Council 65 Virtual Convention Recap

This years convention was like no other.  Sadly, we were unable to meet together in person this year. Still, we were able to create a full convention experience remotely. Passing 4 resolutions, 5 amendments to the constitution and electing our 2021 Executive Board. Attendees also had the opportunity to attend four workshops to help develop their locals.  Click here to see all your 2020 Member Award Winners. 

Guest Speakers

MN AFL CIO Pres. Bill McCarthy

Minnesota AFL-CIO President Bill McCarthy

Delegates heard messages from a number of guest speakers. Minnesota AFL-CIO President Bill McCarthy spoke about the challenges facing the Labor Movement in Minnesota, two members of his staff provided a brief training on social media activism and workplace organizing. 

AFSCME International President Lee Saunders' Address to Delegates.

AFSCME President Lee Saunders Addresses Council 65 2020 Convention

AFSCME President Lee Saunders Addresses Council 65 2020 Convention

Governor Tim Walz Addresses Council 65 Delegates

Newly Appointed Executive Director Shannon Douvier gave her first speech to the Council membership highlighting the needs to come together in these divided times, to listen to each other, and most importantly feel empathy for the pain and hardships of others.



Delegates voted on four resolutions committing our council to supporting our values and being a strong partner in the larger labor movement. The Resolutions passed are listed below: 

  1. Supporting Universal Healthcare in Minnesota, South Dakota, North Dakota and Nationwide
  2. All Workers are Created Equal, prohibiting harassments, discrimination and retaliation. 
  3. Pursuing Full South Dakota & North Dakota AFL-CIO affiliation.
  4. Commitment to Getting out the Vote in 2020

Council 65 Constitutional Amendments

Delegates passed five Amendments to the AFSCME Council 65 Convention. Two of the amendments were clerical fixes to the constitution. Another amendment was to adjust the council districts to correctly balance the size of each district.  Amendment III increases the maximum dues deduction annually by an inflation index. This is to better match with the annual deduction changes of AFSCME International to ensure that Council 65 continues to have the resources to provide the best possible representation to members and their locals. The fifth and final amendment updates and clarifies certain meeting stipends available to Executive Board Members.

Executive Board Elections

We had a large number of Officer Elections at this years convention. Most were elected by unanimous consent, however there were five nominations for our four At Large Board Member positions. One at large seat is reserved for a member of MLPNA, and another for a member from South Dakota.  Therefore Deb Tauer-Local 105 and Tanner Corbin-Local 519 were also elected by unanimous consent.  A mail ballot election will occur for the remaining two At Large seats. 

The candidates in order of nomination are:

  • Jeremy Hanson-Local 639
  • Eric Anderson-Local 737
  • Dawn Cullifer-Local 1851

Ballots were mailed to eligible delegates on Friday.  Delegates should vote for 2 at large board members.  Ballots must be returned to the St. Cloud office no later than Monday Oct. 26, 2020.  Results will be reported on a Zoom Meeting held on October 28th 2020. This meeting is open to all delegates. 

Board Members Elected by Unanimous Consent:

  • Council President: Mark Reger-Local 94
  • Secretary: Jennifer Simota-Local 2685
  • Secretary/Treasurer: Kristine Hamm-Local 2685
  • District 1 Member: Michelle Johnson-Local 580
  • District 2 Member: Amanda Due-Local 748
  • District 3 member: Kevin O'Laughlin-Local 3457
  • District 4 Member: Todd Larson-Local 559
  • At Large Member 1: Deb Tauer-Local 105
  • At Large Member 2: Tanner Corbin-Local 519

What's happening in 2021

We hope that next year we are able to gather together again. We are currently Planning to hold our 58th Annual AFSCME Council 65 Convention in Duluth on September 24-25th 2021.  We will update local leaders regularly with any changes to this plan. 

Our 2021 Council 65 Day on the Hill is tentatively scheduled for March 9th, 2021.  We hope to be able to hold this event in person but are planning for another virtual event. This years lobby day will be one of the most important we have ever had.  Due to the struggling economy and COVID-19 Pandemic, the state budget will be tight and we need to make sure local government, schools, and hospital funding is kept in tact. The only way we can do that is if you join us to talk to your elected leaders about the importance of the work you do.  

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