Jennifer Russell, psychology teacher and member of the Novato Federation of Teachers, AFT Local 1986, was selected as the Marin County Teacher of the Year for 2016-17 and honored for helping students learn about themselves through portfolio assignments and equipping them with skills necessary for college success in her AVID courses. Marin County’s superintendent said to her, “You have mastered the art of teaching students that achievement is much more than a number or letter.”

Jeff Freitas, CFT Secretary Treasurer, was named a Labor Leader of the Year by the Tri-Counties Central Labor Council, which represents Ventura, Santa Barbara, and San Luis Obispo counties. Freitas has served as the union’s top financial officer for six years, guiding and monitoring the CFT’s annual budget and assisting AFT local unions by providing in-depth treasurer training. He also serves as a member of the AFT Racial Equity Task Force.

Margaret Agbowo, teacher at the Berkeley Technology Academy and member of the Berkeley Federation of Teachers, AFT Local 1078, was selected as the 2016 PBS LearningMedia Lead Digital Innovator for California. The national program recognizes tech-savvy K-12 leaders who incorporate digital media into learning. Agbowo will become part of an exclusive professional community paving the way for digital media use in classrooms and enriching local teaching communities.

Tim Killikelly, CFT Vice President and leader of the City College of San Francisco faculty union, AFT Local 2121, was named the Labor Man of the Year by the San Francisco Living Wage Coalition. The local partners with the coalition, a grassroots movement of low-wage workers fighting for economic justice and healthy, livable communities.

Matt Barry, an economics and history teacher at Live Oak High School and member of the Morgan Hill Federation of Teachers, AFT Local 2022, was featured in a Capital & Main journalistic investigation into Uber’s marketing to teachers who, in need of additional income to cover basic living expenses in wealthy communities, moonlight for Uber. Read the full story and lessons learned.