April 03, 2014

Donesa Jackson & Pete McMahon: Retiree Members of the Year

Source: NYSUT Communications

Donesa Jackson
United Federation of Teachers/Retiree Council 24


"Once a union member, always a union member," said Donesa Jackson, UFT Retiree Section coordinator for Orlando, Florida. Prior to her retirement in 1996, Jackson was a chapter leader at PS 89 in the Bronx for many years. She was an education liaison at the Bronx Teacher Center, working with new teachers on certification issues. She served as a part-time pension consultant, and salary and licensing adviser at the UFT Bronx Office.

Jackson remains active in retirement, serving as the UFT's retiree leader in the Orlando area of Orange and Seminole counties; on the Orlando Central Labor Council; regularly coordinating with the American Federation of Teachers/Florida Education Association locals on issues and campaigns; and establishing a local chapter of the Alliance for Retired Americans. Due to her activism and political leadership, Jackson was a 2012 elected delegate to the Democratic National Convention.

Pete McMahon
Red Hook Faculty Association/Retiree Council 13


Pete McMahon began his union career as a building representative, and was on the negotiating committee for the Red Hook Faculty Association, beginning in 1971. He served on the negotiating committee his entire career. He was elected vice president and then was local president for nearly 20 years, starting in 1980. McMahon's activism extended far beyond his retirement in 2006.

He became the NYSUT VOTE-COPE coordinator for the Mid- Hudson region in 1981 and served on the statewide VOTECOPE committee until 2014. Likewise he served on the Political Action Committee from the late 1980s until last year. After retirement, McMahon was appointed to NYSUT's Retiree Advisory Committee, and he is now serving his third term. He has served many years as the treasurer of Retiree Council 13. He exemplifies union leadership, commitment and activism. NYSUT is a stronger organization because of his hard work and dedication to union matters.

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