New York (June 19, 2012) —Roberta Reardon, co-president of SAG-AFTRA, was honored by the NYC Central Labor Council, AFL-CIO in recognition for her work as former AFTRA national president and on the SAG-AFTRA merger campaign with the NYC Central Labor Council’s Distinguished Service Award. Her award reads: “In recognition of decades of service to the Labor Movement and her inspired leadership in merging two powerful unions into a new, unique voice for working people.”
Currently in their 12th year, the NYC Central Labor Council, AFL-CIO Awards recognize leaders for achievements in service towards the labor movement. Denis M. Hughes, past president, New York State AFL-CIO and Bhairavi Desai, executive director, New York Taxi Workers Alliance were also honored. The awards were presented today, Tuesday, June 19, at the W New York Hotel.
A New York-based actor, prior to the merger of SAG-AFTRA Reardon was serving her third term as national president of the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists. She was first elected AFTRA national president on July 21, 2007 by unanimous vote at the union’s 61st National Convention in Philadelphia. She had previously served as AFTRA New York Local president and AFTRA national second vice president beginning in 2003. Prior to 2003, she served as third vice president of the AFTRA New York Local beginning in 2001. Reardon is also vice president of the AFL-CIO and sits as national chair in contract negotiations for the Network Television Code, Exhibit A (Primetime Television), and the Television and Radio commercials codes. Additionally, she serves on the Executive Boards of the New York State Federation of the AFL-CIO and the New York CLC, is a board member of the Union Leadership Institute of the Cornell University ILR and serves on the AFTRA Foundation Board of Directors. Reardon also is a trustee of the AFTRA Health and Retirement Fund and The Actors’ Fund.
Since beginning her career working in daytime dramas, she has gone on to perform in hundreds of commercials as both an on-camera and voiceover artist. Reardon has twice been named to The Hollywood Reporter’s Annual Women in Entertainment Power 100 and was named to Elle Magazine’s Women in Hollywood Power List.
On receiving the award, Reardon stated, “I am proud of the work I did as AFTRA national president and the path our members created to merge with Screen Actors Guild. It is an honor that the historic work we have done in SAG-AFTRA has been recognized here in the greatest labor city in the country, New York. I’d like to thank the New York Central Labor Council and President Vincent Alvarez for this award of recognition, and I am so proud to be honored this evening with two other great New York labor leaders, my dear friend Denis Hughes and Bhairavi Desai.”
Nick Wyman, president of Actors' Equity, presented Reardon with the award and stated, “Actors’ Equity Association (AEA) salutes SAG-AFTRA co-president Roberta Reardon as she is being honored by the New York City Central Labor Council tonight. Co-president Reardon is an extraordinary union leader. Through her leadership and commitment to organizing, she grew, strengthened and consolidated AFTRA’s place in the industry. She tenaciously and fearlessly fought for the historic merger of our sister unions into SAG-AFTRA. Through the years, her vision, wisdom and guidance have served not only our entertainment unions, but the broader labor movement as well. No one is more deserving of this honor tonight than my trusted colleague, fellow union president and good friend, Roberta Reardon.”