2011 Triennial Election: Davis Joint Council Candidates

Voting Information

Find out where and when you can vote: Voting Times and Locations

Information on the statewide Local Executive Board election is here. Information on Joint Council candidate elections and Sample Ballots for each Unit are in a separate post specific for each unit.

Below is a list of nominated candidates for Davis unit representatives to the Joint Council.
Candidate statements are listed for each candidate per Article 14 of the Local Bylaws.


Unit Chair (1 Position)

Justin B. Clement

I am a second-year graduate student in history. I’m running for the Unit Chair position because I believe I have a lot of experience to bring to the table, and can help UC-Davis graduate students weather the storm ahead.

Unions are under threat today. This is a critical time for our membership, as UC administrators and government officials may threaten our very right to collectively bargain. The debacle in Wisconsin should be our Alamo. “Remember Wisconsin” should be our rallying cry. We face a constant struggle to prevent the UC from eroding our rights and benefits. I am committed to creating a strong grass-roots base of support for our Union. I would also like to explore ways in which our Union can act on the offense, rather than the defense, in order to support our rights and place within the UC system.

I bring a lot of strengths to the table. First and foremost, I consider myself an academic. As someone committed to working within the university academy for the rest of my professional career, I believe I will make a good representative. Second, I have some experience organizing, as I served as the founder and president of a student-run organization at The College of William & Mary. Lastly, I have both a science and humanities background. I have a Bachelor’s degree in Physics, and am working on my Ph.D. in History. With this diverse background, I hope I can meet the needs of our membership.

I would be honored to have your vote, and I promise to be receptive to the needs of the Union membership.

Angel M. Hinzo

I’m running for Campus Chair as a member of the United for Social and Economic Justice team. I’m a 2nd year student in the Ph.D. program in the Native American Studies department.

I’m running for Campus Chair to aid and give voice to the needs of Graduate Students, TAs, GSIs, Readers and Tutors throughout the UC Davis campus.

There’s never been a more critical time for us to speak with a powerful, unified voice as a union. Public higher education is under attack in Sacramento and Washington. Our right – and the right of all public employees – to have a union is under attack. And we face a constant struggle to preserve our rights and benefits against take-aways by UC.

We’re part of a team of union members that’s built the strength of our union and won great contracts over the past ten years at UC. We’re committed to continue building a strong, grassroots, member-run union that:

·  wins great contracts;
·  recruits diverse leaders from a variety of departments on every UC campus;
·  plays a leading role in helping new groups of workers form unions;
·  works in coalition with students, unions and other progressive allies to defend public higher education against budget cuts and privatization.

A complete description of our plans to continue strengthening UAW 2865 is at: uniteduc.org. We also want your feedback and input on how we can continue strengthening our union.

I would be honored to have your vote. Please make sure to print-out this list of all the United for Social and Economic Justice candidates and bring it to the polls. Please cast a ballot for all the United for Social and Economic Justice candidates – both here at UC Davis, and for all statewide offices.

Thank you for your support.

Recording Secretary (1 Position)

William Dawson

My name is William David Fletcher Dawson and I am a first year graduate student in Computer Science. I am running for recording secretary as a member of the United for Social and Economic Justice team. During my time here at UC Davis, I have been impressed by the diverse backgrounds students here come from. They will all face unique challenges and pursue diverse goals during their time as TAs. I am running for recording secretary in hope of serving them well, and helping the union provide strong support and great opportunities.

It is in all of our interests to keep the university strong, and help it recruit and develop the best students possible. That is why we need a powerful union with a unified voice. A powerful union will mean great contracts for our students, that give them the support they need for developing into leaders in their fields. Our future success depends on the success of our fellow students here at UC Davis. Unfortunately, from Sacramento to Washington higher education and unions are under attack. If we do not work together to fight back, we will find our opportunities squashed, and the university left in ruin.

I’m running as part of a team of union members that’s built the strength of our union and won great contracts over the past ten years at UC. We’re committed to the continuing work of building a strong, grassroots, member-run union that:
·  wins great contracts;
·  recruits diverse leaders from a variety of departments on every UC campus;
·  plays a leading role in helping new groups of workers form unions;
·  works in coalition with students, unions and other progressive allies to defend public higher education against budget cuts and privatization.
A complete description of our plans to continue strengthening UAW 2865 is at: uniteduc.org. We also want your feedback and input on how we can continue strengthening our union.
I would be honored to have your vote. Please make sure to print-out this list of all the United for Social and Economic Justice candidates and bring it to the polls. Please cast a ballot for all the United for Social and Economic Justice candidates – both here at UC Davis, and for all statewide offices.
Nickolas Mario Perrone

