By Dina Martin
Dean E. Vogel (left) will begin his term as CTA president June 26. State Council also elected Eric C. Heins (middle) as vice president and Mikki Cichocki (right) as secretary-treasurer.
The state budget crisis was very much on the minds of delegates and CTA President David A. Sanchez when State Council met in Los Angeles April 1-3.
“We are in a state of emergency, and we need to take bold action that sends a crystal clear message to Sacramento,” said Sanchez.
The delegates agreed and put forward a plan to wake up lawmakers.
CTA leadership team elected
Eric C. Heins and Mikki Cichocki were elected vice president and secretary-treasurer of CTA, respectively. Along with Dean E. Vogel, who was elected president of CTA at Council’s February meeting, they will begin their terms of office June 26.
Heins currently represents District C (Contra Costa County and part of Alameda County) on the CTA Board of Directors. A resident of San Francisco, Heins has taught elementary school in the Pittsburg Unified School District for 20 years and is a member of the Pittsburg Education Association. He has served as a CTA Board member for four years.
Cichocki (pronounced “chuh-husky”) is also a member of the CTA Board of Directors, where she has represented District O (parts of San Bernardino and Riverside counties) for almost nine years. A resident of Riverside, she is a youth services teacher in San Bernardino City Schools, and has served as president of the San Bernardino Teachers Association. She has a daughter, Olivia.
Doggett talks about attacks on middle class
On Sunday, the day before the anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., CTA Executive Director Carolyn Doggett used her morning address to talk about how some of the things King strove for are eroding today.
She made note of a few inequities:
- The average CEO earns 185 times more than the average worker.
- The richest 5 percent of Americans claim nearly 64 percent of the nation’s wealth, while the bottom 80 percent hold just 13 percent.
- The corporate share of our nation’s taxes has fallen from 30 percent of all federal revenues in the mid-1950s to 6.6 percent in 2009.
- General Electric, which had a profit of $14.2 billion, paid zero taxes in 2010.
“At the same time, 14 million Americans are without a job,” Doggett said. “Child poverty rates and homelessness are at an all-time high. Students can’t afford to go to college, and public schools are shutting their doors. This is not the America I want for my nieces and nephews.”
Doggett summoned the words Dr. King said to sanitation workers in Memphis:
“You are reminding the nation that it is a crime for people to live in this rich nation and receive starvation wages.” “The best anti-poverty program for a worker is a union.” “Now our struggle is for genuine equality, which means economic equality. For now we know that it isn’t enough to integrate lunch counters. What does it profit a man to be able to eat at an integrated lunch counter if he doesn’t earn enough money to buy a hamburger and a cup of coffee?”
She continued: “We are under attack like never before. The sharks are circling and waiting for us to flounder. It is why we must continue to have a strong CTA. A strong voice for our students… for our schools… for our colleges… our union… and our future.”
Next article: CTA presses lawmakers to approve tax extensions