In April 2011 the NCCFT Executive Committee began reaching out to the Administration to discuss ways we could work together to address fiscal problems facing the campus. We will present and review those efforts and discuss the results at the NCCFT Executive Board meeting on Tuesday, March 6 and again to the entire membership at the NCCFT General Membership meeting on Tuesday, March 13. We cannot emphasize the importance of your attendance at the respective meetings and ask you to make every effort to attend.
Meanwhile, we have been increasing our engagement with the Long Island Federation of Labor. On February 13, Vice-President Frank Frisenda, Dr. Stephanie Sapiie, Prof. Maryann Pervelis, Prof. Jean Miller and Ms. Dawn Smith attended the Long Island Federation of Labor Leadership Class. A presentation was made describing the historical creation of the Corporation in Western Civilization.
On March 1, President Debra DeSanto, Vice-President Frank Frisenda and Secretary Faren Siminoff attended the Long Island Federation of Labor Awards Ceremony honoring labor and labor friendly leaders from both Nassau and Suffolk County. In addition to honoring these guests, it gave us the opportunity to meet with various political policymakers and labor leaders.
In other NCCFT news: On March 2, the NCCFT Executive Committee met with Communications Coordinator Richard Newman, Legislative Liaison Stephanie Sapiie, Audit Committee Chair Caroline Falconetti, and Political Action Chair Dawn Smith along with our Labor Relations Specialist Claudia Schacter-deChabert at NYSUT headquarters to discuss the state of the college and to do important strategic planning work for the NCCFT.
Immediately following this meeting, NCCFT Political Action Chair, Dawn Smith attended a meeting with State Senator Kemp Hannon (Nassau Community College is in his district) and addressed some of the concerns we have on our campus.
NCCFT Legislative liaison, Dr. Stephanie Sapiie has been a member of the Jobs with Justice Program of the Long Island Federation of Labor. In particular, she has been working with this group, along with Dr. Astrab, College Governmental Affairs Director Chuck Cutolo, the Student Government Association and the Nassau County Legislature to make sure that the needs of the Nassau County Veolia Bus riders are recognized and addressed in a fair manner.
On March 5 and 6, Dawn Smith and Stephanie Sapiie will be in Albany, participating with NYSUT in SUNY Lobby Day. They have an ambitious schedule where they will be briefed on NYSUT’s legislative agenda for SUNY, CUNY and the Community Colleges. This will be followed by one-on-one meetings with various State Senators and Assembly members. Afterward, they will meet again with NYSUT to share the results of these meetings.
It is vitally important right now that you all stay in touch with your department’s NCCFT Exeuctive Board Representative and make every effort to attend the NCCFT General Membership meeting on March 13.
In closing we want to remember Gerry Leibowitz, a dear friend to many of us, and a very active union member. His participation in the NCCFT Operetta was known to many, but he also regularly attended the annual NYSUT Community College Conferences, and he faithfully represented the Library on the NCCFT Executive Board. At his funeral last Thursday we learned that one of his favorite songs was “Live for Today,” by the Grassroots. Today’s music is offered in his memory.