Farewells, welcomes, congratulations mark media union’s annual meeting


Farewells were bid to (from left) Tim Thomson, Deborah Richmond, Martin O’Hanlon, Shawn Bussey, David Wilson, Barb Pacholik, and Deborah Service-Brewster.
Dozens of delegates and observers gathered in Vancouver April 28 to 29 for the CWA Canada National Representative Council annual meeting.

Delegates to the CWA Canada National Representative Council annual meeting held in Vancouver bid farewell to seven longtime activists, welcomed new members of the union’s executive, and applauded winners of two memorial scholarships.

The most significant departure is that of President Martin O’Hanlon, one of the founders of the media union almost 30 years ago. He completes his term of office in July and had announced some time ago that he would not seek re-election.

Others saluted at an informal reception included CWA Canada employees David Wilson and Deborah Richmond. Wilson retired last September after almost 27 years as a staff representative. Richmond, who has been web editor for 20 years, will retire at the end of June.

Deborah Service-Brewster, who has been administrative officer at the Victoria Local for 29 years, will retire in July.

Barb Pacholik, president of the Saskatchewan Media Guild, is stepping down after resigning from her longtime job as a journalist at the Regina Leader-Post shortly before the April 28-29 meeting in Vancouver.

Tim Thomson, delegate for the Northern Ontario Newspaper Guild, was laid off by Postmedia from his ad sales job at the Sudbury Star.

It was an emotional farewell to Shawn Bussey, who was representing the Windsor Typographical Union, which will cease to exist after Postmedia sold the Windsor Star’s printing plant and laid off all of the Local’s members.

There are several new Members-at-Large on CWA Canada’s Executive, three of whom won an election in a field of six candidates. Joining acclaimed incumbents Mary-Ann Barr (Secretary), Gord Holder (Treasurer), Hayley Juhl (Diversity/Equity) and Steve Llewellyn are David Arsenault, Glen Couvrette, Annick Forest, Kat McMorrow, and David Friend.

The winners of this year’s $1,000 John Belcarz & Dan Zeidler Memorial Scholarships, along with an Honourable Mention, were announced at the NRC.

Kate Black, whose essay was titled The Cost of Caring: Collective Action in the Wake of COVID-19, is pursuing a Bachelor of Education at the University of British Columbia. She is the spouse of Alex Migdal, a member of CWA Canada Local 30213 – the Canadian Media Guild (CMG).

Parya Masoudian won for her essay Breaking Barriers: A Reflection on the Route to Social Justice. She will be attending Carleton University in the Bachelor of Arts Honours program (political science, co-operative education). She is the daughter of Mohammadreza Masoudian, a CMG member who works at CBC Radio in Toronto.

An Honourable Mention went to Nuala O’Connell for her essay on social justice. She will be attending McGill University and is the daughter of Mary O’Connell, also a CMG member, and a veteran radio documentary producer.

President Martin O’Hanlon, left, swore in CWA Canada’s renewed Executive: (front) Annick Forest, David Friend; (middle) Mary-Ann Barr, Secretary, Hayley Juhl, Diversity/Equity; (back) David Arsenault, Kat McMorrow, Steve Llewellyn, Treasurer Gord Holder, and Glen Couvrette.

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