Zinnia is Deputy Chief of Staff at the Michigan AFL-CIO. Zinnia is a seasoned political professional having worked for the Hon. John D. Dingell for 14 years. She has significant experience in fundraising, communications, event planning and grassroots. Zinnia started working for Congressman Dingell while she was still completing her undergraduate degree at the University of Michigan, and served as the Administrator of Mr. Dingell’s year round political operations until his retirement.
Zinnia is a proud first generation Chaldean American and lifelong Michigander. She holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan, and a master’s degree from Central Michigan University. Zinnia is a member of UAW Local 1981. She enjoys traveling and the Detroit Tigers.
Conner Wood is the Campaigns Director for the Michigan AFL-CIO. A campaign operative by trade, Conner most recently served as the Field Coordinator for the Huron Valley ALF and Monroe-Lenawee CLC. A fifth-generation Michigander, Conner was born and raised in Isabella County. He is a graduate of the University of Michigan and the Electoral College.
In addition to his work in the labor movement, Conner currently serves as Board Secretary for the United Way of Jackson County and as Chair of the 7th Congressional District Democratic Party. He is a proud member of the Detroit News Guild, CWA 34022. He and his wife Kelsey (herself an active CWA member) live in Jackson.
Payton is our Digital Director at Michigan AFL-CIO. Vastly self-taught, he has been working in the e-commerce realm for ten years. Born and raised in Jackson, Michigan, he went to Jackson College to get his Associates and Certificate in Graphic Design.
While going to college, Payton worked on the Alaskan Railroad as the Lead Chef of the Wilderness Express for two years. He enjoys hiking, learning new skills, and anything that involves tech.
Joshua Pugh is the Communications Director for the Michigan AFL-CIO. Josh has been a progressive communicator and organizer since 2008, working for Obama for America, the Michigan Democratic Party, Progress Michigan, For Our Future, as a general consultant, and in various capacities on candidate campaigns at the local, state, and federal level.
Josh was born in Lansing but grew up in rural Emmet County, in the shadow of the Mackinac Bridge. When he’s not thinking about politics and campaigns, Josh is an avid fan of sports and music, and lives in Lansing’s Old Town neighborhood with his wife Breina and their two cats. Josh is a member of UAW Local 1981.
Micheal is Organizing Director at the Michigan AFL-CIO. Born and raised in Lansing, Micheal’s work in the labor movement, progressive issues and education reform has kept him active across the state.
After graduating from the University of Michigan, he served 2 years as an AmeriCorps VISTA working to address students’ achievement issues in Ann Arbor Public high schools. Since then, Micheal has been very active in nonpartisan campaigns, organizing students on college campuses nationwide, local community building and sustainability drives, and a host of other exciting work! Micheal is excited to contribute to a dedicated team and help engage activists and workers in support of Michigan’s working families. Micheal is a member of UAW Local 1981.
Ryan is Director of Legislative Affairs at the Michigan AFL-CIO. Ryan has more than a decade of legislative experience working for both the Michigan State House and Senate, including as Senior Communications Advisor for the Senate Democratic Caucus under the leadership of Gretchen Whitmer. Ryan has also worked on state and local level campaigns and currently serves as an Ingham County Commissioner.
A lifelong Michigan resident, Ryan was born in Lansing and is a graduate of Albion College. He lives in Lansing’s Westside Neighborhood with his husband, Cody. He has worked on the board of local non-profit organizations focused on LGBTQ rights including Michigan Pride and Suits in the City. Ryan is a member of UAW Local 1981.
Daryl Newman is a skilled political organizer and grassroots activist and the youngest person ever elected to the Office of Secretary-Treasurer of the Michigan State AFL-CIO.
Immediately prior, he served as Member Mobilizer for the American Federation of Teachers, Michigan. At a time when classroom teachers and all educational employees are under attack from forces that would gut our public educational system, Daryl worked to make sure their voices were heard in Lansing.
The son of a union postal worker and a teacher in the Detroit Public Schools, Daryl learned the value of trade unionism early on.
Upon his graduation from Michigan State University, Daryl found a talent for political organizing. He went to work for candidates and campaigns that shared his values, and rose quickly to positions of responsibility. As state political director of the Michigan Democratic Party, Daryl mobilized for key victories even in highly competitive races. Since 2000, he has been involved in every coordinated presidential campaign and has helped ensure that Michigan voters elected a labor-endorsed candidate. His career at the Michigan Democratic Party is notable as he was the youngest political director of a state Democratic Party organization in the country during his tenure. Daryl is a member of AFT Michigan.
Ron Bieber is President of the Michigan AFL-CIO. Ron has dedicated his entire career to fighting for working families. Ron is a third-generation UAW member, and the son of former UAW President Owen Bieber. Prior to his election as President of the Michigan AFL-CIO, he served as Director of the UAW’s Community Action Program, and before that, as Assistant Director of the UAW’s General Motors Department.
Bieber joined UAW Local 730 at age 18, after hiring into General Motors Metal Fabricating plant in Wyoming, Michigan. He currently lives in Grand Blanc with his wife, Patti. Ron is a member of UAW Local 659.
Derek is Chief of Staff at the Michigan AFL-CIO. In addition to his work at the Michigan AFL-CIO, Derek currently serves as Mayor of the City of Jackson. He was first elected to the City Council in 2011.
Prior to joining the Michigan AFL-CIO, Derek was District Administrator to Congressman John Dingell, the longest-serving Member of Congress in American history. Derek is an Eagle Scout, and a Partner with the Truman National Security Project. He is a graduate of Michigan State University.
Stephanie Glidden is an experienced, resourceful, and effective political and legislative staffer who has worked for multiple political candidates throughout Michigan and spent time in both the House and Senate.
Most recently she was a senior staffer and regional field director for Gretchen Driskell for Congress. She is a graduate from Central Michigan University – Fire Up! – and the daughter of a union carpenter. Stephanie is also a proud member of UAW Local 1981.
Patty is Secretary to the Health and Safety Director. Patty was hired into the Michigan AFL-CIO in 1969 by then President August (Gus) Scholle.
She has held the following positions: Jr. Bookkeeper, Legislative Secretary, Staff Secretary, Secretary to Secretary-Treasurer Walter Oliver and Secretary to Presidents William C. Marshall, Frank D. Garrison and Mark Gaffney.
She is currently the Recording Secretary for Union Label and Service Trades Department and the Secretary to Health and Safety Director Derrick Quinney.
Stephanie is Controller at the Michigan AFL-CIO. Stephanie was raised to be union. It was her mother, Judy Pike, a longtime OPEIU member and employee of the Michigan State AFL-CIO, that instilled her with union values like social justice, collective bargaining, and solidarity. Employed with the Michigan State AFL-CIO since 2008 as the Executive Secretary to the Secretary-Treasurer, Stephanie is proud to be carrying on the union tradition as a member of OPEIU Local 459.
Meg is the Executive Secretary, and has worked at the MI AFL-CIO for over 5 years.
She is a proud member of OPEIU Local 459 for over 9 years, working at both the MI AFL-CIO and Lansing Auto Makers Credit Union. Meg has two wonderful children, and plans to continue her career with the MI AFL-CIO, and help people understand that so-called Right to Work is wrong for working families.