Local 251 Reconnects at Productive New Employee Orientation in Alaska
April 12, 2023
Last week, leadership from the National Federation of Federal Employees (NFFE) spent several days in Juneau, Alaska to attend a new employee orientation for the United States Forest Service. The orientation was for new workers who will be stationed on the public lands and parks in Alaska, all of which are represented by NFFE Local 251.
“This was my first time in Alaska, and it was absolutely awesome,” said NFFE National President Randy Erwin via Facebook. “This place is truly majestic. We also had a really great week meeting with new Forest Service workers, many of whom signed up to be dues-paying members of the union this week,” Erwin also expressed that he felt there was “tremendous talent” within the group.
NFFE Local 251 President Nancy Soriano said that this event was a breakthrough because so many federal employees hadn’t met face-to-face since the Covid pandemic. She noted that the event was engaging and that personal interactions like those that occurred last week are so vital to a thriving union.
Soriano highlighted how there was a break during one of the orientation sessions where members were served lunch and she noted that watching everyone interact, speaking passionately about what they were learning, and having the opportunity to connect in real time was an important steppingstone for Local 251 after only have virtual events during the pandemic.
“There is no question of the importance of human to human contact,” Soriano said. “For Randy, Rob and I, to get to look them directly in the eyes and answer the incredible questions that they asked us, there is just no replacing that.”
Soriano spoke about how having President Erwin at the orientation made it that much more impactful.
“Not everybody gets to have the national president, and a great recruiter, attend new employee orientation,” Soriano said.
“I want to thank NFFE Local 251 President Nancy Soriano for her tremendous efforts this week,” continued Erwin “Her reputation among those in her bargaining unit is among the very best I have ever seen, a tribute to her incredible talent and dedication to those she represents. I also want to thank NFFE National Business Representative/Organizer Rob Arnold, who ran a truly first-class organizing drive this week. I look forward to all of the accomplishments that Local 251 has in store for the future.”