Long-time activist from Kingston takes over as Leah Casselman steps down after 12 years
Toronto (20 April 2007) - The Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU/NUPGE) has elected Warren 'Smokey' Thomas as its sixth president.
Thomas, 54, was chosen Friday by delegates at the union's provincial convention in Toronto. He replaces Leah Casselman who has stepped down after serving an unprecedented 12 years as head of Ontario's largest public sector union.
"I look forward to working together with all the members and staff of OPSEU as we move this growing union into the future," said Thomas, a long-time activist, member of the OPSEU Executive Board and registered practical nurse from Kingston.
Thomas defeated union activists Nancy Pridham, 42, a registered practical nurse from Toronto, and David Rapaport, 59, an information technology professional from Toronto.
OPSEU represents about 120,000 employees of the Ontario government, Ontario's community colleges and more than 500 broader public sector employees such as those who work in hospitals, the LCBO, ambulance services, school boards, municipalities, social service agencies and privately-operated corporations. NUPGE