Alumni Programs

Work and Labor: Tales from the Front Lines

Time: 9:00 AM - 10:30 AM (With option to continue until 11:00 AM)
SEM II A-3107

Session Description:

The future of labor is up in the air. Come hear first-hand stories from three distinct branches of the American labor movement; The Teamsters, aerospace engineers, and public sector workers. Labor leader/activist and faculty member Sarah Ryan '92 will facilitate a robust discussion on some of the top labor issues of today, and their historical context. Teamster leader Brian Rainville '90, SPEEA director Ray Goforth '95, and students from Justice at Work: Labor, Civil Rights, Immigration and the Law will explore this complex landscape. 

Facilitator Biographies:

Ray Goforth

Ray Goforth '95: Ray graduated from Evergreen in 1995 (political economy) and the University of Washington School of Law (international and comparative law) in 1998. He spent 10 years working as a Union Representative for Professional & Technical Employees Local 17 prior to becoming Executive Director at the Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace (SPEEA), IFPTE Local 2001. At SPEEA, Ray oversees strategy and directs the day-to-day operations and staff of the largest professional aerospace labor union in the United States representing more than 26,000 aerospace engineers, technical workers, pilots and other professionals in California, Kansas, Oregon, Utah and Washington. Concurrent with his roles at the labor unions, Ray served as a member of the King County Personnel Board for 10 years (think of it as the supreme court of King County's civil service system). Besides marrying Kim, going to Evergreen was the best decision Ray ever made.

Brian Rainville

Brian Rainville '90: Brian has worked for the International Brotherhood of Teamsters since 1999. He served as the International's Assistant Director of Communications in Washington DC until 2003. He then moved to Chicago to work as the Executive Director of Joint Council 25. Prior to joining the Teamsters, he worked for several different organizations including The Olympian newspaper. He lives in Chicago's Old Town neighborhood with his wife Kathleen Gallagher and their two boys Evan and Emmett.

Sarah Ryan

Sarah Ryan '92: As a postal worker and local union elected officer in Seattle, Sarah first encountered Evergreen through its Labor Education and Research Center's Summer School for Union Women. Inspired by the college's approach to learning, she returned to school, finishing her BA in 1992. After graduate school in Labor and Industrial Relations at Rutgers, she began teaching labor studies in the Evening and Weekend Studies program and continued her postal union activism until 1998. She will be Dean of Evening and Weekend Studies starting in July of this year.

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