Douglas Cowan Holbrook, National APWU Retirees Department Director, Washington, D.C. Headquarters, swears in the newly elected Executive Board members of the APWU of Florida State Retiree Chapter, APWU, AFL-CIO for a 2-year term of office in the Plaza Ocean Club Hotel & Resort, 640 N. Atlantic Av., Daytona Beach, FL 32118 on Wed., May 10, 2006. The six (6) elected Officers receiving the oath of obligation are shown from left to right, Charlie Redd from Cocoa, Trustee; Valentine Serpico from Ft. Lauderdale, Vice President; Dave Bernstein from Tampa, Legislative Director; Ruth Wood from New Smyrna Beach, standing in for Pedro Torres of Miami, Trustee; Jack Gose from South Pasadena, President; and Mario Miceli from Clearwater, FL., Secretary-Treasurer. (Photo taken with a Kodak 800 speed Flash camera)

Twenty (20) Retiree Chapter officers and members, active officers and members, Auxiliary officers and members, and family guests attended our 3rd Biennial APWU of Florida State Retiree Executive Board Meeting and Luncheon held at the Plaza Resort and Spa and/or State Retiree Convention at the Plaza Ocean Club Hotel in Daytona Beach, Fl. on Wed., May 10, 2006. We prepared over 100 Retiree Happy Folders for the Retirees Convention and regular APWU of Florida Convention Delegates, Officers, and Families which were distributed during the twin conclaves. The folders were chock full of APWU history from our founding and fantastic, innovative ideas for the future.

The National AFL-CIO and National Alliance for Retired Americans Office were generous in providing complimentary copies of the Congressional Voting Records for 2005 and Legislative Priority Issues for 2006 booklets for distribution to all who attended the Retirees Convention and the regular APWU of Florida Convention in Daytona Beach.

The entire State Retiree Chapter Executive Board of six (6) Chapter members were unopposed in the State Chapter elections and were unanimously elected to serve a two year (2) term of office 2006-2008. Ruth B. Wood was appointed as Chairperson of the Nominations and Elections Committee. Newly elected Board members, Jack Gose, President, Valentine Serpico, Vice-President, Mario Miceli, Secretary-Treasurer, Dave Bernstein, Legislative Director, Charlie Redd, Trustee, and Pedro Torres, Trustee were administered the APWU Oath of Office by Douglas Cowan Holbrook, National APWU Retirees Department Director from Washington, D.C. Douglas C. Holbrook was our main invited guest speaker at the luncheon and the Retiree Convention, and he answered many questions from those in attendance concerning a wide range of retiree issues for the active, retiree, and family members.

Many cash door prizes, APWU Parade of States pin and button collectible prizes, and APWU of Florida brief cases were given to nine (9) lucky winners present at the luncheon. Retiree Convention COPA 50/50 total collections amounted to $80.00 with seven (7) Retirees in attendance or an average of $11.43 per Retiree, with our thanks to Dave Bernstein, newly elected Legislative Director for the parent APWU of Florida active organization, who conducted the ticket sales. Retiree resolutions and Constitution and By-Laws changes were discussed, debated, and adopted unanimously. They were also adopted by the APWU of Florida regular Convention Delegates and now go on to the National APWU to be considered in Philadelphia, PA at the National APWU Retirees Conference and regular National APWU Convention in August, 2006.

We introduced a COPA Challenge by contributing $35.00 in separate water glasses at the podium on Saturday, the final day of the regular Convention which brought our total COPA collections to over $3,000. during 4 days of Conventions, Thanks to Everyone!

J.C. Wise, Retiree Chapter member from Tampa Area Local, was appointed to the position of Health Plan Director of the APWU of Florida State Retiree Chapter. J.C. will work under the direction of the Chapter President and report on Federal Employee Health Benefit Plans including APWU and Tri Care Health Plan issues. He will give reports at APWU seminars, conventions, and meetings he attends, and he is encouraged to write articles in APWU newsletters and the media on matters of interest to APWU Retiree Chapter members and their families.

Beth Cramer, Retiree Chapter member from Southwest Florida Area Local, was reappointed to the position of Benefits Director of the APWU of Florida State Retiree Chapter, and we expect to see and hear a lot from Beth at the National APWU Convention floor microphones in Philadelphia. The offices of Health Plan Director and Benefits Director will become elected positions at the 2008 Biennial State Retiree Chapter Convention by actions taken by the Chapter Delegates in Daytona Beach.

Tony Fransetta, President, Florida Alliance for Retired Americans (FLARA) which has over 220,000 dues paying members in the State of Florida (equal to our National APWU membership) was one of our invited guest speakers at the Chapter EB meeting, luncheon, and Convention. A motion was passed unanimously to affiliate the entire statewide APWU of Florida Retiree Chapter $24.00 year membership residing in the State of Florida who pay union dues to the National APWU Retirees Department, currently about 3,000 members in zip codes 320 thru 349, with the Florida Alliance for Retired Americans (FLARA) by paying annual dues in advance at 25 cents per capita, per member, per year from APWU of Florida State Retiree Chapter funds.

One of the State Retiree Chapter’s paramount goals is to educate 15,000 APWU of Florida members and their families on electoral reform, and encourage the participation and exercise of our voting rights as Americans in all local, city, county, state, regional, and national elections of officials, stressing the importance of VOTING BY ABSENTEE BALLOT to MAKE YOUR VOTE COUNT in the results.

Thanks to the APWU of Florida State Retiree Chapter Executive Board Officers, Delegates, and Family guests for the most wonderful expressions of unity and solidarity we have ever seen at any APWU Retiree and active Convention. It was nice dining and/or rooming with former State Presidents Mario Miceli and Charlie Redd, former Daytona Beach Area Local President Joe Mazzarelli, Val Serpico from Fort Lauderdale, Dave Bernstein, Frank and Christine Mizurek, and Ruth B. Wood. Congratulations to all the newly elected Officers and National Delegates of the APWU of Florida, and State Retiree Chapter. We wish to thank the Convention Delegates in Daytona Beach for electing this Young Warrior of 40 years dedication and commitment to the APWU of Florida rank and file membership as State Delegate to the 18th Biennial APWU Convention! We love you and Hope to see you in Philadelphia in August, 2006!

Jack Gose, President, APWU of Florida State Retiree Chapter, AFL-CIO

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