My name is Nick Perrone and I’m running for Campus Unit Recording Secretary at UC Davis.
The current UAW elections are crucial for the future of graduate student-workers here at Davis and across the UC system. We have an opportunity to strengthen our political leverage and improve our working environment. As a first year graduate student studying U.S. History, I have encountered the failure of our union’s current leadership to bargain aggressively on our behalf. I have worked in the past as an organizer for various labor issues, and have long been an advocate for increased worker protections, wages, and benefits—all pertinent issues facing UC Davis graduate students. Running for Recording Secretary on the UAW Reform Caucus, Academic Workers for a Democratic Union (AWDU), I am committed to a decentralized union that emphasizes the needs of individual campuses while increasing membership participation to fight against the dangerous cuts to public education that we currently face. AWDU’s fight is to win wage and benefit increases and create a participatory, transparent and democractic union.

You can learn more about our movement to reform our union and empower academic student employees by visiting the website of Academic Workers for a Democratic Union (AWDU) at awdu.org.

Head Steward (7 Positions)

Emily Davidson

I’m running for Head Steward as a member of the United for Social and Economic Justice team. I’m a 3rd year graduate student in the Spanish and Portuguese Department.

I’m running for Head Steward because I believe in the rights of graduate student workers and the continued advocacy and collaboration that we as the union currently strive to foster with our greater labor community.

There’s never been a more critical time for us to speak with a powerful, unified voice as a union. Public higher education is under attack in Sacramento and Washington. Our right – and the right of all public employees – to have a union is under attack. And we face a constant struggle to preserve our rights and benefits against take-aways by UC.

We’re part of a team of union members that’s built the strength of our union and won great contracts over the past ten years at UC. We’re committed to continue building a strong, grassroots, member-run union that:

·  wins great contracts;
·  recruits diverse leaders from a variety of departments on every UC campus;
·  plays a leading role in helping new groups of workers form unions;
·  works in coalition with students, unions and other progressive allies to defend public higher education against budget cuts and privatization.
A complete description of our plans to continue strengthening UAW 2865 is at: uniteduc.org. We also want your feedback and input on how we can continue strengthening our union.
I would be honored to have your vote. Please make sure to print-out this list of all the United for Social and Economic Justice candidates and bring it to the polls. Please cast a ballot for all the United for Social and Economic Justice candidates – both here at UC Davis, and for all statewide offices.Thank you for your support.
Joshua Garber

I’m running for head steward as a member of the United for Social and Economic Justice team. I’m a 2nd year M.S. candidate in the geology department at UC-Davis, and have been a TA for every quarter here except one.

I’m running for head steward because I believe that we need strong student representation, not only to ensure that we as public workers are protected and supported, but also with the aim of strengthening our universities. I want to work positively and in good faith to negotiate fair contracts, support my fellow students, and stand up for public education, so that all of us can focus on doing our jobs as student workers and providing a first-class educational system for California.

There’s never been a more critical time for us to speak with a powerful, unified voice as a union. Public higher education is under attack in Sacramento and Washington. Our right – and the right of all public employees – to have a union is under attack. And we face a constant struggle to preserve our rights and benefits against take-aways by UC.

We’re part of a team of union members that’s built the strength of our union and won great contracts over the past ten years at UC. We’re committed to continue building a strong, grassroots, member-run union that:

·  wins great contracts;
·  recruits diverse leaders from a variety of departments on every UC campus;
·  plays a leading role in helping new groups of workers form unions;
·  works in coalition with students, unions and other progressive allies to defend public higher education against budget cuts and privatization.
A complete description of our plans to continue strengthening UAW 2865 is at: uniteduc.org. We also want your feedback and input on how we can continue strengthening our union.
I would be honored to have your vote. Please make sure to print-out this list of all the United for Social and Economic Justice candidates and bring it to the polls. Please cast a ballot for all the United for Social and Economic Justice candidates – both here at Davis and for all statewide offices.
Thank you for your support.
Tim Gutierrez

I am a graduate student in Sociology. For the past seven years, I have fought for student and worker rights at the UC and I have seen the awesome potential of our union. In recent years, I served UC Davis for nearly three years as Campus Recording Secretary. Since then, I have remained involved in the struggle against devastating budget cuts and fee hikes.

