LOS ANGELES and NEW YORK  (Feb. 9, 2014) – The National Board of Directors of SAG-AFTRA met in a scheduled one-day video plenary this weekend at both the James Cagney Board Room in Los Angeles and the New York Board Room in the recently opened New York office.

President Ken Howard opened the meeting in memory of the members who have passed away since the last national board meeting in September, including a special dedication to former Washington-Mid Atlantic President Kirk Penberthy who died a week ago.

“He was an extraordinary unionist and a great friend who will be deeply missed,” Howard told the board.

Howard also updated members on the Wages and Working Conditions (W&W) meetings that have been taking place across the country in preparation for the upcoming Theatrical/Television-Exhibit A contracts negotiations. He recently attended W&W meetings in New York, Chicago and Los Angeles, and will continue visiting other locals across the country during the process.

“Attending these W&W’s is a great personal experience,” Howard said. “Members are actively engaged and interested. It is everything that our national W&W process is supposed to be –– collaborative, open and member-driven.”

Howard closed out his report congratulating the members on all that SAG-AFTRA has accomplished as the union approaches its two-year anniversary since merger.

“What we have accomplished in the last two years is remarkable,” he said. “We do this work because of our solemn obligation to serve the members. And for me as your president, that means every single member in every community across the country.”

National Executive Director’s Report

National Executive Director David White updated the board on operational matters including the implementation of a new executive staff structure under which Chief Administrative Officer Duncan Crabtree-Ireland becomes Chief Operating Officer; Assistant National Executive Director (ANED), News & Broadcast Mary Cavallaro becomes Chief Broadcast Officer; ANED, Communications Pamela Greenwalt becomes Chief Communications & Marketing Officer; ANED, Contracts Ray Rodriguez becomes Chief Contracts Officer; Executive Director Human Resources & Administration Martha Holdridge becomes Chief Human Resources Officer; and Executive Director Information Technology Daniel Inukai becomes Chief Information Officer. All report to White.

Associate National Executive Director Mathis Dunn, Chief Economist David Viviano, Chief Financial Officer Arianna Ozzanto, Executive Producer, SAG Awards & National Programming Kathy Connell, and Senior Advisor John McGuire remain in those roles and continue to report to White.

In announcing the changes, White said, “I am pleased with the great direction that we have forged in so many of our operational areas, and these changes are intended to continue that progress. We are stable and moving in the right direction.”

White also reported on the New York office grand opening at 1900 Broadway. He screened a short video of the event that was attended by more than 300 members. White also provided an update on the recently concluded 20th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards. The show's Executive Producer Kathy Connell reported on events surrounding the show including 13 SAG-AFTRA Local’s viewing parties.The show garnered 4.6 million viewers on TNT and TBS, 2.5 million international viewers and was made available to one million members of our military on the Armed Forces Network.

Finance Report

Secretary-Treasurer Amy Aquino and Chief Financial Officer Arianna Ozzanto reported on second quarter results indicating better than expected revenue with expenses tracking closely to budget.

Ozzanto also reported on several real estate matters including a Finance Committee recommendation in favor of approving a lease renewal package for the union’s Los Angeles headquarters office at 5757 Wilshire Blvd.

Contracts Report

Chief Contracts Officer Ray Rodriguez and Assistant National Executive Director, Contracts Joan Halpern Weise provided an update on the Wages and Working Conditions process across the country for the TV/Theatrical-Exhibit A contracts.

The board voted to seat the remaining members and alternates of the negotiating committee. Chair Ken Howard and several vice chairs were previously seated. The committee has 17 members and 13 alternates.

Pension & Health and Health & Retirement Report

Board members voted to fill two trustee vacancies on the SAG-Producers Pension & Health Plans with member Mandy Fabian and SAG-AFTRA Chief Contracts Officer Ray Rodriguez.

Governance Report

Chief Operating Officer Duncan Crabtree-Ireland updated the board regarding post-convention activities, the actions of the executive committee and several governance and administrative recommendations.

Board members also congratulated NED David White who was honored with the 2014 John M. Langston Bar Association Lawyer of the Year Award last night during a ceremony at the Millennium Biltmore Hotel in downtown Los Angeles.

The meeting adjourned at 8:15 p.m. (Pacific) on Feb. 8.

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