Meet members of the AFL-CIO's Young Workers Advisory Council.
Arciniega, of San Jose, Calif., is a full-time customer service representative at Pacific Gas & Electric Co. and a full-time college student—a schedule that has forced him to give up his pass-times of baseball and Azteca/Foklorico traditional dance, at least for now. He is involved with Electrical Workers' (IBEW’s) LU1245 YES (Youth Engaged for Solidarity) Group.
Organizer and coalition-builder Gregory Cendana is the first openly gay, and youngest Executive Director, of the Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance (APALA), AFL-CIO, and Institute for Asian Pacific American Leadership & Advancement. He serves on the Executive Committee of the National Council of Asian Pacific Americans, as chair for the Labor Coalition for Community Action and is the youngest general board member of the AFL-CIO. Named one of Washington, D.C.’s most influential 40-and-under young leaders, one of the 30 Most Influential Asian Americans Under 30 & the "Future of D.C. Politics", Cendana is a recognized strategist, advocate and public speaker. Previously, he served as president of the United States Student Association where he played an integral role in the passage of the Student Aid & Fiscal Responsibility Act and Healthcare & Education Reconciliation Act.
Eric Clinton is president of UNITE HERE Local 362, which represents 6,300 attractions, custodial and vacation planners at Walt Disney World and food service workers at the Orlando International Airport. Clinton is also the president of the Central Florida AFL-CIO, representing 40,000 working men and women in Central Florida.
As a Disney worker, Clinton first became active in his union in 1998 as a member and shop steward for his area at the then-Disney-MGM Studios. Signing up new members and enforcing the workers’ contract became a priority for him. Later, he became an executive board member of his local before joining UNITE HERE staff to work full-time for the organization in 2001. His first major campaign work was organizing some of the 60,000 members of UNITE HERE Local 226 during their 2002 citywide contract fight for casino workers in Las Vegas. Upon returning to Orlando, Fla., he became a union representative for Local 362, training and developing workplace leaders at Walt Disney World. His growing experience and eagerness to learn pushed him into the position of Lead Organizer for his local in 2005. Eric trained for this role in Toronto, working with UNITE HERE Local 75 on the citywide hotel contract fight. Clinton became President of Local 362 in April 2008, when his longtime mentor and former Local 362 President, Morty Miller, retired.
Clinton also has been active in local politics, interfaith organizing, Labor in the Pulpit, civil disobedience and participated in the Immigrant Workers Freedom Ride in 2003.
Davis, a trade unionist his entire working life, holds a Bachelor degree in philosophy from Brooklyn College and a Law degree from Fordham University. He is currently a senior national representative for the Utility Workers Union of America (UWUA) and serves as the UWUA Young Worker Initiative committee coordinator.
Davis has organized and negotiated contracts across the country for UWUA since joining the staff in 2009. Prior to joining the UWUA national office, he served as a business agent for its local 1-2 in New York.
In 2012, he helped negotiate Local 1-2's collective bargaining agreement, putting 8,500 locked-out union members back to work. Seeing those 8,500 men and women stick together in unity during such a trying moment is one of his proudest moments as a labor activist.
Gaitaud, a member of United Steelworkers Local 7150 in Albany, Ore., is a journeyman millwright. He has held several positions with his local, including treasurer, PAC chair, safety chair, Executive Board member and a member of the Rapid Response Committee. Currently he serves on the union’s grievance committee and the USW young worker council. He’s also president of Oregon AFL-CIO Young Emerging Labor Leaders (YELL). Gaitaud, who is a father of three young children, says his family gatherings can be “interesting, to say the least”—he says his parents are right-wing union opponents while his in-laws are fourth-generation union members.
Hayssen has been a part of the labor movement for more than ten years and currently serves as field director for the Minnesota AFL-CIO. She supports working families' issues and runs the MN Young Worker Program, which focuses on growing the labor movement and finding solutions for the unique challenges the millennial generation faces in the economy. She holds a Masters Degree in Advocacy and Political Leadership from the University of Minnesota, Duluth. She serves on the inaugural AFL-CIO Young Worker Advisory Council as well as various boards which support local and global economic justice.
Lake joined the Communications Workers of America (CWA) in 2000, where he currently works as a lineman for a large telephone company and helps lead CWA’s Next Generation program.
