Ninety-eight delegates, ten alternates and fourteen guests attended the Twenty-first Annual Convention of the Minnesota AFL-CIO Retiree Council on Wednesday, September 27, 2017 at the Sheet Metal Workers #10 Hall. Big events that day – a HUGE twentieth anniversary cake, the launch of our Strategic Plan to guide our work over the next few years, election of all officers and Board members and recognition awards to union leaders.
Delegates broke into discussion groups to brainstorm ideas about organizing, political action, communications and structure.
Bill Moore, Charlie Rike, Mary Sansom and Russ Thornell were all re-elected to their officer positions. Rod Anderson did not run to keep the vice-president job, but was elected as a Board member. Board member Ken McInnes assumed the vice president job.
All incumbent board members were re-elected and the following new Board members were elected: Tom Edwards, Postal Workers Retiree; Gregory Kinne, Machinists Retirees; Julie Jagusch, Education Minnesota Retired; Michael Nelson, AFSCME Local 172 Retiree.
The following Board members have come to the Board since the last election as representatives of their union: Leif Grina, Minneapolis Regional Labor Federation Retiree Council; Peggy Kreber, AFSCME Chapter 5 Retirees; Tamara Ochs, AFSCME Chapter 5 Retirees.
Awards were presented as follows:.
George Colby Award recognizing service over years: to Retiree Council President Bill Moore and to Minnesota Nurses Association Executive Director Rose Roach.
Retiree Council Award for service to retirees: to Bobby Kasper, president of the St. Paul Regional Labor Federation; Kip Hedges, longtime Machinist union activist and Retiree Council Board member; Harry Grigsby, longtime SEIU union activist, Retiree Council Board member and chair of our Pension Committee.
Bernard Brommer Award for leadership in building retiree power: to Walt Munsterman, past president of Education Minnesota Retired, Retiree Council Board member, and public employee pension advocate; Graeme Allen, Minneapolis Regional Labor Federation staff, key worker in creating the MLRF Retiree Council; Tom Beer, organizer and first President of the MLRF Retiree Council, and longtime AFSCME staff.
Bob Bonacorda Community Service Award to the St. Paul Regional Labor Federation Labor Studies and Resource Center.
Tom Dwyer Political Service Award to Machinist Union retiree and political activist Don Slaten; to the MLRF Commission on Racial and Economic Justice.
Martha Johnson Communications Award to Myrna Doran, longtime Education Minnesota union leader and communications chair of Education Minnesota Retired.
Don Anderson Affiliate Excellence Award to the Council of Active Retired Nurses of the MNA; AFSCME Retirees United Chapter 5 representing retirees of AFSCME Council 5.
As part of the anniversary celebration, Rod Anderson produced a video with historical perspectives about the growth of the Retiree Council. It’s on our You Tube offerings.
Thanks to Lois Wendt and her committee and all convention committees for their great work.