IAM Local Lodge 2210 President Lydia Roman and Recording Secretary Bonnie Archer participated in the Women’s Leadership Program at the William W. Winpisinger Education and Technology Center in Hollywood, Maryland this week.
General Secretary-Treasurer Dora Cervantes spoke in the Sunday afternoon session.
“I had double breast cancer twice in my life. Has it stopped me? No! I am here today. We didn’t feel sorry for ourselves. We were determined. To this day my mother says I need to rest. I say momma I am going to sleep when I die. There is work to do,“ said Cervantes, as she addressed all the attendees.
“I am with Lydia in Local Lodge 2210. We are developing a women’s program,” Bonnie Archer explained to Dora.
“Lydia is good. She has been around. I have seen her work,” said Cervantes. “So, 2210, outside of all the other locals, 2210 has been exceptional because it is one of the first run by women, controlled by women.”
Women from local and district lodges from all across the United States and Canada convened at the Winpisinger Center from October 20-26th to discuss diversity, workplace bullying, women in labor history as well as conflict resolution, establishing effective committees and a number of other topics.
In addition to hearing from Cervantes, the 26 women, representing all of the territories in the IAM, received instruction from Valana Cochran, Julie Frietchen, Mary McHugh, Dave Miskolczi and Rhonda Rogers.
“One of the main takeaways I hope people take out of this class is building leadership skills. The class is designed to build leadership,” said Education Representative Julie Frietchen.
“I want our sisters to be able to go back to the local lodge and communicate without fear. To be able to make committee reports. To make a motion. I want them to be able to advocate for other sisters,” said Director of the IAM Women’s Department, Rhonda Rogers.
Participants also practiced parliamentary procedures, including a mock meeting, guided by Education Representative Dave Miskolczi.
The week ended with a visit to IAM Headquarters and the Communications Department. In the television studio at Headquarters, the class participated in a special edition of ACTIVATE L!VE before they returned to their Locals and Districts to enact what they learned during the week and to spread the inspiration they received.
Bonnie Moeller, District 160
Banetta Jones, Local 2339