November 2017 Advocate: Letter from Joe Berry


Joe Berry, former AFT 1493 staffer, still reads and appreciates The Advocate

RE: AFT 1493: October 2017 Advocate

Very good issue. Honest and self critical in many places, a rare treat in union publications, but standard for the Advocate from my day and before. Articles do not read like they were all written by the same person and do not insult readers’ intelligence. Some are even fairly long! I remember when I was Executive Secretary (Dan Kaplan’s current position) back in the 1988-94 era, the leader of the union (CFA chapter) at SFSU, Tim Sampson, told me that as a teacher of organizing at SFSU in the Department of Social Work, he got many union newsletters. He always read ours, he said, and that it was one of the best he ever saw, even though it broke many of the old union rules. It kept the most important one, “Know your constituency” and he was right. I might only add, now with over 20 years of experience as a labor educator, that this means knowing when to lead and when to follow. Thanks for keeping me on the list.

Please share this note with all my friends and thanks again for your essential support over all the years since 2012 in our fight to saves CCSF as a real community college for SF. Now please help us rebuild our enrollment. We are allies, not competitors, though the admins would have us believe otherwise.

In solidarity,

Joe Berry,
AFT 1493 Executive Secretary, 1988-94;
now AFT 2121 retiree and retiree rep. to
AFT 2121 Executive Board

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