Gordon has served the Union in many capacities prior to being elected president in 2007. Gordon started working for Legal Services of New York as a paralegal in 1985. During his three years at legal services, he participated on the Bargaining Team and held leadership positions within his shop. In 1988 Gordon joined the NOLSW staff as an organizer. In 2001 he was elected Recording Secretary.
During Gordon's tenure with NOLSW/UAW Local 2320 he assisted members in negotiating contracts, processing grievances, testifying in the legislature, lobbying for legal services and what most of our members know about him, is that he is the person who does the Financial Training workshops at our National Joint Council meetings.
Pam joined the staff of NOLSW in February 2008 as the mid-Atlantic organizer. Previously, Pam worked as a staff attorney at the Maryland Legal Aid Bureau (MDLAB). While she was at MDLAB, Pam served on the healthcare committee and bargaining committee and also processed grievances.
As an attorney with MDLAB, Pam represented clients in federal and state public benefits cases. Her involvement with NOLSW at MDLAB led her to an interest in labor law. She left MDLAB in 2006 to take a position as National Negotiator for the National Treasury Employees Union where she negotiated contracts with federal agencies and prosecuted national grievances.
In October, 2012, Pam was appointed to serve as Financial Secretary/Treasurer by the National Executive Board, and was elected to that position in 2013.
Robert has been an attorney with Texas RioGrande Legal Aid (TRLA) since May 2000. He has been chairperson of his unit, Texas Legal Services Union (TLSU) since November 2004. During his tenure as chairperson, he led a successful membership drive and contract struggle that resulted in equalization of wages for all employees (there were five programs prior to the merger). Robert is active in political campaigns and has participated in many Texas campaigns. Prior to working for TRLA, Robert worked in the Texas Department of Elections and practiced law in a private firm.
Robert's goal for the Union is to increase membership and participation.
Vicki is a Senior Case Manager in the Homeless Prevention program at Heartland Alliance. Heartland Alliance is a social service agency that provides assistance to low and moderate income people in such areas as housing, medical services, supportive services to seniors and children, job training and financial assistance. Vicki began to work for the agency in 1982 and has worked in most of the programs at Heartland Alliance.
Vicki was one of the orginial workers that organized the program in 1984. Since that time Vicki has served her unit as chairperson, union representative, grievance handler and on the bargaining team. She is now the National Vice-president for Human Services and is also one of the three trustees that make sure our finances and records are in order. Vicki is looking forward to retirement so she can spend more time with her four grandsons and one granddaughter.
Elaine joined the NOLSW staff as an organizer in April 2000. She has been a UAW member since 1980 when she worked as a machinist in an aerospace plant. During that tenure, she worked on contract action committees and was the Chairperson of the Women's Committee. She was the main named plaintiff in a class action lawsuit on sexual discrimination, which ultimately won $1.5 million for the women workers at the plant.
Elaine was laid off from the aerospace plant in the early 1990's and became a bankruptcy paralegal before joining the NOLSW staff. When Elaine is not working, she enjoys spending time with her husband Gene. She is active politically in many progressive causes.
David has been the Northeast Regional Vice President of NOLSW since 2008. He has been a legal services lawyer and NOLSW member since 1992.
David served as the second unit chair of the statewide Maryland Legal Aid Workers Union (MDLAW) for two and a half years in the mid-1990s. He was a member of the bargaining team that successfully negotiated a first-ever collective bargaining agreement in the fall of 1996, following a five-year fight with the late Executive Director, Charles Dorsey. By the time David left the program in 1999, after leading negotiations for a salary reopener and a second collective bargaining agreement, salaries of MDLAW members had increased by 50 percent.
David left Maryland for a job with Camden Regional Legal Services, now known as South Jersey Legal Services. A year later, David became chair of the Legal Services Staff Association (LSSA), the attorney’s union at Camden Regional, and chaired the bargaining team. With the assistance of then Regional Organizer Gordon Deane at the bargaining table, he led three separate negotiations, against three different Executive Directors, which increased salaries of LSSA members by 25 percent over a four-year period. One key to the union’s success was a strike vote taken by the members, organized by David and the rest of LSSA leadership.
