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2023 UFCW International Convention

The UFCW International Convention, held every five years, will take place in Las Vegas from April 24-28, 2023.

To stand for nomination and election as a delegate or alternate to the Convention, UFCW Local 1518 members must, at the time of the nomination, be an active member of the Local Union continuously since September 2021. One must also maintain continuous active membership in the Local until the first day of Convention April 24, 2022.  A member may run either as a delegate or alternate, but not for both. The number of delegates apportioned to UFCW Local 1518 is 22. 

Elected Delegates and alternates will require a valid passport for travel to the United States. They will receive hotel and travel accommodations as well as a per diem. UFCW 1518 will not pay for lost time from the workplace. Elected Delegates and Alternates will be responsible for securing their own time off from work, which may be requested from the employer as per the collective agreement.

Nomination forms were mailed out on October 14.

Nomination or Election process questions should be directed to:

Shelly Hallman, Election Chairperson
UFCW International Convention 2023
c/o [email protected]

1: Raven Morningstar

I live in Whitehorseand I am a proud member of UFCW 1518. I work at Save On Foods 6690 and have been with the company for 5 years. I am a Shop Steward and sit as the Worker Co-chair on our Health and Safety Committee and also on the UFCW 1518 Executive Board, UFCW OUTreach Executive Board, UFCW Canada National Indigenous Sub Committee, UFCW 1518 Indigenous Committee. (chairperson) and Yukon Federation of Labour. I enjoy spending time taking courses to better my knowledge to help those I work with.

2: Katie (Kathleen) Guerin

I’m a proud 1518 member from Clinton BC. I moved to Kamloops in 2007. I have worked at Shale Save On 931 for 15 years doing multiple jobs in my store. I have been a Shop Steward for 8 years representing members in my store. In November of 2020 I joined the UFCW 1518 Executive Board and have enjoyed the opportunity to meet new people and represent the 25,000 plus members we have. I would love the chance to represent these members at the International UFCW convention in Las Vegas

3: Patrick Johnson

Patrick Johnson is the elected Secretary-Treasurer of UFCW Local 1518 and sits on the Executive Council of UFCW Canada.  He is eager to bring UFCW 1518 members’ voices to the international level as one of your elected leaders. The convention is an opportunity to highlight the work of community healthcare workers, to collaborate on retail bargaining strategy, and to strengthen the support for industrial workers across North America. Patrick asks for your support in building power for and bringing attention to the work of UFCW 1518 members in the BC and the Yukon at this convention.

4: Kim Novak

Kim Novak is the President of UFCW Local 1518, an International Vice President with UFCW International and sits on the Executive Council of UFCW Canada.  She has worked on behalf of UFCW 1518 members with the local for over 15 years and is committed to amplifying the voices of members in all sectors of the membership in BC and the Yukon on a local, provincial, national and international level!  She is asking for UFCW 1518 member support to elect her to continue this work at the 2023 UFCW International Convention.

5: Rajiv Mehra

Mission: To provide a superior membership experience with compassion, empathy, honesty, and respect.
VISION: Fight for the rights of the members regardless of age or gender. Commitment to advocate and inspire others to be a voice in our union UFCW 1518.
About Me: I am honored to be a vice president of UFCW 1518, chief shop steward and chairperson of health and safety committee at Grand River Foods. After revewing my credentials and commitment for resolving issues and supporting members for their rights, I hope you will give me an opportunity to advocate for members’ as a delegate for the UFCW International Convention.

6: Linda Wilson

Hi my name is Linda Wilson, I am a Community Health Worker from Port Alberni and long-time UFCW1518 member.  I’ve been a shop steward and OHS member rep in my worksite and Executive Board member for almost 5 years.  I am currently on the bargaining team for Community Health.  With UFCW1518 I have helped lobby government on things like common employer language and paid sick time for all workers in BC.  I am a vocal advocate for workers and worker safety and will continue to push for fair treatment for all.

7: Christine Holowka

Hello, (Tansi). I’m  Christine Holowka, a 35 year member of UFCW 1518 and cashier at SOF. I have been on  the Executive Board since 2012 and SOF  Negotiating Committee since 2013. I serve on the Provincial Indigenous Committee and the National Human Rights Committee. It would be an honor to attend the International Convention as a delegate, bringing my culture and experiences in the grocery sector as a Cree/Metis woman. Learning from others, bringing that knowledge back to membership and committees, I believe would benefit the diversified membership I serve. I look forward to the opportunity.  Thank you. (Miigwetch)

8: Eleanor Smith

I have been a Community Health Worker in Penticton for 36 yrs. I have been a union activist from the time we voted to become part of UFCW 1518 34 yrs. ago. I became a shop steward and continue to be one today. I also have the privilege to represent the Health Care Sector on the Executive Board and on the bargaining committees. While raising our 3 children I was a leader in Girl Guides and watched a lot of Taekwondo. If asked what my hobbies are my husband would say the union members.

9: Peter Dombrowski

Chilliwack – Safeway General Clerk (Cashier, Service Clerk) 35 years, currently at #4920 – Fleetwood, Surrey. Safeway bargaining committee 2013/2018/2023, 1518 Executive Board member since 2018. Should I be elected, I’ll take my past Convention experience of representing you and 1518 at the BC Federation of Labour Convention (2018/2022) to the International Convention, and look forward to networking with international delegates on your behalf.

10: Jaime Emerson

RPhT. ~ Save-On-Foods #2208 Pharmacy Assistant – UFCW 1518 Member 24+ years; UFCW 1518 Executive Board Member; UFCW 1518 Returning Officer; UFCW National Women & Gender Equity in the Workplace Committee Member; FVLC Executive Board Member; SOF 2208 Shop Steward & Health & Safety Rep. My passion for activism began as a Bargaining Committee Member for the Save-On-Foods Reopener in 2018 … and I have honestly never been the same. The opportunity to represent my colleagues, peers & fellow Team Members, in any capacity excites me, and my eagerness to achieve what’s in the best interest of all UFCW 1518 Members inspires me.

11: David Diamond

Hello here is my bio. I am a 22 year executive board member and have served the membership proudly on 5 consecutive rounds of bargaining. I am currently a sitting member of your Finanacial Committee.

12: David Gutierrez

Hello sisters, brothers, and friends! I work for Save On Foods in Surrey, where I am a Shop Steward, advocating for workers on Health & Safety issues, and enforcing the CBA. In 2018 and 2020 I sat on the bargaining committee where we successfully negotiated terms and improvements for all workers. I also am on your Executive Board, where I have the critical role of passing policy that focuses on the needs of our members, and ensuring our union’s finances are healthy. I look forward to this opportunity to represent our union on an international level!

13: Robert (Bob) Milan

Since becoming a member in 1986, I have not stopped defending my co-workers and their rights. In 2005 I became a shop steward and 10 years later, I was appointed as an executive board member. I have represented and fought for union members at contract negotiations, financial reviews, and policy reformations.

Outside of work, I spent 9 years coaching an elite fastball team and was elected director and vice president of the league for 6 years.

Honesty, integrity, reliability is what I stand for. With 36 years of service, I have and always will fight for UFCW members.

14: James (Jimbo) Grant

Hello this is my bio. I have been with Save On Foods for 35 years and a shop steward for 30. I was on the bargaining team in 2018 standing up for the rights of our members. My father was a shop steward and stood up for himself and his coworkers and I am proud to carry on with those values. In my 35 years I have worked in 7 stores and made connections which carry on today. I will continue to fight for a fair contract for our hard working members and would be honored to represent Local 1518 at the International Convention.

15: Kevin Sparkes

I have been employed at Sunrise Poultry in our Industrail sector for 35 Years. I have been Chief Shop Steward, member and co-chair for the Health and Safety Committee for 30 years. I was elected to the Bargaining Committee for the past 10 rounds of Bargaining. In 2014 I had the privilege to work in the UFCW Local Hall as a Temp Business Representative. I believe that with my past experience and knowledge in the Labour movement, and member of the Executive Board, I would be a good delegate to represent UFCW 1518 at the International Convention.

16: Jennifer Vecchio

I am a Community Health Worker in Nelson British Columbia Canada. For 37 years I have cared for seniors and the disabled. At this time, starting as the Local Shop Stewart. During this time, I was instrumental in developing the first Health and Safety Policy guide for Nelson Home Support. In 1996, I joined the Executive Board for United Food and Commercial Workers 1518, and hold the position as Vice President.

17: Marlene White

I’ve been with Safeway for over 5 years. It didn’t take long for me to jump right in to support my co-workers as I saw change and leadership needed to happen!  I volunteered to be Shop Steward after just 4 months and I’ve been in that role ever since. I was just voted in for a 2nd term and I’m thrilled! I do the stores schedule audits, I attend our quarterly JLM’s and I ensure the language in the CBA is being upheld! I look forward to continuing to represent UFCW 1518 in my work place and am open to any other challenges and/or opportunities ahead!

18: Kathleen Kozak

I am an Advisor, new Shop Steward, and the longest-serving JOHSC Employee Representative at the MEC Vancouver Flagship Store. I take pride in ensuring a positive, safe and inclusive work environment for all. I have completed Health & Safety Essentials, Mental Health First Aid, and Bargaining 101 with UFCW 1518. I know a healthy labour movement can accomplish great things together, and I am passionate about making this my mission. I am also a strong communicator who enjoys working collaboratively. With your vote, I hope to continue representing your interests and thank you kindly for your support.

19: Sheryl Wager

20: Ian Dickson

I work at Freshco 8938. After almost 30 years at Safeway I find myself navigating a world of a very limited and substandard union contract imposed upon us. It has been interesting, challenging and rewarding experience. I am a Shop Steward and also a member of the heath and safety committee. It really has been a learn as you go situation for me. I find myself becoming a much more active member in the union through circumstances. I enjoy helping out first time union members learn what it means to be Unionized as most of our employees have either never worked in a unionized workplace.

18: Kathleen Kozak

I am an Advisor, new Shop Steward, and the longest-serving JOHSC Employee Representative at the MEC Vancouver Flagship Store. I take pride in ensuring a positive, safe and inclusive work environment for all. I have completed Health & Safety Essentials, Mental Health First Aid, and Bargaining 101 with UFCW 1518. I know a healthy labour movement can accomplish great things together, and I am passionate about making this my mission. I am also a strong communicator who enjoys working collaboratively. With your vote, I hope to continue representing your interests and thank you kindly for your support.

22: Hui Zhao

I am a Community Health Worker for the last 7 years with Fraser Health. And have had an extensive, wide range of Care Aid positions. I love my work and am very committed to my clients’ support for their health and well-being. I am married, have a son in Toronto, and live in Coquitlam with my husband. My second passion is being the best gardener possible. I have an extensive network of friends in the community who share and collaborate on best gardening practices. I hope to be an effective, contributing delegate.

23: Wei Lu

24: Catherine Boucher

I have worked for Safeway in Quesnel B.B. for 33years and have been a shop steward for about 20 years.  During my time with the union I have had the privilege of meeting so many wonderful people and have learned lots along the way. I am hoping that the contract we are working on now will encourage the current and future employees to make a career out of this company. I enjoy speaking up for our younger employees and helping them learn to stand up for their rights. Thank you for the opportunity to attend the 2023 convention.

25: Margaret Gonzalez

My name is Maggie Gonzalez. I have been at Save on Foods for almost 5 years. I have worked at the cashier position, produce dept and wherever is needed. One of my positions at Save on Foods is: Jr. Shop Steward and am currently the Worker Co-Chair of the Health and Safety Committee. I am a wife to my husband Andre and a mom of 2 girls; Reya (5) and Ava (3). I hope to make a difference wherever I go and to advocate for those that need my help, especially in the workplace.

26: Becky Axon

Hi, I’m Becky, here’s a bit about me: I’ve worked for Save On Foods for 15 years, and have been involved with our Union for the last 7 years. In that time, I became a Shop Steward, which is a role that I take seriously and enjoy greatly. I’ve completed numerous education courses, all of which have deepened my knowledge on stewardship and advocacy work. This International conference piques my interest because I want to continue to learn about global issues, and how I can affect change. I commit to bringing back information learned at this conference to my peers.

27: Ortenzia (Tia) Sama

I have been a UFCW 1518 member since 1996 and currently working at Safeway in Kamloops B.C. I am actively advocating as a shop steward and have been for the last 10 years. I believe that Knowledge is power. I perform my role with the outmost respect and integrity to make a happy and healthy work environment. My goal is to be my best self , and to be an example for others to follow. I wish all the nominee’s the best of luck.

28: Pavle Knezevic

“Be powerful yet humble; strong yet gentle. Positive attitude makes all the difference.” Extremely passionate about Food, People, Service and Technology, Pavle has been a part of Urban Fare since its inception. Over 20+ years, Pavle took on various roles and projects. While living life to the fullest, Pavle also obtained several IT certifications but his favourite statement is:  “No matter what my industry or job description is, I am in People business”. Avid Star Wars fan, Pavle can be heard often saying: “May the Force be with you.” When off work, he travels the world with his family.

29: Janet Chambers

30: Cory Christoffersen

31: Remmy Mpitarusuma

32: Timothy Hengen

33: Jennifer Lush

Save on foods Sapperton 916! My years of service is 19 years! This includes being with Thrifty Foods and the transitioning to a Save on foods! My current roles are; cash office, payroll, schedule writer! I am one of our shop stewards and I am also a worker rep on the health and safety committee! In 2020 I got personal achiever! Im wanting to go to the convention to bring back more knowledge for my team at 916 so I can be the best shop steward that I can be 🙂

34: Tammy Joyal

35: Carol Elliott

36: Erin Davidge

Erin has been with Safeway and then Save on Foods for 24 years, being the only Shop Steward in her store for over six of those years. Strike votes, quarterly review committees and frontline cape-wearing during a pandemic… Who doesn’t love a challenge? Dislikes: “Unprecedented times”, “Operational needs”, “the word “moist”. Likes: Poking management with a stick, Keeping her coworkers fed with homemade baking, Watching Korean dramas.

37: Santokh Maird

38: Rob Stevenson

With over a decade of experience working at the Safeway in Caulfeild Village, I’ve been not just a cashier, but many different roles throughout the store – a bakery front-end, a florist, a file maintenance helper, a fruit cutter, and even a new-hire trainer. I’m always looking for opportunities to learn more so I can be an asset to my co-workers and to my union. After attending the retail conference in November, my appetite has been whet. Now, as bargaining approaches, I’m eager to find out even more and bring that knowledge back to my store. Thanks for your consideration.

39: Janaya Lal

40: Yi Chung (Ryan) Chang

41: Tamara Bredo

I have been with Save on Foods for 6 years. I started as a cashier and moved up to Department manager. I enjoy helping my team members which is why I joined the health and safety committee 4 years ago and am involved in the food safe program. I believe in fairness for all and work hard to make sure this is practiced in our store. I love to learn about our union, as well as teaching and using the skills I have. I look forward to continuing to grow with the company and my union.

42: Clint Walker

43: Han Seng Khor

I work at Lilydale ( A Sofina Foods Company ) in Port Coquitlam. It would be my 32 years of service at Lilydale this year. I also have been an active member of UFCW Local 1518 since a member. I served as a Shop Steward, Grievance Committee as well as acting Chief Steward. I have recently been elected as Bargaining Unit Negotiating Committee. I am thrill to attend the upcoming 2023 UFCW International Convention. I will impart the experience and knowledge I have learned from this convention to the members. Please vote for me. Your Vote is very much appreciated.

44: Carol Harrison

I have been a member for 34 years a shop steward for 9 years and am also a delegate on the NCL for about 4 years. I had a wonderful oppertunity to take a course with the NCL winter school, it was fantastic to take the activism  seminar to see so many like mined people and youth taking action and learning. I enjoy being a shop steward and helping members in my store and appreciate the trust they have in me while I try to resolve the issues they bring forward. I hope to have the opportunity to be part of this upcomming event!

