Christine O’Connell

Christine O’Connell

Current job title: President, Union of Rutgers Administrators-American Federation of Unions (URA-AFT)

Local: 1766 / Union of Rutgers Administrators

Union positions: AFTNJ Higher Education Vice President (2020)
Middlesex AFL-CIO Vice President (2020)
Executive Board member, Grievance Committee member, Organizing Committee member, Health and Safety Committee member, URA President (2019)
Lead Steward Off Campus (2010-19)
Steward Off Campus (2010)

My union story: As a first-generation immigrant, I saw family members that were taken advantage of at work because they didn’t have an advocate to help them in times of need.  Having a union be their advocate would have been tremendously helpful, and I pledge to be our members’ person to help when called upon. 

Career highlights/achievements: Being elected president in 2019 and negotiating a successful contract.

Looking ahead: I would like to get through the COVID-19 pandemic with all of our members jobs intact and in optimum health.  As we begin to plan our list of demands for our next contract, I want to negotiate for a stronger contract that encompasses all the needs that we have identified because of the pandemic.  I also want to develop a strong sense of union among our members so we can build the next generation of activists and leaders.