LOS ANGELES (Oct. 9, 2017) — The third SAG-AFTRA National Convention concluded Sunday with members voting on final resolutions and speeches from the union’s top officers, focusing on the convention’s theme: Our Union, Our Strength, Our Future. The day capped a three-day event that brought together member delegates from across the country to vote on resolutions that advance the union and its mission.
In closing remarks, SAG-AFTRA President Gabrielle Carteris thanked delegates for their service to members and congratulated the newly elected leadership. She also thanked the staff. President Carteris also debuted the inaugural President’s Award to the late New York President Mike Hodge. SAG-AFTRA Executive Vice President Rebecca Damon accepted the award on his behalf.
Carteris highlighted the work the union has achieved over the last two years as well as the accomplishments made during the national convention. “This has been an amazing three days. The work that you have done is setting the course for the next two years of SAG-AFTRA and beyond. It is clear that you are the right leaders to be in the room and you should be proud,” Carteris said. She also asked delegates to think about mentorship. “We inspire each other to aspire to more,” she said. “We must pay it forward.”
Executive Vice President Rebecca Damon encouraged delegates to prioritize and unify saying, “We are a huge union with a broad constituency and we need to focus our energies in areas where we will get the biggest return.” She also encouraged delegates to be trailblazers and mentors to the next generation of performers. “Part of being a good mentor is getting the next person to be involved,” she said. “Step out of the position of control and bring someone along. Let them understand that they have agency.”
Secretary-Treasurer Jane Austin reflected on the changes the union has undergone for the last two years and provided an update on the union’s finances. “It continues to be an honor to serve this union as one of its national officers,” said Austin, adding that along with Carteris and Damon, “It is my belief that together we are a trifecta of union, strength and future.”
Delegates were treated to a closing video that featured highlights from the three-day convention.
The next biennial SAG-AFTRA convention will take place in 2019.
SAG-AFTRA represents approximately 160,000 actors, announcers, broadcast journalists, dancers, DJs, news writers, news editors, program hosts, puppeteers, recording artists, singers, stunt performers, voiceover artists and other entertainment and media professionals. SAG-AFTRA members are the faces and voices that entertain and inform America and the world. A proud affiliate of the AFL-CIO, SAG-AFTRA has national offices in Los Angeles and New York and local offices nationwide representing members working together to secure the strongest protections for entertainment and media artists into the 21st century and beyond. Visit SAG-AFTRA online at SAGAFTRA.org.