Lake became engaged passionately in union activity following a seven-month layoff in 2003 when CWA won an arbitration case putting him and thousands of his brothers and sisters back to work. Since then he constantly battles forces who oppose economic and social justice.
His involvement as an AVP of his local for nine years, serving as political coordinator, mobilization coordinator and organizer while working for CWA’s District 1 and CWA’s National Next Gen program has provided a unique blend of a grassroots soul with big picture eyes. Lake is dedicated to the labor movement and realizes that work really does connect us all.
Levine, of Pittsburgh, works for the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare and is the president of AFSCME Local 2577. He has been involved with AFSCME's Next Wave program since 2009 and is co-chair of both the PA Council 13 and AFSCME International Next Wave Committees.
He enjoys public speaking and has given several speeches and presentations on Next Wave and young worker programs to various groups including the Pennsylvania AFL-CIO Community Services Institute and the YOUNG AFGE summit.
Levine is also a Local Union Training Instructor, having administered officer, steward, and financial standards training to hundreds of members since 2010; and a Volunteer Member Organizer, having knocked on doors in four different states over three organizing campaigns.
He is a member of CLUW and a student at the National Labor College.
Richardson is currently employed with the United States Postal service and serves as the Clerk Craft Director for the American Postal Workers Union Chicago Local 001. He is also the current District 1 assistant business agent for the Illinois Postal Workers Union. He serves on both executive boards and is one of the founding members of Chicago Young Workers. Richardson's mother was a longtime officer of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters Local 743. He has served on various committees within APWU and is eager to take on new challenges when called upon.
Rodriguez joined Working America in May of 2011. As field operations specialist, she helps coordinate field logistics and ensure timely and accurate updates from the field for a network that has reached 14 canvass offices. She has expanded Working America’s program to hire and develop diverse leadership staff through the Advanced Recruitment Project on historically black colleges and universities. In addition, she publicly represents Working America by participating in job fairs and speaking with students. Prior to serving at Working America, she worked as a legislative correspondent for Senator Tom Harkin, where she researched and tracked issues pertaining to labor, civil rights, judiciary and telecommunications. She was raised in Iowa, where she received a B.A. in History from the University of Iowa. In her spare time, she likes to run and spend time with her 8-year-old mentee.
Sloan serves as the directory of government affairs for the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT).
As government affairs director, he oversees IUPAT's political action, campaign and mobilization activities, as well as the IUPAT's state and federal lobbying efforts in the U.S. and Canada.
Prior to being named director of government affairs, he served IUPAT as their chief lobbyist on Capitol Hill and helped push a broad legislative agenda.
Sloan is a native of Washington, D.C. He is a graduate of Earlham College and is scheduled to receive a Masters degree from George Washington University’s Graduate School of Political Management later this year.
Wyvill, born and raised in Maryland on the Chesapeake Bay, joined the Machinists (IAM) union in February 2007 as an administrative secretary in the Strategic Resources Department. She has been a member of the AFL-CIO's Young Worker Advisory Council (YWAC) since 2011, the Young Machinists at the IAM's Grand Lodge since 2010, and is currently chief shop steward.
Wyvill has completed all four classes of the Leadership series offered by the IAM and is currently studying for her Bachelors of Arts Degree in Labor Studies through the partnership between the IAM and the National Labor College. Along with taking classes of her own, she also has facilitated trainings as a member of the AFL‐CIO Young Workers Advisory Council at the 2011 Next Up Conference in Minneapolis and the inaugural Young Worker Leadership Institute held at the AFL-CIO in August 2012.
Since being appointed to the Young Machinists, which was designed to educate and boost involvement of the IAM’s younger members, Wyvill as traveled with the IAM and IUPAT GOTV "It's About Jobs" bus tours, helped plan the first-ever IAM Human Rights Conference, been involved with the [Washington] D.C. Young Trade Unionists and sits on the Office and Professional Employees (OPEIU) Local 2 “Step Up” young workers committee.
Wyvill says that being a unionist comes natural to her; as the mother of four boys, one with Autism, taking a wholehearted stand for solidarity and issue advocacy is a given. In her community, she sings in the choir, volunteers with her church, with the National Autism Speaks Foundation and with The Autism Project of Owings, Md.
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