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January Newsletter, Issue #25

Issue # 25: January 24, 2023

Update from the President

Frankie Cocanour (2022-2024 Term)

Chief Labor Delegate:

Please join me in welcoming Mark Jordan as our new Chief Labor Delegate. As many of you know Mark has helped with union organizing in the past. Mark has wonderful energy and I’m really excited to have him representing us in the Lane County Chapter meetings. 

Winter School:

Some of the EC officers will be attending AFT’s Winter School. This is a great opportunity to learn about what you do as a union officer. This year they are offering training on bargaining and on organizing. I will be attending this training.After speaking with Jaime Rodriguez, we are hoping that AFT Oregon will have hired our new representative and that they will be in attendance, Whether they have hired a new representative or not, I am going to take that time to make sure that this is an imperative time for us to have someone here for us. We do still have Mayra Vasquez-Garcia as our organizing representative and she has not only been doing an amazing job working with Colin Vurik on getting our CAT team going, she has been filling in as our union representative for bargaining. We are very lucky to have her. We are hitting a crucial point before bargaining where we will soon start working on our proposal. I will keep everyone updated next week with what happened at Winter School.

Announcements and Reminders


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Vice President of Labor Relations

Buck Potter (2022-2023 Term)

Dawn Rupp our Grievance Officer is out of the office until February 9th. If you are having labor issues or think that you might have a grievance with a manager please send me an email and I will assist you.

Vice President of Organizing

Colin Vurek (2023-2024 Term)

Greetings members, the AFT President is working feverishly to get our new AFT representative hired. Once that has been accomplished we can schedule bargaining meetings. I will get the links out to everyone who would like to attend. 

Also the Executive Council meetings date and time has changed. Members are allowed to observe for a portion of the meeting until there are items that may be confidential. The meetings are now Wednesdays at 11am. Below is the link for the next meeting this Wednesday, January 25, 2023. 

Join Zoom Meeting:

Meeting ID: 990 9266 5560

One tap mobile: +12532158782,,99092665560# US (Tacoma)

Dial by your location: +1 253 215 8782 US (Tacoma)

I just ordered a new batch of T-shirts. It’s a brand new look! We should have all sizes available in about a month. 

This week I’m starting to work with new Membership Chair, Skye Nguyen on some actions such as a membership drive and a few rallies during bargaining. 


To get your T-shirt email me at:

T-shirt sizes and count                                         

  • Small – 9
  • Medium – 33
  • Large – 32
  • Extra Large – 6

I also have window clings and stickers for you to flaunt your support for your union! See below!



Grievance Officer

Dawn Rupp (2023-2024 Term)

I am out on medical until February 9 but will be looking at all emails that come my way and helping out where I can with union issues. 

Feel free to reach out to any EC member as they will be covering for me.

If you have someone that you would like to recognize for a job well done consider sending them some chocolate.

Check out the following wellness opportunities for employees for Winter 2023 at

Quote(s) of the week:

One funny…

I found the key to happiness.

Surround yourself with animals and stay away from idiots.

~Mermaid Musings

And one that is meaningful….

No matter how good or bad you think your life is, wake up each day and be thankful for it.

Someone, somewhere else is fighting to survive.

~Mermaid Musings


Linda Reling (2022-2023 Term)

I am excited for winter school! I am sure we’ll come back inspired and ready to tackle the upcoming full contract bargaining.

Records Officer

Tracy Weimer (2022-2024 Term)

Winter School is coming up quick (this weekend), we are going to rally up to Corvallis to learn how to be better union officers and bring back all the knowledge we can gather. Please join me in greetings and salutations to the new Chief Labor Delegate – thank you for stepping up Mark.

Communications Officer

Marleena Pearson (2022-2023 Term)

We need you on the CAT and Worksite Leader teams! We have a lot to plan for coming bargaining actions and communications to members. It will work best if we have a Worksite Leader in every department. Who do you look to in your area for the updates? Email Colin and help us organize:

Thank you for the newsletter feedback so far, we will continue to put effort into improving it. Help us make this newsletter work for you! Newsletter Feedback Survey Google Form

Membership Officer

Skye Nguyen (2022-2023 Term)

Your Benefit Info of the Week

Did you know that members get some really useful benefits? This week we are highlighting Union Scholarships. The deadline for Union plus scholarships is coming to a close January 31st, 2023. If you or someone in your family is going to school or planning to get started with college get in to apply to these scholarships!

Chief Labor Delegate

Mark Jordan (2022-2023 Term)

Enjoy meeting with fellow unions in the county? Learning about what events, organizing, and partnerships are being offered throughout Lane County? Anyone appointed to this position would continue to serve the remaining one year of term in 2023.

COPE Officer

Fiora Starchild-Wolf (2022-2023 Term)

First, let me apologize for not being able to update in the past couple of weeks.  My Mom passed away December 23, and I’ve been out much of the time since then.  

I did send an update out to all of you through email the first week of January, as we watched the beginning of the selection process for Speaker of the House.  This was the first time in exactly 100 years that the Speaker wasn’t elected in the first round, cleanly and easily.  Though there has been some “spin” from some circles that having to vote 15 separate times in order to get a majority for Speaker Kevin McCarthy was, in fact, a show of “democracy working”, that isn’t really the case.  Here’s why:

  1. The floor vote has always been largely ceremonial.  That doesn’t mean that it isn’t “democratic”.  It means that, with exceedingly rare exceptions, the party that wins the House majority in the Election in November usually completes their process of choosing their candidate for Speaker before the House vote the following January. 
  2. That first day

 Officer At Large


We are looking for a 1039 employee that cares about what rights the 1039 classified professionals have with the new contract. Are you frustrated with how 1039 classified professionals are being used to fill long term positions with no real benefits? Would you like more control over how you are treated by management? If this fits you please reach out. It is hard for LCCEF EC to know exactly what is needed at this time because we are all full-time contracted. Please contact an EC member if you are interested.

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