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Gabrielle Carteris announced Sunday night that she will run for SAG-AFTRA executive vice president at its convention later this month. The office is the union’s second highest.
A statement released on behalf of Carteris said that the veteran of Beverly Hills, 90210 has worked virtually every SAG?AFTRA contract during her 26 years as a union member, including voiceover, commercials, games, and a stint as host of her own talk show.
“Serving on five negotiating committees with members from across the country drove home the importance of unity in confronting the changing landscape of our industry,” said Carteris. “The merger was the first step toward that unity, and as national executive vice president of SAG-AFTRA I will work with president Ken Howard, my fellow union leaders and members to help SAG-AFTRA find its strong common voice.”
Howard has not issued an endorsement.
Former SAG-AFTRA co-president Roberta Reardon said, “For years, Gabrielle has fiercely advocated for SAG?AFTRA members all around the country, and across every category of work: for commercial actors in New York, music video dancers in Los Angeles, and broadcasters in Peoria. As we approach the 2014 negotiations, we need Gabrielle’s steady hand and steely determination to help guide our union.”
Reardon had previously said she was herself going to run for evp.
First elected to office in 2005, Carteris served simultaneously on the national boards of both SAG and AFTRA, and as president of AFTRA’s Los Angeles local. That dual lineage may make her a candidate acceptable to both legacy SAG and legacy AFTRA activists.
Carteris was appointed to the Group for One Union, the body that hammered out the SAG/AFTRA merger agreement and union constitution. Following its overwhelming ratification, Carteris was chosen as first national vice president of SAG-AFTRA’s L.A. Local.
Carteris took part in the commercials negotiation that was concluded this year, was instrumental in helping organize the first-ever music video contract and was a featured speaker during the 2011 labor protests in Wisconsin. Carteris was elected as a vice president of the AFL-CIO California Labor Federation and serves on its executive council; she’s also a local delegate to the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor.
“Gabrielle’s combination of intelligence, commitment, humor, and deep and true compassion for everyone around her made her indispensable in the creation of the merger, and in all the negotiations and organizing efforts she was a part of,” said SAG-AFTRA secretary-treasurer Amy Aquino. “Gabrielle Carteris truly understands that we are only as strong as we are united, and that makes her exactly the kind of leader that SAG?AFTRA needs right now.”
Carteris’ press release also included statements of support from David Hartley-Margolin of Denver, Colo., national vp for SAG-AFTRA’s Small Locals; Jim Kerr, a New York radio personality and vice president of the union’s New York Local; actor Jason George (Grey’s Anatomy), SAG-AFTRA national board member and co-chair of the union’s national diversity committee; and national board member and Emmy Award winner Adam Arkin.
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