Martin Messner, NYSUT's secretary-treasurer since April 2014, is known as a staunch proponent of grassroots unionism, community outreach and being proactive on issues related to public education.
Messner heads up the NYSUT Local Action Project, a three-year program that assists locals in developing and enhancing their membership involvement, political action, community outreach and communications.
He also heads up the NYSUT Leadership Institute, a biennial program that trains and develops local leaders in labor history, leadership and coalition building.
As the union's secretary-treasurer, Messner serves as chair of the NYSUT Member Benefits Trust, a program that serves NYSUT's 600,000 members and offers more than 50 endorsed programs and services.
He is also chair of the NYSUT Employees' Retirement Plan; the NYSUT Plan for Former Employees of NEA NY; NYSUT Financial Review Committee; VOTE-COPE Committee; and the NYSUT Disaster Relief and Scholarship Fund.
A past president of the Schoharie Teachers' Association, Messner taught health and physical education in Schoharie for 11 years at both the junior and senior high school levels.
Messner was honored with an American Federation of Teachers Everyday Hero Award in 2012 for his efforts to rebuild his community during Hurricane Irene and in its aftermath. He is a graduate of the NYSUT and AFL-CIO Leadership Institutes and has served on various NYSUT working groups and task forces.