David is one of the founders of New Jersey United, a coalition of NOLSW’s New Jersey units formed in response to the decision of the Legal Services Corporation (LSC) in January 2002 to merge 12 New Jersey legal services programs into 6 programs. Representatives of the various NOLSW units came together, concerned that the management of newly merged programs would not honor existing collective bargaining units and agreements. They held a meeting with the President of Legal Services of New Jersey (LSNJ), the primary funding entity in New Jersey. NJ United also drafted merger principles, most of which were later adopted by LSNJ, and encouraged local programs to honor existing collective bargaining units and contracts. David chaired New Jersey United until 2005.
David comes from union roots. His mother was a unionized public school teacher in Brooklyn, NY and Montgomery County, Maryland. His father, a civil engineer, was a unionized federal employee. His paternal grandfather was a teamster, and his maternal grandmother organized garment workers on the lower east side of New York. David was born in Brooklyn, NY. He grew up in Rockville, MD, outside of Washington, DC, and attended college in Boston, MA. He practiced as a legal services attorney in Southern Maryland; Baltimore, MD; and throughout South Jersey. He lives in Philadelphia, PA.
Pete Savino has been a Hearings Investigator at the Santa Monica Rent Control Board since 1985. Pete’s responsibilities include investigating conditions of rental units, certifying that property owners are complying with the law and verifying rent applications.
Pete is presently the Unit Chairperson and in the past has served his unit in many capacities including serving on the Bargaining Team and as Grievance Handler. Pete is known for his persistence in getting justice for members as wells as his clients.
When Pete is not working, he participates in a chess club and shoots pool.
Pat has been a NOLSW member since 1986. She has served her unit as , chairperson from 1988-2002 and has been on the bargaining team many times. She was the main force behind unifying the legal services programs in Colorado and setting up a statewide union. Pat began working at Metropolitan Denver Legal Services, now Colorado Legal Services as a secretary and then became a paralegal for public benefits.
Pat would like to see every legal services worker in the United States join NOLSW. She thinks that people who believe in equal access to justice and people who believe in unions for workers are a great partnership. When not a work, Pat enjoys spending time with her husband Dennis, her five children and ten grandchildren.
Mary Ellen has been a public benefits paralegal with Southeast Ohio Legal Services (SEOLS) since 1980. Mary Ellen is one of the orginal members who organized the Union at SEOLS. She has served her unit as chairperson and on the bargaining committee. She is the Midwest Vice-President and also one of three trustees who verify the Union's finances and records.
Mary Ellen lives with her husband and 90-year old mother on a working organic farm that raises beef cattle and grows various varieties of berries. She has been asked to testify many times at the state level on issues affecting low-income persons in Ohio.
Jeff is a founding member of NOLSW. He wrote NOLSW's original constitution and bylaws and chaired the founding convention. Over more than 30 years of active membership, Jeff has served as an officer including, chairperson, secretary, and tresurer in two local bargaining units. He has been a member of numerous bargaining teams, handled grievances, organized local activities and actions, and lobbied for increased funding for Legal Services.
Jeff has served as the Southeast Region as its Vice President for more than 20 years working with national staff to build NOLSW's presence in the South; and as a national officer has been the chief of the Trustees, who along with the other two Trustees is responsible for the auditing of the national books twice a year. He is a local community and national activisit for more than 40 years and a member of the Steering Committee of the National Lawyer's Guild's Miliatry Law Task Force of many years.
Jeff was a staff attorney with the Legal Aid Society in Louisville, KY, from 1980 until he retired at the end of 2008. He continues to be an active NOLSW/UAW Local 2320 as a retiree.
