Winpisinger Center Spanish Leadership Working Group Expands

Members of the latest Spanish Leadership Working Group Front Row: From left, Paula Cardenas, Adriana Picasso, Geny Ulloa, Anne Wiberg. Second Row: From left, Javier Almazan, Macario Camorlinga, Abby Lau, Calixto Tapia, Danny Arreola. Back Row: From left, Jorge Bonilla, Angel Perez, Cesar Alvarado, Jose Perez, Joel Ochoa, Armando Arreola

The Spanish Leadership Working Group met for a groundbreaking session the first week in July at the William W. Winpisinger CenterSeven new members from across the IAM joined the existing members of the Working Group for an intense week of curriculum review and revision, training and planning.  This expansion reflects the increased workload created by the growing number of Spanish language programs offered at the Winpisinger Center, as well as the demographic changes within the American workforce.

“I am incredibly proud of the Spanish Leadership Working Group and am pleased to see that these new members and activists have stepped up and taken on this important work” noted International President Tom Buffenbarger.  “This work – educating and developing the next generation of IAM members, leaders, and activists – is critical to our future as an organization.”

The Working Group is also now much more diverse; its members come from 10 different Latin American countries: Mexico, Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Nicaragua, Guatemala, El Salvador, Uruguay and Argentina.

“It has been an honor to be able to participate in the Spanish Leadership Working Group, being part of a diverse and dedicated group,” said Adriana Picasso, from Local 1759 in Herndon, VA. “But the most important thing is to recognize our responsibility to expand and grow the working group in order to educate the growing number of members who speak Spanish.”

Like the English Leadership programs, the Spanish Leadership programs build a solid understanding of trade unionism and provide participants with the skills and tools they need to effectively represent and grow the membership. They are designed for IAM officers, activists and members who speak Spanish as their primary language. While all classroom instruction, books and materials are in Spanish, the content is identical to the material used in the English leadership programs.

“It was a great experience.  It is my first Working Group meeting as an educator and not as a student.  I liked the diversity of the group,” said José Pérez, from Local 2725 in San Juan, Puerto Rico. “The cultures have increased to ten different nations in the group.  This is incredible.  And I think that this is also the beginning of a rebirth for the Spanish classes.  In this moment we are writing the future.”

Four Spanish Leadership Programs are available between now and the end of the year:

Spanish Leadership I:  Aug 23rd – 28th and Oct 11th – 16th

Spanish Leadership II:  Sept 13th – 18th

Spanish Advanced Leadership:  Sept 27th – Oct 2nd

Please note that enrollments in any of the Spanish Leadership Programs do not count against a Lodge’s regular leadership school allotments.  Click here to download enrollment forms in either Spanish or English directly from the Winpisinger Center’s website.

If you have any questions about the Spanish Leadership Programs or need any additional information about the Programs or how to enroll, please contact Ruth Lowery at (301) 373-3300 or email rlowery@iamaw.org.