In June, nominations were held to serve as a delegate to the AFSCME 2020 Virtual Convention, and 14 members accepted the opportunity to represent UPW. The biannual convention is mandated by the AFSCME constitution, with members across the country coming together to vote on new bylaws, share best practices, and build relationships.
Alvin Auwae, Jr., Robert Baltazar, Jonah Bates, Rambeau Gahan, Patricia Hoopii, Abbie Kaliko, Lorena Kashiwamura, Mailelynn Licos, Raymond Maae, Rylie Richmond, Teresita Tagudin, James Wataru, Kimo Werner, and Justin Yamada were chosen to represent UPW and ensure that the voices of all members are heard. While this year’s convention will be drastically scaled back due to COVID-19 and the shift to an online platform, we know our delegates are up to the task.
Thank you to these members for their willingness to lead. You can learn more about them below, and we know that they’ll make us proud.
Alvin G Auwae Jr., BU1
I’m a member of bargaining Unit 1, and I work for the Department of Public Works, Highways Division at the Lahaina District as a Street Sweeper Operator. I’ve been a UPW member for 32 years, with 28 years as a Chief Steward. I attended a study tour at AFSCME headquarters in Washington DC, and I’ve also attended five AFSCME conventions. I’m honored to serve again as a delegate to the 2020 AFSCME Virtual Convention. As a delegate, I will continue to take my responsibility seriously by studying the issues, as I will be playing a critical role in our union democracy.
Robert Baltazar, BU1
I’m a member of Unit 1 and I work as a Wastewater plant operator at Honouliuli WWTP. This will be my first time being a part of union business and I am excited to have the opportunity to be one of fourteen to represent our membership during the AFSCME 2020 Virtual Convention. I will do my best to gather all important information that is discussed during these sessions, and I look forward to representing our membership with pride and integrity.
Jonah Bates, BU1
I work for environmental services csm. I’ve been a union member for 9 years, including serving as a Shop Steward. I’m trying to be more active with UPW so I can help strengthen and bring back solidarity to our union.
Rambeau Gahan, BU1
I am a Unit 1 Member and I work for the Department of Environmental Services, Treatment & Disposal as an Operator at Honouliuli Wastewater Treatment Plant. I am a newly active member with UPW, and this will be my first AFSCME Convention. It is a privilege to serve as a delegate to the 2020 AFSCME Virtual Convention. I understand and accept the vital role to participate and maintain our core foundation. My concern for my fellow workers and their concerted activities goes back to when I was an organizer in the early 90’s. I hope we as a Union can assist and create a livable and sustainable Union.
Patricia Hoopii, BU1
I’m a member of Unit 1 and I work at the Department of Education as a custodian. I have been a UPW member for 14 years. I have attended three other AFSCME conventions, which all declared “Never Give Up or QUIT! Rise Up!” It’s essential that we continue to learn and gain new skills, and I thank you for the giving me this opportunity to grow as a union member.
Abbie Kaliko, BU1
“I’m a member of Unit 1 and employed by the City and County of Honolulu. I work in the Department of (Maintenance) Parks and Recreation, Division 1 Section 2, Located at Ewa Mahiko, as a Power Mower Operator Truck-Driver. I’m also a member of UPW and honored to be a Shop Steward. This will be my first time attending the AFSCME Convention, and it is a privilege to serve. As a delegate for the 2020 Virtual Convention, it is my responsibility to listen, research, and participate in our union democracy.”
Lorena Kashiwamura, BU10
I’m a Unit 10 member and I work for the Department of Health – Maui WIC Program on Maui as a Nutrition Assistant/ Breastfeeding Coordinator/ Certified Lactation Counselor. I have served as the Maui Division Secretary since 2011, and most recently was appointed as the State Secretary Treasurer. I am also currently the Chief Steward for the Unit 10 at large Maui Division, and I’ve been a member of the Public Sector since 2000. Prior to that, I was part of the private sector, with my employment at Hale Makua since 1997. I have attended 4 AFSCME conventions, and I am honored to serve as a delegate to the 2020 AFSCME Virtual Convention because the convention is the highest governing body of our union. As a delegate, I will be playing a crucial role as part of our union’s democratic process. I have always taken my responsibility seriously and will be studying the issues that are upon us not just as workers, but as frontline workers.
Mailelynn Licos, Private Sector
“I’m a private sector member and I’ve been working for Hale Makua since 1998. I am a Steward and I also served on the State Executive Board as a Private Sector Division secretary. I have attended two AFSCME conventions, and to be a delegate for the third time is such an honor. The 2020 AFSCME virtual convention means a lot to me, and especially to our members. It is the most important constitutional mandate of the union. I will do my best to take my responsibilities seriously by studying the issues, as I will be playing a critical role in our union’s democracy. I will make sure to share whatever I learn from this year’s 2020 convention to our members as I always do.”
Raymond Ma’ae, BU10
I’m a member of Unit 10 and I work for the Public Safety Department as an Adult Corrections Officer V. I have been a UPW member for the past 32 years, and I am honored to serve as a first time delegate to the 2020 AFSCME Virtual Convention. I hope to learn as much as possible about the inner workings of the convention, working together alongside my fellow delegates so that we can be the best advocates for UPW, and gain more skills & knowledge to help strengthen our union. As a delegate, I will take my responsibilities seriously by studying the issues to help make important decisions about the direction we take in the coming years.
Rylie Richmond, BU1
I’m a member of Bargaining Unit 1, and I work for the Department of Transportation – Highways in Special Services and Maintenance. I’ve been a UPW member for just over a year, and I was previously a member of Local 675 in California. I’m proud to serve as a delegate to the AFSCME 2020 Virtual Convention, and I would like to learn as much as possible .
Teresita C. Tagudin, BU1
“I’m a Unit 1 member and I work at Kauai Community College as a janitor. I’m a member of the State Executive Board, a Chief Steward, and I’ve been a UPW member for almost 24 years. I have attended three AFSCME Conventions, and I am honored to serve again as a delegate to the 2020 AFSCME Virtual Convention. Because of the convention, I will be able to learn new skills & knowledge that I can use to strengthen our union. As a delegate, I will continue to advocate for my co-workers & members, demonstrating how our union solidarity helps us to win better wages and benefits, and maintain our voices on the job. and help make important decisions on the direction we take in the coming years.
James Wataru, BU1
I have been a member of UPW for 21 and half years, and this will be my 8th AFSCME convention. I always look forward to attending so that I can meet up with other labor leaders from around the country to discuss and compare issues that we are facing. While this will be a different experience for me as the convention goes virtual, I look forward to seeing what is in store for us as a movement as we all get used to this new normal. No matter the circumstances, I know that AFSCME will do their best to make this convention as informational and educational as possible. NEED BARAGAINING UNIT
Kimo Werner, BU10
No bio provided
Justin Yamada, BU1
As a cook in BU-1 at the Oahu Community Correctional Center Food Service Unit, I’ve been with UPW for the past 5 years as a Chief Steward and more recently as Secretary for the Oahu Division. It has always been my goal to get the members active and informed. As a delegate to the AFSCME convention, I will be able to collaborate with other states on how to address challenges that affect all union members and how to best implement realistic solutions and remedies here at home. Because building an impenetrable force for our 13,000+ UPW Ohana is imperative.