their workplace experience and influencing policy, whether it’s in education, healthcare or public service. Broadcast that message to potential new members with our resources—from member benefits and an inspiring poster to calendars and our booklet about the AFT.
Grow and strengthen your AFT affiliate by ordering today!
Starting now, materials will be available year-round. Whenever you are planning an organizing push, union event or other mobilizing opportunity, you can select the resources you need at go.aft.org/AFTmaterials. Ordering two weeks in advance of your event should be sufficient, but please keep in mind that supply chain challenges have created a global paper shortage, so delivery may be delayed. (Instead of ordering large quantities now, please consider taking advantage of being able to order year-round. Materials will be updated periodically.)
Upcoming Professional Development
AFT Michigan Virtual Workshop
Educators’ Self-Help Using the Brain Rules
June 4, 2022 | 8:30 – 4:00 p.m.
This workshop will investigate several principles that educators may implement to support their personal and professional lives, in order to support student achievement.
Participants will receive 6 SCECHs after completion of the workshop.
Click here to register.