Members honored at Delegate Assembly 2021
Many of those attending Delegate Assembly say one of their most memorable parts of the annual conference is seeing their colleagues recognized in front of their peers.
The Neil Farnsworth distinguished service award goes to a MAPE steward who goes the extra mile to help other members. Longtime Region 1 Chief Steward Jed Becher received the honor this year. Becher has been a member and past chair of the MNIT Meet and Confer team since MNIT was established in 2011 and has been a Department of Natural Resources Meet and Confer member for the last three years.
“His fellow DNR colleagues aren’t the only ones who appreciate the hard work he does on their behalf. Jed is always willing to listen to, guide and strategize with MAPE stewards from throughout the union on ways to advocate for employees,” MAPE President Megan Dayton said.
The Betty Rogers award is an annual recognition to a Minnesota
government professional for outstanding union achievement. It has been a challenging year – not just with COVID-19 but with contract negotiations and a host of other issues. “Negotiations Committee Co-Chairs Adam Novotny and Carolyn Murphy sat across the table from an antagonistic bargaining team from MMB and never stopped fighting got their union brothers and sisters,” Dayton said.
“Their smarts, spirit and humor helped them build a team and engage and uplift their colleagues throughout the negotiations process. Their insistence on transparency pushed MAPE to try new things like opening up negotiations to all interested members and fighting for issues like equity and diversity,” Dayton added.
“Collective action matters. More than 8,000 members gave the Negotiations team their contract priorities and ideas. Thousands of members met with Governor Tim Walz before bargaining began, participated in open bargaining and signed petitions. Nearly 1,000 attended a Rally for the Contract at the Capitol, and I don’t think it was a coincidence that MMB settled our contract just a few hours later,” Dayton said.
Organizing Council Chair Sarah Evans presented several membership awards to MAPE locals. Part of the negotiations process included member engagement in our actions, the two biggest being the Rally for the Contract at the Capitol and signing the petition showing the support of our proposals. Locals recruiting the highest number of participants at the rally were Locals 902, 301, 1901, 801 and 802. The top five locals with the highest percentage of members signing the petition were Locals 1303, 201, 1002, 301, 101.
The locals with the greatest improvement in membership include Locals 1001, 101 and 602. Twelve locals were honored for achieving a 75 percent or higher membership rate: Locals 1303, 1901, 1903, 301, 2101, 1902, 1701, 1002, 201, 1401, 802 and 1703.
“We often say, ‘When we fight, we win.’ When we work together and support each other, we can do great things for our union, our fellow Minnesotans and our communities,” she added.