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s a social studies teacher, I believe voting is a sacred act we have in this country. It's the one time every two years when a lot of us get to choose who represents us and what policies we, as a community, are going to support. ere were so many important things on the ballot this year; from school board members, who are vital to local unions; to propositions, ensuring that our dreamers, our students, have the ability to have in-state tuition; to re-electing Mark Kelly to the Senate; to electing Adrian Fontes as Secretary of State; and to having Katie Hobbs at the top of the ticket and elected to the highest offi ce in our state. AEA congratulates all our recommended candidates and their election victories. Even though it took awhile to get the election results, I took it as a good sign because it meant more people were voting and more people knew that this year's election is special. But, even before election night I knew who won and that is our union educators across the state who made campaigning for public education a priority for the past few months. AEA members knew before election day that the priority for this election was standing in front of a classroom full of students. It was delivering supplies to classrooms or making sure our students have amazing meals in the morning and at lunch. It was driving the bus to make sure our students arrive safely to and from school. e work you and your colleagues do every single day will continue to happen regardless of who is elected because it is the most vital and important thing. Elections are a way for us to have a voice in determining who makes major policy decisions, but I know, as a long-time veteran educator, that I'm the one who makes the most impact with my students. What I taught my students is important. e interaction I had with them is important. So, yes, elections are important, but organizing is more important. e election is over now and we're going to continue to work and organize at the site level, moving forward to make sure we have strong sites and strong unions that ensure you and your colleagues have great working conditions and that educators are treated with the respect we all deserve. at's what union are for. Elections are a way for us to choose who is going to lead our nation and state, but we already know that when it comes to our classrooms or buses or cafeterias, we are the leaders and that our work will continue. IN SOLIDARITY by Marisol Garcia AEA OFFICERS Marisol Garcia President Angela Philpot Vice President Amber Gould Treasurer AEA STAFF Randy Parraz Executive Director Sheenae Shannon Editor Roxanne Rash Graphic Design Advertising e AEA Advocate is published by the Arizona Education Association, 345 East Palm Lane, Phoenix, Arizona 85004-1532. Phone: 602- 264-1774 or 800-352-5411 Fax: 602-240-6887. Email: AEA's website may be found at Permission to reprint any material originating with this publication is granted provided that credit is given to the AEA Advocate. e AEA Advocate (ISSN 0194-8849) is published in Fall, Winter, Spring and Summer for $3.50 per year by the Arizona Education Association, 345 East Palm Lane, Phoenix, AZ 85004-1532. Periodicals postage paid at Phoenix, Arizona. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to the AEA Advocate, 345 East Palm Lane, Phoenix, AZ 85004-1532. Moving? Please let us know before you go. Simply clip your mailing label from the back of the Advocate and send it along with your new address to: AEA Advocate 345 East Palm Lane Phoenix, Arizona 85004-1532 4 ADVOCATE | WINTER 2022 work will continue. Marisol Garcia, President Arizona Education Association

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