Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Candi is Dandy as Her Slate Wins Washington DC Union Election Runoff With Saunders

Another election result not favorable for Randi Weingarten. While Nathan Saunders was a critic of Randi's sellout contract deal with Michelle Rhee years ago, he seems to have walked over the line since being elected as President of the DC union -- though this feeling comes from instinct rather than hard facts. He certainly didn't bring a sense of democracy to the DC union.

See Afterburn for background on the break between former allies Peterson and Saunders.

Candi Peterson reports on her blog.


Jul 1, 2013

Washington Teachers' Union President Nathan Saunders Loses Run Off Election to Davis

Davis(right) Slate wins WTU 2013 Run Off Election.

By Candi Peterson

Washington Teachers Union President, Nathan A. Saunders loses to Elizabeth Davis (known as Liz) in the July 1, 2013 WTU Run Off Election. With Saunders defeat by a margin of 459 to 380, Saunders was forced from his union post. Saunders narrowly defeated Davis in a first round balloting of the WTU election last month, but failed to win a 51% majority which led to a run off election between the two top candidates.

 In addition, Candi Peterson, former WTU General Vice Preisdent who was summarily dismissed by Saunders in 2011 before her term expired paired up with the Davis slate, in a bid for election to her former post. Peterson defeated her opposition, Keith Spinner by a margin of 470 to 360 in the WTU Run Off.

According to the WTU Constitution and by-Laws, the winners are due to take office on July 1st. More details will be forthcoming.


I've known Candi Peterson through blogging and from various conferences for many years. Candi was the chief blogger opposing Michelle Rhee from the day Rhee took over as Superintendent, risking her career. When a conference of various activists opposing ed deform was brewing in LA in July 2009 and they were looking for someone from Washington I put them in touch with Candi who came to that conference which included a big crew from Chicago's CORE and from the LA T Union plus people from San Francisco and Seattle, plus of course Sally Lee (Teachers Unite), Megan Behrent (TJC), and myself (GEM/ICE).

Candi attended that conference with Nathan Saunders who was a dissident VP at the Washington TU who was fired by the president George Parker who has since become an ed deform slug. They decided to run for office in the next union election and in fact won that race.

Thus when we met again in the summer of 2011 in Chicago (this time I was with Julie Cavanagh, Lisa Donlan, Gloria Brandman and Angel Gonzalez), they were in charge of the DC union. On our last day we hung out in a restaurant with Nathan and Candi and were all having a great time. But a short time later there was a major dispute between them and Saunders "fired" Peterson, forcing her back to working in a school. Her powerful blog had not been as active while she was a union official so she tried to resurrect it.

I'm hazy on the rest of the story but today's report is a happy result for Candi and the hard work she has always been doing to defend the educators in Washington.

1 comment:

  1. This is such great news! It was very upsetting to hear that Saunders had fired Peterson. The reason behind the firing can only be surmised as a person who wanted to protect the best interest of the members and Saunders probably had other "reform" goals for the DC Teachers.

    Another union election has won by taking a stand against "corporate reforms", "teaching to the test", and the Obama-Duncan "RttT" public school injustice.

    Chicago, Newark, D.C., and hopefully NYC!

    Congrats to Davis and Peterson and their caucus.


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