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IATSE Officer Institute Launches with First Session in Philadelphia

On May 4th through 9th the first session of the IATSE Officer Institute took place at the offices of Local 8 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Thirty-nine IATSE local union officers, from twenty-nine different local unions attended the five-day intensive training session, to hone their skills in a variety of areas, including Strategic Planning, Collective Bargaining, Labor Law, Organizing, Activism, Fraud Prevention and Financial Reporting.

Also featured were sessions on Time Management, Running Effective Meetings, Communications, Social Media, Resources of the IATSE, the IATSE Training Trust Fund, and the duties of specific union officers. The recently-updated IATSE Road Show, which teaches Labor and Economic history, drawing links between our past, our present, and our future was also shown, and every day provided time for group discussion and networking among the participants.

International President Matthew Loeb has made Leadership Education one of our Union’s four pillars, and in April attended a special session of the IATSE Officer Institute himself, along with General Secretary-Treasurer Wood and the entire General Executive Board, International Representatives and top staff. Their input put the finishing touches on the curriculum, making sure that it would be useful to officers from every craft and level of experience.

The faculty has been assembled from top labor-education programs, and in Philadelphia included Diane Thomas-Holladay, Grainger Ledbetter, Meredith Stepp and Randy Wright from the University of Arkansas Labor Education Program; Ken Margolies from Cornell University, Robyn Cavanagh, currently the Assistant Director of Education and Training for the IATSE and formerly of the National Labor College, and James Heinzman and Peter Murray from the accounting firm of Schultheis and Panettieri. Vice President Barnes presented a talk regarding the structure of the IATSE and IATSE Education and Training Director Patricia White, who is also a trustee of the IATSE Training Trust Fund, gave a brief talk about resources available to local unions through the Fund. Pat then updated the class regarding the dozens of ways the IATSE International can give local unions support in solving their problems and reaching their individual goals.

At graduation, held on the final day of the training, each participant received a unique “IATSE Officer Institute” jacket, and was presented with their diploma by President Loeb at a special luncheon.