We have the resources and the leverage to be a powerful force in defense of public education and workers rights. But the only way we can take advantage of our collective strength is by putting the union in the hands of its members. In the past, many active members have been disenchanted by an entrenched leadership that has discouraged autonomous member participation. I have been reinvigorated by all the new voices of members who demand to be heard. If we want to fight for public education and win new contracts with better benefits and working conditions, we need our union to be a truly democratic organization that is able to empower members and inspire unprecedented levels of participation.

Along with other like-minded and committed union activists, I am running as a part of Academic Workers for a Democratic Union (AWDU). We envision a decentralized union that emphasizes and values member participation, openness, and transparency. You can learn more about our by visiting awdu.org. Please consider endorsing our slate at awdu.org/endorse.

Andrew Higgins

I’m a second year graduate student studying twentieth century American history. As such, I know the important role that organized labor has played in making the United States a more just and equal society. I am running on the AWDU (Academic Workers for a Democratic Union) slate because I believe that direct democracy and a union more cognizant of and involved in our campus-specific issues will help to better our experiences as graduate students. Thus far at Davis I have been highly disappointed by the ossified union bureaucracy which has proven unresponsive to the graduate students it supposedly represents. A vote for me, and for the rest of the AWDU slate, is a vote for union representatives who understand our situation on the ground and are willing to fight for the changes that will make UC Davis a better place to work and study. You can learn more about our movement to reform our union and empower academic student employees by visiting the website of Academic Workers for a Democratic Union (AWDU) at awdu.org. And to help support our movement, please consider endorsing our slate at awdu.org/endorse.

Xochitl Alicia Lopez

I am running for Head Steward at UC Davis as a member of the United for Social and Economic Justice team. I’m a second year law student at UC Davis, and have been a graduate student at Davis and Santa Cruz.

I am running for Head Steward because our union is known across the country as an effective union that achieves great rights and economic benefits for workers, and I want to contribute to that. I believe I have the skills and passion strengthen our northern campuses. I have organized members on all our northern campuses, Davis, Berkeley, Santa Cruz, and Merced. When I say organizing, I don’t mean making speeches and blogging, I mean one-on-one, face to face talks with workers of diverse backgrounds and beliefs about the importance of signing up for the union, paying dues, and going on strike.

Before coming to Davis, I worked as a lead organizer in a campaign that won a union for TAs, Gas and Graders on 23 CSU campuses across California. I helped organize the first strike ever held in the CSU system. Later, I worked on successful organizing drives elsewhere- with casino employees, postdoctoral researchers, and auto workers. I have organized all over California, in New York, and New Jersey. I have learned to recognize a good strategy and a winning team- the United for Social and Economic Justice team has that!

At many universities around the country, student employees have already lost their legal right to have a union. There’s never been a more critical time for us to speak with a powerful, unified voice as a union. Public higher education is under attack in Sacramento and Washington. Our right – and the right of all public employees – to have a union is under attack. And we face a constant struggle to preserve our rights and benefits against take-aways by UC.

We’re part of a team of union members that built the strength of our union and won great contracts over the past ten years at UC. We’re committed to continue building a strong, grassroots, member-run union that:

·  wins great contracts;
·  recruits diverse leaders from a variety of departments on every UC campus;
·  plays a leading role in helping new groups of workers form unions;
·  works in coalition with students, unions and other progressive allies to defend public higher education against budget cuts and privatization.
A complete description of our plans to continue strengthening UAW 2865 is at: uniteduc.org. We also want your feedback and input on how we can continue strengthening our union.
I would be honored to have your vote. Please make sure to print-out this list of all the United for Social and Economic Justice candidates and bring it to the polls. Please cast a ballot for all the United for Social and Economic Justice candidates – from this campus and for all statewide offices.

Thank you for your support.

A.J. Morgan

My name is A.J. Morgan and I’m running for Head Steward at UC Davis.

Upcoming UAW elections are crucially important for graduate student-workers. We have an opportunity to strengthen our political leverage and better our workplace. As a first year graduate student studying African History, I encountered early the failure of UAW’s current leadership to bargain aggressively on our behalf. Prior to graduate school I worked as a union organizer with Unite Here in Northern California organizing casino and hotel workers. I have long been an advocate for increased worker protections, wages, and benefits—all pertinent issues facing UC Davis graduate. Running for Head Steward on the UAW Reform Caucus, Academic Workers for a Democratic Union (AWDU), I envision a decentralized union that emphasizes and values membership participation. AWDU’s fight is to win wage and benefit increases and create a participatory, democractic union.

You can learn more about our movement to reform our union and empower academic student employees by visiting the website of Academic Workers for a Democratic Union (AWDU) at awdu.org. And to help support our movement, please consider endorsing our slate at awdu.org/endorse.

We are the backbone of this institution and it is time our work is compensated and recognized!

Jonathan Muliang

I’m running for Davis Head Steward as a member of the United for Social and Economic Justice team. I’m a graduate student in Physics.

I’m running for Head Steward because I look forward to helping improve the rights of Academic Student Employees.There’s never been a more critical time for us to speak with a powerful, unified voice as a union. Public higher education is under attack in Sacramento and Washington. Our right – and the right of all public employees – to have a union is under attack. And we face a constant struggle to preserve our rights and benefits against take-aways by UC.
We’re part of a team of union members that’s built the strength of our union and won great contracts over the past ten years at UC. We’re committed to continue building a strong, grassroots, member-run union that:

·  wins great contracts;
·  recruits diverse leaders from a variety of departments on every UC campus;
·  plays a leading role in helping new groups of workers form unions;
·  works in coalition with students, unions and other progressive allies to defend public higher education against budget cuts and privatization.

A complete description of our plans to continue strengthening UAW 2865 is at: uniteduc.org. We also want your feedback and input on how we can continue strengthening our union.

I would be honored to have your vote. Please make sure to print-out this list of all the United for Social and
Economic Justice candidates and bring it to the polls. Please cast a ballot for all the United for Social and Economic Justice candidates – both here at Davis and for all statewide offices.
Thank you for your support.
Tom O’Donnell

I am a second-year student in the history department and I am eager to represent the Davis campus as one of your Head Stewards. I want to help mobilize union resources and graduate students to fight the big fight: cuts to higher education. I also believe that our individual working conditions need vigilance and an advocate. I envision a decentralized union that emphasizes and values member participation, openness, and transparency because YOU ARE the union.

Jordan Scavo

I became involved with reforming our union after the current leadership accepted a contract with wage increases that will likely not even keep pace with inflation. Recently, the UC has adopted an aggressive stance toward graduate student workers. Why has our leadership adopted a conciliatory attitude toward the UC in the face of such anti-labor aggression? Especially in the context of other high-profile anti-labor activity across the country, why won’t our leadership fight back? Why won’t they stand aside to allow others to fight back on our behalf?

I want to represent UC Davis graduate student workers so that I can fight for fair wages and benefits. I want to help democratize the union and break up its trenchant leadership. I want to correct our leadership’s failure to communicate unequivocally the integral role that graduate student workers have in the mutually beneficial relationship between graduate students, faculty, and the UC.

You can learn more about our movement to reform our union and empower academic student employees by visiting the website of Academic Workers for a Democratic Union (AWDU) at awdu.org. And to help support our movement, please consider endorsing our slate at awdu.org/endorse.

Alicia María Siu Bernal

I’m running for Head Steward of UC Davis as a member of the United for Social and Economic Justice team. I’m from the Masters program in the Native American Studies Department of UC Davis.

I’m running for Head Steward of UC Davis because I believe in the crucial role of the Union in maintaining healthy working conditions for Academic Workers in order to provide a high quality standard education. I am eager to work in the enforcement of protections and rights of Academic Workers and to be available to students in order to resolve their concerns and needs. I am enthusiastic about collective bargaining as a means of obtaining benefits and enforcing just working conditions.

There’s never been a more critical time for us to speak with a powerful, unified voice as a union. Public higher education is under attack in Sacramento and Washington. Our right – and the right of all public employees – to have a union is under attack. And we face a constant struggle to preserve our rights and benefits against take-aways by UC.

We’re part of a team of union members that’s built the strength of our union and won great contracts over the past ten years at UC. We’re committed to continue building a strong, grassroots, member-run union that:

·  wins great contracts;
·  recruits diverse leaders from a variety of departments on every UC campus;
·  plays a leading role in helping new groups of workers form unions;
·  works in coalition with students, unions and other progressive allies to defend public higher education against budget cuts and privatization.
A complete description of our plans to continue strengthening UAW 2865 is at: uniteduc.org. We also want your feedback and input on how we can continue strengthening our union.
I would be honored to have your vote. Please make sure to print-out this list of all the United for Social and Economic Justice candidates and bring it to the polls. Please cast a ballot for all the United for Social and Economic Justice candidates – both here at Davis and for all statewide offices.
Thank you for your support.
Vish Soroushian

I’m a third year law student at the UC Davis School of Law, and I am running for Head Steward as a member of the United for Social and Economic Justice team. I’m running for Head Steward to ensure that the concerns of UC Davis graduate students are strongly represented within the Union and that graduate worker grievances against the university are resolved in a timely and favorable fashion. Prior to law school, I was a union organizer. As a law student, I am clerking with a labor-side law firm.

