March 2017 Issue
March 30, 2017

Longtime local union president named new Regent

Author: By Sylvia Saunders
Source: NYSUT United

Regent Susan MittlerSusan Mittler, a retired teacher who served nearly two decades as Ithaca Teachers Association president, was elected to an open Regents Board seat effective April 1, replacing James Tallon. The State Legislature in March also re-elected Vice Chancellor T. Andrew Brown and Regent Nan Eileen Mead to five-year terms.

Mittler has been an educator in New York State for more than 35 years, teaching pre-K to middle school classes during the first half of her career and then students in the district's gifted and talented program. She was appointed to the New York State Professional Standards and Practices Board from 2005-13 where she focused her efforts on the development of authentic, valid assessments of educators and students. She also served on the NYSUT Policy Council for several years.

Currently, Mittler is on the faculty at Cornell University in the College of Industrial and Labor Relations in the area of collective bargaining. She earned a bachelor's degree from Cornell and a master's degree in elementary education from SUNY Cortland.

"She knows well that if we want the best for our children we have to recruit, train and then continue supporting excellent teachers who know their field and care deeply about children," said Assemblywoman Barbara Lifton, who represents Ithaca and nominated Mittler during a joint legislative session.

"Given her experience and dedication to public education, we strongly believe Susan will add an important voice and perspective to the Board of the Regents," said NYSUT Vice President Catalina Fortino, who served with Mittler on the Professional Standards and Practices Board.

Fortino noted it's important for the Regents Board to have experienced educators like Mittler. She has vowed to be a strong presence in educational institutions throughout the 6th Judicial District, which covers Broome, Chemung, Chenango, Cortland, Delaware, Madison, Otsego, Schuyler, Tioga and Tompkins counties.

NYSUT also congratulated Vice Chancellor Brown and Regent Mead on their re-elections to the state policy-making board.

Brown, a Rochester attorney who serves as an adjunct professor at SUNY Brockport and Monroe Community College, was appointed to the board in 2012 and elected vice chancellor last year.

Mead, who represents the 1st judicial district, has been a financial services industry professional for more than 20 years and served two terms as first vice chair of the New York City Schools Chancellor's Parent Advisory Council.