While testing dominates the conversation at the pre-RA conference, gratitude was threaded throughout the dialogue that local and retiree council presidents had with NYSUT’s five officers.
“Thank you for the relief effort you are doing,” Tomia Smith, president of the Massapequa Federation of Teachers, told the nearly 400 local leaders and the union officers. “It means so much to us all” who have lost so much. You might recall this article from late February about how members on Long Island still struggled to recover from October’s Superstorm Sandy.
The NYSUT Disaster Relief Fund provides direct grants of aid to members. The need is still great and you can still give by going to this link.
Local leaders also gave thanks for:
- the Local Action Project, for helping provide local unions with strategies they need to weather tough financial times;
- the support from a wide variety of NYSUT departments such as research and educational services and legislation for getting them answers they need; and
- the service of a number of staffers who retire later this year: Pauline Kinsella who, as executive director, oversees NYSUT’s field services; Peggy Barmore, assistant to President Dick Iannuzzi; John Costello who, as assistant to Executive Vice President Andy Pallotta, helps guide the legislative department; and regional staff directors John Coverdale, John Harvey, Vincent Lyons, Wally Raupp and Linda Stanczik.
Here’s how the conversation played out on Twitter: