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Voting ends Tuesday for OPSA Steering Committee candidates

If you’ve planned to vote in the OPSA Steering Committee elections, it’s your last chance: Voting ends Tuesday, June 21 (today), at 5 p.m. (PT). Vote online here.

As a reminder, the OP Staff Assembly (OPSA) is dedicated to promoting the interest and welfare of all career employees. The OPSA Steering Committee is a group of six to 11 staff members who organize events and forums where all staff can discuss issues of mutual concern and offer opinions and recommendations on policies, processes and programs.

2022-2024 OP Staff Assembly Steering Committee candidates

Each of the candidates shared why they’d like to be a member of the OPSA Steering Committee. (Note that asterisks indicate current members.)

Dana Adams, Benefits Associate, UCPath Center
I believe that I have many strengths that will be utilized in being a member of the OP Staff Assembly Steering Committee. There’s so much that goes on at the UCPath Center, and having a seat at the table will provide a voice along with representation.

Shirley Bittlingmeier, Executive Director, IT Client Services, UCOP Oakland
I would like to use the experience I have gained from my membership and active participation in the Presidents Advisory Committee on the Status of Women (PACSW) and the Asian Pacific Islander Staff Association (APISA) committees to OPSA which serves the entire OP community. OPSA and the Employee Resource Groups are so essential right now to support and advocate for staff as we continue our future of work transition. I also gain from this work personally, as I have the opportunity to work with people who I may not ever interact with. I learn so much from the members!

Trish Dolan, UCOP Oakland — current chair*
As the chair of the OPSA Steering Committee, it has been an honor to serve the UCOP community and to collaborate with staff from the four locations – UCPath Center, UCDC, UC Sacramento and Oakland. In my role, I would like to continue to build on the work of the past year of creating a collaborative community for staff to engage, voice concerns and celebrate the diversity that makes UCOP the incredible community it is! As an alumna of UC Berkeley and a 32-year UC employee (six years at UC Berkeley and 26 at UCOP), I believe that I can offer a mature and fresh perspective on ways to drive deeper staff engagement, have fun and improve the employee experience. I love helping people! To have a chance to impact lives during these challenging times seems like my calling. I consider myself an optimist and seek to find a positive side to every situation. To continue to lead and work with the committed OPSA team will continue to be an extraordinary opportunity. We are living in unprecedented times, but we can learn so much from this and come out stronger, happier and hopefully more fulfilled and caring people. I hope to be able to share that goodness and spirit with you!

Nicola Gruen, Development Analyst, UCOP Oakland*
I would like to continue to be connected and contribute to the UCOP community through my service of making a difference for UCOP staff.

Teresa Jackson, Executive Assistant, UCOP Oakland*
It’s been a great joy and learning opportunity to collaborate with my peers in OPSA. I’d like to serve another term so that I can continue to be a voice that represents real inclusion, equity and diversity on behalf of OP’s entire workforce — promoting creative solutions to help build community and address the challenges that collectively impact UC employees.

Gail Meloan, Production Liaison, UCPath Center
It would be a tremendous opportunity to be able to represent our staff, discuss and collaborate on questions and concerns and provide support and guidance on issues that affect our employees and workplace environment.  UC is an amazing organization with hard-working and dedicated employees.  I want to help to continue to build and improve on what UC has worked so hard to achieve.

Danielle Salas, Benefits Supervisor, UCPath Center
I’d appreciate the opportunity to support and protect the interests of the UCPath Center and all UCOP staff.

Mahjabeen Yucekul,  Senior Software Developer, California Digital Library (CDL), Oakland
I would like to be a member of the OPSA Steering Committee to represent my colleagues at the CDL. The CDL is special; it’s a diverse and collaborative group of librarians, software developers and thought leaders who are passionate about advancing, preserving, managing and sharing scholarly contributions. I would also like to increase awareness and participation in OPSA events by CDL staff members.

I am very interested in continuing my professional growth by networking and gaining a better understanding of various roles, functions and dynamics at UCOP. I have seen the benefit of this from my current activities in other UCOP staff groups, including my membership in PACSW, participation in the subcommittee that organized this year’s Making Power Moves training and helping to create a fun video for UCOP’s Multicultural Week. I value the interpersonal and leadership skills development that comes with these activities. I look forward to having an opportunity to collaborate with OPSA members to organize events for colleagues and contribute to OPSA’s success.

Tony Yang, Project Policy Analyst, UC Health*
As a previous chair of the OPSA Steering Committee, I have advocated on behalf of staff and sought to empower the staff voice at UCOP. I want to continue to make sure that OPSA gives voice to employee anxieties and fears, big and small. I have helped to steer staff input in hiring our ombudsperson and making the Ombuds Office a critical resource. I have planned many staff events, including OPSA’s successful mixology event, and APISA’s PechaKucha and boba tea. I have had the honor of representing UCOP on the Council of UC Staff Assemblies, which regularly meets and relates concerns to President Drake.

I’ve held positions at UCOP, UC Berkeley and UC Riverside, and I believe that this diversity of experience is useful in identifying resources and programs to engage and empower our colleagues. I want to connect with all staff in these difficult times, with meaningful programming and outreach to hold our community together — in person and in the virtual/remote world. I believe OPSA  can do this through thoughtful decision-making and collaboration, and I respectfully ask my colleagues to consider my nomination.

How to vote

Online voting is easy and UCOP staff at all locations are encouraged to participate. Vote online here.

2022 Election Timeline

  • May 10: Nominations open
  • June 3: Application/nomination deadline
  • June 6: Candidate statements and profiles will be available online
  • June 6: Voting begins
  • June 7: Candidates announced in Link
  • June 8: Candidate meet and greet during OPSA meeting (all staff welcome)
  • June 21: Voting deadline
  • June 28: New Steering Committee members announced in Link
  • July 13: First OPSA Steering Committee Meeting with new members

For more information about OPSA, visit the OP Staff Assembly website.

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