Andrea Johnson, a 30-year veteran teacher in the Hartford public school system and first vice president of the teachers' union's executive board, was elected president of the Hartford Federation of Teachers Wednesday night. She will serve a two-year term beginning July 1.
Johnson defeated Joe Troiano, a 20-year teaching veteran and the federation's current vice president for special projects, by a 791-537 vote.
Johnson is replacing outgoing federation President Cathy Carpino, who led the 2,500-member Local 1018 for the past four years. Carpino chose not to seek re-election.
Johnson ran as part of the "HFT Unity Slate," which swept every seat on the executive board in an election noted for its extremely low turnout.
Some union leaders attributed the dismal turnout to increased workloads and sweeping changes in the district that have left teachers too exhausted to get involved.
But others speculated that younger teachers may be leery of getting involved in union matters because they are worried about how their affiliation might affect their jobs in the hyper-competitive work climate.
The other executive board members elected Wednesday were: First Vice President Joshua M. Hall; Second Vice President J. Edward Gutierrez; Third Vice President Zoraida Ortiz-Gibson; Secretary Maryanne Martin; and Treasurer Marie Thibodeau.
Reprinted with permission of the Hartford Courant.
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