Fall 2015

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For Members N E W S , I N F O R M AT I O N A N D B E N E F I T S 16 SAG-AFTRA | Fall 2015 | MEMBERS CHOOSE PRESIDENT AND SECRETARY-TREASURER S AG-AFTRA President Ken Howard has been re-elected as the union's top officer. During the August elections, members chose Howard to lead the union for another two-year term, and elected Jane Austin as the union's new secretary-treasurer. Howard, elected Screen Actors Guild president in 2009, was instrumental in the effort to merge SAG and AFTRA and became co-president following the merger. He became the first elected president of SAG-AFTRA in 2013 and was re-elected this year. "Serving the members of Screen Actors Guild and now SAG-AFTRA has been one of the greatest privileges of my life as an actor. I am honored and grateful to the members for their confidence in our team. From merger to contract gains and beyond, we have together built a strong union that is focused on economic security and opportunity for members. But the fight to protect performers is never over and I am eager to continue it. I thank the members for their support and I'm excited to get back to work," he said. Austin, a stunt performer and the co-owner of Hollywood Stuntworks, is a new face among SAG-AFTRA's top officers. She has served 12 years on SAG-AFTRA's board and the boards of its predecessor unions. "The union's financial well-being is key to its success, and I want to thank the members for entrusting me with this tremendous responsibility. Working with President Howard and the National Board, I am confident we can ensure a strong and secure future for members," she said. KEN HOWARD JANE AUSTIN NATIONAL BOARD MEETS IN L.A. F resh off the success of SAG-AFTRA's second biennial national convention, an energized leadership team convened the first post-election National Board meeting in Los Angeles on Oct. 5 and 6. The convention's theme of Educate, Engage, Empower was carried forward to the business at hand, as the new board was infused with new blood and fresh ideas. President Ken Howard offered a recap of the convention, which took place in Los Angeles Oct. 1–4, and emphasized the importance of member involvement. "If our first convention was about celebrating our merger and setting a path for our new union, this second convention was about recognizing our achievements and leveraging our strengths. Member engagement and empowerment are the heart of organizing," said Howard. "Our delegates are committed to these ideals and to carrying this message of action back to their members in locals across the country." That spirit of engagement was reflected in the appointment of committee members and chairs to newly reconstituted national committees. Committee service is one of the best ways for members to get involved in union business, whether it's at the national or local level, and the work of these committees is critical to the union's continued success. The board also set dates for the Wages and Working Conditions (W&W) process for the Commercials Contracts, which began Oct. 19 and concludes in late November. The W&W process, in which member feedback helps set priorities for the negotiation process, is another important way in which rank-and-file members' input guides the union's direction and substantially impacts their lives. In other business, National Executive Director David White presented a report on the union's operations and strategic initiatives. Joined by Chief Economist David Viviano, White reported on membership trends, earnings and claims resolved. The 2015-2017 National Board met immediately following the national convention. For a gallery of the elected national vice presidents and board, see page 18.

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