There’s never been a more critical time for us to speak with a powerful, unified voice as a union. Public higher education is under attack in Sacramento and Washington. Our right–and the right of all public employees – to have a union is under attack. And we face a constant struggle to preserve our rights and benefits against take-aways by UC.

We’re part of a team of union members that’s built the strength of our union and won great contracts over the past ten years at UC. We’re committed to continue building a strong, grassroots, member-run union that:

·  wins great contracts;
·  recruits diverse leaders from a variety of departments on every UC campus;
·  plays a leading role in helping new groups of workers form unions;
·  works in coalition with students, unions and other progressive allies to defend public higher education against budget cuts and privatization.

A complete description of our plans to continue strengthening UAW 2865 is at: uniteduc.org. We also want your feedback and input on how we can continue strengthening our union.

I would be honored to have your vote. Please make sure to print-out this list of all the United for Social and Economic Justice candidates and bring it to the polls. Please cast a ballot for all the United for Social and Economic Justice candidates – both here at Davis and for all statewide offices.

Thank you for your support.

Jessica Taal

I have been an active member of our union at UC Berkeley, and I recently came to UC Davis as a grad student in the School of Education. As a student working towards a professional degree, I will be a voice for issues and concerns that impact our educational and professional lives. I’m running for Head Steward because I want to be a part of a unionism that is relevant, vital and growing. That’s why I’ve been a part of Academic Workers for a Democratic Union for the past year. AWDU is a caucus within UAW 2865 that is working as a positive force to make the union better and stronger through openness and democracy – rather than relying on failed, top-down tactics that have been killing the labor movement, as the current leadership has. We are about the empowerment of all members of our union, and have worked hard this past year to revive our union, connect with other activists across the UC campuses to save public education in this state, both for and with the current and potential students of the UC system, Cal state and the Community Colleges, but also for and with the workers who enable these schools to exist. We believe an active union with broad participation is a stronger union. Check out our ideas for transforming UAW 2865 into a real social justice union at www.awdu.org. Please vote, and recruit all your friends to vote; you can add your name to our endorsement list at www.awdu.org/endorse.

Nicholas Joseph Toothman

I’m running for head steward at UC Davis as a member of the United for Social and Economic Justice team. I’m a first year Ph.D student in the Computer Science department.

I’m running for head steward because as a new graduate student, I have had the pleasure of learning how the union has perpetually fought for the rights I now enjoy as a teaching assistant.

There’s never been a more critical time for us to speak with a powerful, unified voice as a union. Public higher education is under attack in Sacramento and Washington. Our right – and the right of all public employees – to have a union is under attack. And we face a constant struggle to preserve our rights and benefits against take-aways by UC.

We’re part of a team of union members that’s built the strength of our union and won great contracts over the past ten years at UC. We’re committed to continue building a strong, grassroots, member-run union that:

·  wins great contracts;
·  recruits diverse leaders from a variety of departments on every UC campus;
·  plays a leading role in helping new groups of workers form unions;
·  works in coalition with students, unions and other progressive allies to defend public higher education against budget cuts and privatization.

A complete description of our plans to continue strengthening UAW 2865 is at: uniteduc.org. We also want your feedback and input on how we can continue strengthening our union.

I would be honored to have your vote. Please make sure to print-out this list of all the United for Social and Economic Justice candidates and bring it to the polls. Please cast a ballot for all the United for Social and Economic Justice candidates – both here at UC Davis, and for all statewide offices.

Thank you for your support.

Eran Zelnik

I am running for a Head Steward position in U.C. Davis to represent academic workers in our fight to fend off attempts by the U.C. administration to encroach upon our benefits, salaries and working conditions. In these uncertain times of unchallenged privatization and vicious campaigns against unions nationwide we need an engaged union leadership. Unfortunately, the current union leadership has not met this challenge with sufficient dedication. Currently, union activity on campus is virtually nonexistent. This is why I joined a reform group called AWDU—Academic Workers for a Democratic Union. Together we intend to change UAW 2856 into the viable and assertive workers union it should be—one that is attentive to its membership and to their needs as workers.

Since my very first days as an undergraduate I have been involve in various social and environmental initiatives, I have worked as a high school teacher for several years, and since arriving at U.C. Davis last academic year I have been active with several groups on campus as well. I believe that these experiences in activism and social engagement will help me represent graduate student workers at U.C. Davis.

 

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Sample Ballot (can be saved and printed):



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