The executive board of New York City’s teachers union elected Michael Mulgrew its new president today, an event that has been widely expected since Randi Weingarten said she would resign to focus on national issues.
Union members will get a chance to vote in a formal presidential election in 2010, when Mulgrew will run for the position he now holds. Weingarten nominated Mulgrew for the position and, with the backing of the union’s largest party, the Unity caucus, he is likely to be elected next year.
Formerly the union’s chief operating officer, Mulgrew was the only candidate nominated for the presidency. Union rules prevent regular members from offering their own nominations. Mulgrew will become president on August 1.
The UFT press release follows:
MICHAEL MULGREW ELECTED UFT PRESIDENT
The Executive Board of the United Federation of Teachers tonight voted to elect Michael Mulgrew as the UFT’s new President effective August 1. Mulgrew, who has been serving as the union’s Vice President for Career and Technical Education (CTE) High Schools since 2005 and its Chief Operating Officer since 2008, replaces outgoing president Randi Weingarten.
Mulgrew, 44, was nominated at a special meeting of the union’s Executive Board on July 9th, after Weingarten announced in late June that she would be devoting herself full time to leading the Washington DC-based American Federation of Teachers.
Michael is the fifth president of the UFT in its storied 49-year history, following Charles Cogan (1960 to 1964), Albert Shanker (1964 to 1986), Sandra Feldman (1986 to 1998) and Randi Weingarten (1998 to 2009).
“The UFT has a long and renowned history of advocacy on behalf of our city’s public school students and educators, and I am very proud and humbled to be the union’s new president,” said Mulgrew after the vote. “There are huge challenges ahead, and our team and I will work hard to continue that important work.”
“Michael is a fantastic choice,” said Weingarten. “The role of president requires tremendous strength, judiciousness, caring and savvy, and Michael has all of those qualities. His strong determination and hard work, first as a teacher, then as a chapter leader and later as a union vice president have been first-rate, and I know first-hand his intense desire to create more opportunities for children and improve the professional lives of educators. He will continue the great work this union has done for many years, and our public schools will be better and stronger for it.”
The United Federation of Teachers represents more than 200,000 active and retired members, including teachers, classroom paraprofessionals, school secretaries, attendance teachers, guidance counselors, psychologists, social workers, education evaluators, nurses, laboratory technicians, adult education teachers and home child-care providers. The UFT also runs more than 300 teacher training centers around the five boroughs as well as two charter schools.