From the Trustees

As the Trusteeship of Local 695 continues, the Trustees would like to report on the changes that have been made at the Local.

If you have been by the Local lately, you likely have noticed some new faces in accounting. Nicole Riordan has taken over as bookkeeper. Nikki comes to us with an AA in Business Administration and a strong background in IT. She is proving to be a valuable asset in our efforts to update and modernize the Local 695 computer network. In addition to her duties here, she is continuing her education and expects to earn her BS in Business Management from CSUN in 2015.

It is with great reluctance that we report that Leslie Otsuki has decided to move on from the Local. She has worked for Local 695 for thirty years and she will be greatly missed. However, we are pleased to report that her post will be filled by Linda Skinner, a 695 alumna. Leslie is working with Linda to bring her up to speed.

Donna Gamble-Ramirez continues to hold the office together and is spearheading the effort to bring about a more organized and efficient local union. Hundreds of boxes of un-filed documents have been cataloged, barcoded and moved to a secure off-site document storage facility, all under Donna’s watchful eye. A lot has been done and there is much more to do.

The Local’s accounting software has been updated to QuickBooks for a more efficient accounting of the Local’s finances. The next step is to update the network and hardware. Scott Bernard and Laurence Abrams have contacted no fewer than five vendors to compete for the project.

The Local’s training classes continue uninterrupted. In fact, a class on RF microphone usage has been added and has had its first two sessions.

Those of you that have called the office for assistance and have spoken to Joe Aredas Jr., will recognize that he brings a calm, steady and knowledgeable voice when dealing with member issues. A word of caution to any employer that would mistake Joe’s calm demeanor for a lack of resolve on the part of the union; he is passionate and tenacious when it comes to defending the members of this Alliance.

Scott has taken well to his new position. When he is not on the phone with members or employers, he has been evaluating all of the longstanding arrangements with vendors that do business with the Local. Whether it is the phones or the copy machines and many things in between, he has been able to cut costs while improving service. It seems that negotiating is not just for the bargaining table.

With the office operating more smoothly, we can turn our attention to revitalizing the building. The new sign out front is just the beginning.

We are looking forward to seeing all of you. As always, you are welcome to stop by and talk with the Trustees, to see some old friends or to make new ones.

In Solidarity,
Mike, Steve and Peter