Tim began working in legal services at the H.E.L.P. office in Davenport, Iowa in 1977. In 1978, he became an attorney for the program, and worked in several offices of the Legal Services Corporation of Iowa (LSCI) over the next 11 years. While at LSCI, he served as vice-chair of his unit, the Legal Services Workers in Iowa. In 1991, he joined the staff of NOLSW/UAW Local 2320 as an organizer. In 1998, he became Recording Secretary, and in 2001 was elected Financial-Secretary/Treasurer.
In 2011, Tim was ordained as a priest in the Episcopal Church, and in 2012 he took on responsibilty for serving a small inner-city church on the West Side of Chicago. In order to free up time and energy for that assignment, he requested to be relieved of his duties as Financial Secretary/Treasurer, and so in October of 2012 returned to his previous position as Regional Organizer. Pam Smith was elected as his successor in the national officer position.
Tim is based in Chicago. When he is not working, he spends time with his wife Caroline and hangs out online with his college-age daughter Ayshe. He is active in politics and progressive causes, and serves as the Secretary of the Episcopal Peace Fellowship. Tim plays several muscial instruments, but most people know him as a bagpipe player.
John joined the NOLSW staff in 1994 as a midwest organizer. Prior to that time, he was president of Local 1834 of the United States Steelworkers that represented the workers at the Pullman plant in south Chicago.
As president, he led the fight to keep the plant open by organizing numerous rallies, meetings, press conferences and lobbying efforts. During the struggle to keep the plant open, he appeared on the Phil Donohue show and was featured in the documentary film "The Last Pullman Car." While the plant ultimately closed John led the union in keeping the plant open for two more years. John notes that Eugene V. Debs was the first president of the union at Pullman and he was the last.
Joe is a former legal services attorney who spent three years working at Northeast New Jersey Legal Services (NNJLS). While a staff attorney at NNJLS and its predecessor program, Joe was active in the bargaining unit and held the role of chairperson in 2002 and vice-chairperson from 2003 through 2004.
In 2002, he helped assure that all bargaining unit members retained their jobs when his program merged with two others to form NNJLS. Joe has also been active in New Jersey United, an ad hoc group of organized legal services workers in New Jersey.
Donis joined the NOLSW staff as an the West Coast Organizer in January 2008. Donis had been a staff attorney at the Maryland Legal Aid Bureau (MDLAB) for five years. While at MDLAB, Donis was the unit chairperson, on the bargaining committee, handled grievances, testified and lobbied for increased legal services and worked with the Community Action Program (CAP), the political action committee of the UAW. Donis also worked as a community organizer for the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN).
Susan joined the NOLSW/UAW Local 2320 staff in February 2008 as the Northeast Organizer. Prior to beginning work for NOLSW, Susan worked as an advocate for health issues as Director of the Western Massachusetts Coalition on Occupational Safety and Health. Susan also served as the Coordinator of the Labor Advisory Committee of the Alliance for a Healthy Tomorrow. Susan worked closely with the AFL-CIO and other organizations to improve the health and safety of Massachusetts' workers.
Prior to working as an advocate for health and safety issues, Susan worked as a legal intern at Western Massachusetts Legal Services. Susan also was a member of a UAW local where she was on the bargaining committee, represented members in grievances and conducted steward trainings.
Diane began working for NOLSW in 1997 on a part-time basis. She joined the staff as a full-time employee in 2000. From 1976 to 1990, she worked for Local 15 of the National Association of Broadcast Engineers as the assistant treasurer. Diane brings to the Union years of expertise in union financial issues. She, along with her assistant Ellen, carries out the adminstrative functions of the Union.
When Diane is not working, she spends her time with her three children, six granddaughters and her cats Chino and Daisy. She is also a member of the Harley Owners Group (HOG) which is a motorcycle club in Long Island.
Ellen joined the staff of NOLSW/UAW Local 2320 as an Administrative Assistant in August 2006. Prior to that time, she worked for Local 15 of the National Association of Broadcast Engineers as an Administrative Assistant in the Pension and Welfare division. Ellen maintains the membership files and records and deposits dues for our Union. She also assists Diane with the day-to-day running of the office.
Ellen is a sports fan with two daughters. When she is not working, she enjoys going to rock concerts.
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