45: Rachel Kirk

46: Yasmin Ali

I have been with UFWC 1518 since 1988 when I started working for Save-On-Foods. Throughout the 34 years of work, I have had my ups and downs, and the union has always been there to help out.  It’s always important to know that there are resources thru the union which one can access to get the needed help.  I especially appreciate the union doing grievance on my behave with my employer to keep my newly created job at the time 13 years ago.  As a pharmacist technician working at SCP I would be honoured to represent our union UFWC 1518 at International Conference.

47: Fahdil Mohammed

I’ve worked for Safeway the last 11 years in various jobs and stores.  I’m currently working for Safeway as a grocery manager. I’ve spent time the last few years working finishing my Marketing Degree. I’m a believer that a strong union creates a strong work place. I’m looking to provide my insights on how we can grow and expand the voice of our union and members.

48: Paulette Tremblay

49: Kelly McFarlane

50: Dennis Sato

I’ve worked for Safeway for 32 years. (29 years in one store at 138, Richmond) Shop Steward for 14 years. Service clerk, cashier, File maintenance clerk,  Cash office, Customer Service Desk, schedule writer, order writer, Bakery front end, Store Mentor/Trainer, Health and safety committee member, grocery clerk, night crew. If there is a 1518 job in the store, I’ve done it.  I bring three decades of experience. Also volunteered in minor hockey for  15 years. Coached, managed,  Association Executive,  League administrator, BC Hockey referee and Referee In Chief. I bring accountability, reliability, dedication and commitment.

51: Sulma Dricos

52: Sharon Little

I have been with Save On Foods since 2001; supporting the role as union steward for 10 years. I’m currently involved with training and recruitment for store openings across western Canada. I am a passionate leader in our stores as well as the community. Have volunteered and helped organize many fundraisers including –  Heart and Stroke/Run for the Cure/Nanaimo Mountain biking community/ Ladysmith Light Up and Children’s Hospital. Single mom who stays fit through cycling, running, and lifting heavy things. Authentic, genuine and a great listener; a bit outspoken but always for the right reason; I enjoy learning, and laughing.

53: Gitanjali Praharaj

54: Karla Schultz

My name is Karla Schultz and I live in beautiful Chilliwack, BC. I am a mother of 3 sons and I’ve worked at Safeway and been a member of UCFW 1518 for 17 years. Almost 10 years ago I served on the negotiating committee for our current contract. Since then, I have enjoyed serving members in my store as a shop steward.

55: Wesley Harmon

My name is Wesley. I work at the Buy Low Food. I am the first aider on the graveyard shift. I  am a father of three children and am a people person!  I would be honoured to serve as one of your delegates at the International Convention.

56: Cheryl Gordon

I work in the Tri-Cities as a Community Health Worker. I have been with Simon Fraser Home Support ( Fraser Health ) for 32 years. I am outgoing, dedicated and open minded. I believe that I should work on my professional skills and be open to learning new things whenever possible. My passion is to help my clients with daily living but it is my clients that inspire me to continue to stay in this field for as long as I have.

57: Kalwant Singh

58: Frances Sketch

It would be a honour and privilege to serve the staff of Save on Foods as an elected member of local 1518. I have been a Save on Foods staff member for over forty years , with (hopefully) many more to go. Like most of you, I am deeply invested in ensuring safety in the world place and am confident that with my years of dedicated service to my fellow union members that I would be able to successfully  contribute to 1518 as  a elected representative for my membership.

59: Michael Oke

I have been an employee of 1518 UFCW for more than 40 years and have served as a Store Level Shop Steward for 20 of those years. I have been to conventions, local and international, and was able to effectively share my knowledge and experience with my team members. My networking enabled me to make many connections and long-lasting friendships and I would like to serve as your representative at the upcoming convention.

60: Bryson McLean

I work at save on in Fort Nelson British Columbia I have been with the company for 17 years. I was a shop steward for a number of years and enjoy learning everything that I can. I am also an active Elks member in my community and love being involved. I have a 4 year old daughter and love to spend my time with friends, family, and the community itself.