Union Leaders


Union Leaders

Every other year, delegates to the CFT Convention elect the President, Secretary Treasurer and 24 Vice Presidents. The officers and presidents of the five Division Councils comprise the CFT Executive Council.


Universities Council President Mia McIver sets tone for newly named council

For many years, CFT’s Universities Council included nine local unions at University of California campuses. Over the last several months, our Universities Council has been reconstituted and relaunched, thanks to two recent developments.

First, the nine separate unions of UC-AFT unified into one single union, Local 1474. The unification generated more power and strength for UC librarians and contingent faculty, but eliminated the need for a Council that brings together multiple locals.



Jeffery M. Freitas was elected CFT President in March 2019 after serving as CFT Secretary Treasurer for eight years. A credentialed secondary math teacher, Freitas has advocated on behalf of members and the education community for more than two decades as president of the Carpinteria Association of United School Employees, AFT Local 2216, and as a field representative and lobbyist for the CFT. In his role as CFT President, Freitas serves as a Vice President of the AFT and the California Labor Federation, a member of the Governor’s Council for Post-Secondary Education, and a board member of Equality California.



Secretary Treasurer

L. Lacy Barnes, serves as CFT Secretary Treasurer. Prior to this position, Barnes served as CFT Senior Vice President. Barnes holds a doctorate and is an instructor of psychology at Madera Community College; she is former president of the State Center Federation of Teachers, AFT Local 1533, representing full-and part-time faculty at Clovis Community, Fresno City, Madera Community, and Reedley Colleges in the Central Valley.


Executive Vice President

Juan Ramirez serves as CFT’s Executive Vice President. Prior to this position, Ramirez served as UTLA’s AFT Vice President. Ramirez has 24 years of teaching experience in kindergarten and grades second through fourth. He also taught adult education for nine years.


Vice Presidents

The vice presidents typically hold leadership positions in their local unions, and together they represent the broad spectrum of educators and support staff represented by the CFT. 


Division Council Leaders

Experienced educators lead each of the CFT’s five division councils. Representatives from constituent local unions of each division elect their council leaders in biennial elections.


Steve McDougall is president of CFT’s Early Childhood/TK Council 12th-grade education division council of locals. He is a rank and file member of the Salinas Valley Federation of Teachers Local 1020 and has served in numerous leadership roles since 2006, including local president and chief negotiator. 


Carl Williams is president of the Council of Classified Employees, the division representing paraprofessionals and support staff. Williams leads the Lawndale Federation of Classified Employees, AFT Local 4529, representing staff at in the Lawndale Elementary School District, where he works as a custodian.



Jim Mahler is president of the Community College Council and leader of the AFT Guild, Local 1931. He serves on the executive board of the San Diego-Imperial Counties Labor Council and teaches engineering, math and physics in the San Diego Community College District.



Mia McIver is president of the CFT Universities Council and past president of UC-AFT Local 1474. Mia teaches at UCLA. 



Dennis Kelly is president of the CFT Council of Retired Members. He is currently chair of UESF Retired Division. Formerly, he was UESF president; AFT & CFT vice president; 26 year CFT parliamentarian; SF Labor Council Executive Board; and a 35 year classroom teacher. Kelly received the Ben Rust award in 2018.