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FEATURE STORY: One of AAUP's Own Seeks Statewide Office

AAUP Member Nina Turner Running for Ohio Secretary of State

State Sen. Nina Turner
If you feel like you know Nina Turner, it could be because she's your State Senator, or because you've caught one of her many national media appearances, or because she has taught alongside of you at Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C).

Yes, in addition to representing Ohio's 25th Senate District, Sen. Turner, a Democrat, is a proud AAUP member at Tri-C, where she teaches history.

Like many with a passion to teach, Turner was inspired by one of her professors. She credits her mentor, Dr. Dorothy Salem, who taught her at both Tri-C and Cleveland State University, for encouraging her to earn a B.A. and M.A. and then pursue a teaching career.

After graduating from Cleveland State, Turner spent a year as a legislative aide in the Ohio Senate. She then returned home to Cleveland, where she worked at Tri-C as an adjunct professor while also serving in Mayor Michael R. White's administration as his Executive Assistant for Legislative Affairs.

Since she experienced life as an adjunct firsthand, Turner is acutely aware of the challenges part-time faculty face. It was no surprise, then, when she introduced Senate Bill 65, which would grant adjuncts and graduate students collective bargaining rights under Ohio law.

Currently, state law says that these part-time teachers are not "employees," and thus are exempt from the public employee collective bargaining law.

In 2001, after an unsuccessful bid for Cleveland City Council, Turner assumed a full-time teaching position at Tri-C and was placed on tenure track after a year. 

Prof. Turner speaking with students

It wouldn't be long before she would find her way back into public service while continuing to teach, first serving as Director of Government Affairs for the Cleveland Metropolitan School District, then being the first woman ever elected to represent Cleveland's Ward 1 on City Council.

In 2008, Turner was appointed to fill the 25th Senate seat vacated by Lance Mason and served the remainder of his term. In 2010, she ran unopposed and was elected to her first full four-year term.

During her nearly six-year tenure as a State Senator, Turner has earned a reputation for being a reasonable yet outspoken voice on many issues, but most notably on voting rights. Consequently, it was a natural fit for Turner to set her sights on becoming Ohio's next Secretary of State.

Turner says that she is running for Secretary of State because she believes Ohioans should have simple, convenient, and secure elections. She firmly believes that in addition to education, the ballot box is the other great equalizer in a democracy, and she has chastised Republican lawmakers for passing legislation that has restricted voting access.

In addition to being the chief election officer, the Secretary of State also provides business services. Turner believes that she can help transform the office from one that merely files paperwork into a resource center that helps empower business owners to be more successful.

For more information about Sen. Turner's campaign, visit: http://www.ninaturner.org/.

Turner will face incumbent Secretary of State Jon Husted (R) on the ballot this November.

  Make a "Free" Contribution to
Your Favorite State Candidate
  
Did you know that in Ohio you can receive a dollar for dollar tax credit up to $100 for a contribution made to a state candidate?

Pursuant to Ohio Revised Code 5747.29, a taxpayer filing as an individual can claim a tax credit of up to $50 for contributions made to state candidates, while taxpayers filing jointly can claim a credit up to $100.

It's like giving away free money!

A state candidate is any candidate who is running for a statewide office (e.g. Governor, Secretary of State, Attorney General, Treasurer, Auditor), as well as anyone running for the Ohio General Assembly.

Over the past four years, we have seen an unprecedented attack on collective bargaining rights and voting rights, more reductions in higher education spending, and specific attacks on faculty working conditions. We cannot afford to sit out this election.

So in addition to making sure you're registered to vote at your current address, please consider making contributions to candidates you support and know will support you in your profession and everyday life.

  Save the Date for the
2015 OCAAUP Annual Meeting
  
The next Ohio Conference AAUP Annual Meeting will be held Friday, November 6 - Saturday, November 7, 2015 at the Renaissance Columbus Downtown. 

For many years, the Annual Meeting had been held on the second weekend of April, but due to conflicts with other professional meetings regularly scheduled around that time, as well as some internal considerations--such as the advantages of approving our annual budget before one-third of the year has already passed--the Conference Board of Trustees has decided to move the Annual Meeting to November.

Because we just held our Annual Meeting for 2014 in April and because it was impractical to try to schedule a meeting so close to November 2014, there will be an 18-month interval between the meetings.

We will send reminders on the change in dates in the late spring and early fall of 2015.