Stewards Attend Training Conference, Get News of Extra Benefit
Stewards from courthouses across Massachusetts gathered in Marlborough in late May for a training conference, and were rewarded with an announcement about an extra educational benefit available to NAGE members.
“We bring together all of our Trial Court stewards and leaders to make sure everyone’s up to date on everything that’s happening,” said David Bernard, NAGE’s Trial Court director. “It’s a chance for new stewards to talk to experienced stewards and for everyone to hear the latest news from the experts.”
Approximately 70 stewards from probation and court security listened to presentations from the NAGE legislative team of Ray McGrath and Jim Redmond. Longtime negotiator and trainer Dick Anderson advised stewards on their responsibilities and the best ways to carry them out.
There was also a presentation from Joe Mercurio, the vice president for administration and finance from Quincy College. Quincy College and NAGE are working together to provide opportunities for NAGE members to pursue associates degrees, credits towards bachelors degrees, and professional certificates and continuing education. Quincy College had initially offered a scholarship of $1,000 per year to NAGE members who enrolled. At the conference, Mercurio announced that the benefit has been increased to $1,500, applicable in increments of $150 per course.
After the lunch break, the probation stewards gathered in one area to have a Q&A session facilitated by Local 229 President Margaret Thompson. “It’s wonderful to see familiar faces and welcome the new stewards into their roles as advocates for members,” said Thompson. “I want to enhance our communication. My door is open for them, and I’m looking forward to us working together for the benefit of our members.”
Court officers and associate court officers met after lunch with Jeff Morrow, the new director of security for the Trial Court. “We talked a lot about the future of court security, what we can do now and what we hope we can do down the road,” said Dave Abbott, president of Local 458. “I want to thank Jeff for participating. He’s already had a positive effect on the security department and we’re going in a good direction.”