Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the conference was held virtually over Zoom. Almost 500 delegates participated, including a record breaking number of staff and faculty from Montana Western. During the conference MFPE members elected new union leaders, voted on constitutional amendments, and approved the year’s budget. However, the biggest news of the conference was the retirement of MFPE President Eric Feaver whose career as a union leader and activist stretched over four decades.
President Feaver became president of the Montana Education Association (MEA) in 1984 and shepherded through MEA’s merger with the Montana Federation of Teachers (MFT) in 2000. Feaver was elected President of the newly formed MEA-MFT. Then, in 2018, Feaver oversaw the merger of MEA-MFT with the Montana Public Employees Association (MPEA) to form the Montana Federation of Public Employees (MFPE), Montana’s largest and most professionally diverse union with 23,000 members.
During Friday’s plenary session, MFPE members elected their statewide leadership. MFPE 2nd Vice President Amanda Curtis was elected to succeed Feaver as MFPE’s next President. 1st Vice President Bill Dwyer was re-elected, current MFPE Treasurer Rich Aarstad was elected 2nd Vice President, and Michelle Wheat was elected MFPE Treasurer.
MFPE’s new statewide officers will take office on June 15, 2020. For more information about the meeting, visit the MFPE website.