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California State Celebrates 101 Years
By Marilyn Walton
NAPS Western Region Vice President
Margarete A. Grant Branch 127 President Charles Patterson welcomed everyone to the 101st California State Convention in May. Courtney Welch, vice mayor of Emeryville, greeted attendees and said NAPS was the first convention to return to Emeryville since the pandemic. The city was pleased NAPS chose it for their convention site.
Patterson welcomed Postal Service guests John Diperi, senior director of Processing Operations for the Pacific Northwest Division, and his California 2 managers: Ramon Martinez, Oakland senior plant manager; Evangeline Tiglao, San Francisco senior plant manager; Cathrina Dagdagan, San Jose plant manager; Nancy Canales-Nelson, North Bay P&DC plant manager; and Tanya Toedt-Fitzharris, acting Sacramento postmaster. Also attending was Edward Ruiz, WestPac Area executive designee.
We were pleased to learn Diperi and his staff are NAPS members. Their messages were positive, upbeat and well received by delegates. Also dropping by was Sunil Chanon, Richmond postmaster.
NAPS officers attending were President Ivan D. Butts, National Auxiliary President Laurie D. Butts, Pacific Area Vice President Chuck Lum and me. Former NAPS Secretary/Treasurer John Aceves provided training on the newly revised SWCs and workplace bullying.
Once opening remarks and updated Postal Service information were shared, Patterson handed the gavel to California State President Marilyn Jones, who convened the convention.
The California State NAPS Auxiliary, led by Yunina Graham, San Francisco, also convened its 88th convention. Among attendees were Laurie Butts and National Auxiliary Western Region Vice President Patricia Jackson-Kelley.
Marilyn Jones called for the Registration Committee’s report, which confirmed a quorum. The rules of the convention were read and approved. Names of the members of the 12 committees were read. Included this year were a Postmaster Committee and a Committee of the Future, a new committee to suggest ideas to help NAPS grow into the future. There were 38 resolutions to read, review and vote on.
Over the three-day convention, there were highly informative presentations. Customer Relations California District 5 (Los Angeles) Manager Elizabeth C. Rubio and Customer Relations Specialist Adam Carpenter conducted two interesting sessions and provided important information on many of the mailing changes under the “Delivering for America” plan.
Ivan Butts provided updated information on activities at NAPS Headquarters. He touched on NAPS’ ongoing lawsuit with the USPS, status of the S&DCs, observations from the Customer Service supervisor symposiums he attended and commented on the “Delivering for America” plan.
On Saturday morning, the final day, the First-Timers’ Committee presented a greeting coordinated by Debbie Baker. This year’s theme was “NAPS Through the Years.” Highlights included Ivan Butts, who did a great portrayal of MC Hammer, big baggy pants and all. The Auxiliary’s Toby Loera was Prince in a “Purple Rain” costume. Linda Thomas, Branch 88, was Aretha Franklin; Danilo Nitcha, Branch 77, was Michael Jackson; Victor Garcia, Branch 77, was Vanilla Ice; Chuck Lum was one of the gold-jacketed Temptations; and Laurie Butts closed out the show as Margarete A. Grant.
While all the partying was going on, Marilyn Jones was shooting $100 bills out of a gold air gun to remind everyone to donate to SPAC. It was another great Debbie Baker production.
During the business sessions, Chuck Lum challenged all branches to work on increasing NAPS membership. He recognized San Francisco Branch 88, Los Angeles Branch 39, Sierra Coastal Branch 244 and Honolulu Branch 214 for maintaining 80% or more membership.
Before the business sessions, I told delegates that my colleagues in the Northeast Region recently issued a SPAC challenge to Marilyn Jones. They raised $16,200 for SPAC at their regional seminar and challenged California to beat that amount.
I am excited to report that the California Legislative Team, led by legislative consultant Felicia Pennington, set a SPAC goal of $20,000. This target was exceeded; the final total was $20,380! A very special thanks to all the delegates and dynamic support from the Auxiliary. We donated in-kind gifts, gift cards and held silent auctions, 50-50 raffles and bake sales, as well as a North/South California SPAC challenge.
I am so proud of California NAPS members! They showed up and showed out. Now the challenge is passed on to all NAPS members nationwide. We want you to beat us!
This was an election year. The offices filled by acclamation were Marilyn Jones, president, Los Angeles; JJ Wong, vice president, North Bay; Stephnia Campbell, secretary, San Diego; Sally Simpao, treasurer, San Francisco; and Felicia Pennington, Los Angeles, legislative consultant.
Seven names were nominated for the four area vice president positions. By secret ballot, the newly elected area vice presidents were Marques Ceaser, San Diego; Debbie Baker, Stockton; Mariel Murillo, San Bernardino; and, new to the board, Clarissa Bognot, Sierra Coastal.
The convention concluded with a banquet and dance challenge that collected additional contributions to SPAC. Hats off to Margarete A. Grant Branch 127 for the warm hospitality and hard work in making sure all were welcomed and treated like family.
The 2024 California State Convention will be hosted by Sacramento District Branch 77 at the Red Hawk Casino.