Opening Statement



Thursday, 3 May 2012

TSU Election 2012 Begins!

Yes! It's official! As of 5pm today the nominations are closed for our 2012 TSU executive elections. I am very happy and honoured to have been acclaimed your TSU 3rd Vice President for another term. I look forward to continuing to provide service and information for you as your union executive representative.

Relieved of having to mount another election campaign, Janet, Sparky and I headed out to Makimono's at Weston Rd and Hwy 7 for Sushi and rolls tonight, over some good cheer and excited speculation on this year's election race.

Since I am acclaimed I will not have to race to announce my TSU goals and plans for next year. I will of course continue to explain and develop them for you here on my blogspot both during the election and afterwards, as always. If you check my Blog Archive below this column you will also find over 100 postings on my teacher and union news and views on pretty much everything I planned to address as of a year ago in my Blog Manifesto. I may provide an updated statement soon, and will also post an updated resume here in the sidebar, when I get a chance.

For now though, let me announce the official beginning of my Blogspot TSU Election Coverage. It will run through until election day on May 23. You might consider this Who Speaks for Teachers?More to follow, but where to begin?

Here's an overview of the candidates for each of the TSU executive positions:

PRESIDENT:

Rene Jansen [TSU officer] is our incumbent president, riding a voter wave into office for the last two terms on a TSU platform of modernization and positive change.You might consider Rene our "big picture" guy.

Ian Hedley [Senator O'Connor] returns to the TSU political scene with a run for active office duty at the top. Ian packs a solid resume of TSU involvement from a few years past. It will be interesting to see what ideas and vision he plans to bring to the presidential election race this year.

1st VP:

No incumbent here! Note Gerard Ardanaz is not running this year and probably is looking forward to a well earned rest, not that he won't be still doing lots of other things around the unit and elsewhere. Enjoy your first summer off in 4 years Gerard! You've certainly earned it!

Frank Bruno [TSU officer] steps up as this year's 2nd VP for a run at the 1st VP spot. With a thick resume, a solid reputation in Health and Safety, and as frequent TSU flag carrier at our labour and provincial politic meets, he seems quite ready for the race for 1st. Frank is one of the strongest campaigners I know, so this should be an especially interesting race!

Dave Szollosy [BMT] is a well known labour and social justice advocate. He has been a campaign manager for many of us here and at OECTA provincial over the years, and also brings with him experience in municipal politics. It's hard not to like and respect Dave for his strong heartfelt advocacy, agree or disagree with his stand on many issues. We might do well to drill both Dave and Frank on Labour issues as we proceed into our contract negotiations before our present board contract expires on August 31st!

2nd VP:

No incumbent. Frank has stepped up.

Ottavio Ariganello [Dante] looks set to throw his all into this year's race in his reach for second. Committee experience and many years of service as a Guidance Counsellor provides him with an interesting set of skills to make his case. You may well recognize Ottavio, many of us have seen him around, he's a familiar face.

Gillian Vivona [Basil's] is Mrs. SSAC/ LSAC at TSU, our schools and even trumps our board in her knowledge and efforts to put staffing issues on a solid footing, as per our contract. She is also our Collective Bargaining Executive Liaison this year, a very poignant portfolio. She is well known as a very hard worker.

3rd VP: Me again. Acclaimed.

TREASURER: No contest.

Rosemary Lavery [Brebeuf] completes a solid first year of her term and the position is not up again until next year.

SECRETARY:

No Incumbent. Gillian has stepped up.

Melissa Ammendolia [Basil's] is a promising local union figure in her school who's out to show us what she can do. As one of our newer [but not a Beginning] teachers she brings a fresh promising new face to our election race.

Ewa Lipinski [Henry Carr] is a tireless worker in our union activities who is taking another run for this position. Perhaps her years of effort and service will finally pay off? This should be a very interesting race.

COUNCILLOR:

You can vote for 3:

Bianka Hudec and Luigi Martelli are our 2 incumbents

Bianka Hudec [St. Mary's] has been a strong teacher political advocate in our Ontario provincial election and government lobbying campaigns since 2003. She is also involved with women's issues at the Queen's Park level. She also has been very active as editor and at the executive level on Highlights for the past few years.

Luigi Martelli [Brebeuf] has been an active TSU PAC political campaigner, who like many of our candidates also has direct experience from the Harris Years. Luigi was first elected last May after many years service at TSU. He has taken on the steep learning curve as executive liaison for many of our committees, no small challenge and accomplishment for his first year in office.

Pete McKay [McLuhan] brings years of experience with him as staff rep and on many of our committees. A regular face around TSU, our AGM's and various unit activities, Pete is actively involved in Labour issues and CB. IMHO his run for office is long overdue and he is another welcome addition to this year's race.

Michael Nicolaidis [Fraser] has pretty much come out of the blue at TSU for his first and all ready very active run for office. Of course we always want to keep strongly in touch with our grassroots on executive. Apparently Michael has an extensive background and qualifications in Labour so we look forward to learning more.

Steve Watson [O'Connor] is a familiar TSU face seeking a return to executive office. He has continued to be very active on the Labour, Human Rights, Social Justice and many other fronts. He's definitely a very experienced OECTA TSU AGM/ UAGM trooper who brings a wealth of teacher and union knowledge and experience to the race.

So there you go folks! Please note you will need to look over each candidates resumes for the full complete facts. This is just a taster, some off the top observations. Also come meet them, hear their speeches, and enter into a member Q+A with each at our May 16 AGM. As always, the views expressed here are my own. I will continue to try to always be fair and balanced in my election coverage, while providing my teacher news and views service for you on this blog service.

I intend for the majority of my TSU Election Coverage to be member issue, service and unit vision based. I aim to keep it always interesting. I will share my insights as a fellow teacher and as your TSU 3rd Vp to help you decide for yourself who can best fill each position when you vote on May 23.

Please stay tuned! You will find photos, blogs and video links to my new Davechiarelli Youtube Channel here at my blogsite. It promises to be a very interesting race ahead and it might not always be easy to choose amongst so many good candidates! So get your telephones and cellphones ready......the election race is on!

Good luck everybody, and may the best candidates win!

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