Skip to main content

Massachusetts Society of Professors

The Union of Faculty and Librarians at UMass Amherst

About MSP

Poster from the 1976 election to establish MSP

The Massachusetts Society of Professors (MSP) is the union representing over 1400 faculty and librarians on the University of Massachusetts Amherst campus.  The MSP was founded in the 1970s after the faculty and librarians suffered through several years of frozen salaries, deteriorating working conditions, and uncaring or incompetent administrators.  A majority of faculty and librarians voted to form a union, together with our sister chapter, the Faculty Staff Union (FSU) representing the faculty and librarians on the Boston campus. Since that time, there have been many changes to our bargaining unit, and MSP now includes all non-tenure-track faculty, full-time and part-time faculty and librarians.  We have also won many new benefits through decades of activism and collective bargaining, including paid parental leave, a flexible sabbatical bank, promotions to Senior Lecturer and Senior Lecturer II, paid family and medical leave, and many more.

State & National Affiliations

MASSACHUSETTS TEACHERS ASSOCIATION

MSP delegates voting at the MTA Annual Meeting

On the state level, the MSP is affiliated with the Massachusetts Teachers Association. MTA is the largest union in Massachusetts with over 100,000 members (about 14,000 in higher education) and we are considered one of MTA's locals. MTA's members are in every town of the state; therefore the union has a lot of political clout with state government. MTA provides MSP/FSU with a consultant who assists with planning, bargaining and grievances. 2 of MSP’s own members serve on the MTA board and each May, the MSP sends between 20-28 delegates to MTA’s Annual Meeting where the MTA budget and policy issues are debated and voted on. In addition to plugging our local union into a powerful state-wide network, MTA also provides member benefits and discounts which can be found on the MTA Member Benefits page.

 

MTA Annual Meeting

 

NATIONAL EDUCATION ASSOCIATION
On the national level, we are affiliated with the National Education Association. NEA is the largest union in the country and plays an important role in debates around national education policy. One of MSP's members serves as an NEA Board Member representing the state of Massachusetts. In addition to valuable educators liability insurance, the NEA also offers their members a wide range of NEA benefit and discount programs.

Dean Robinson on the importance of MTA and NEA affiliations [Watch on Vimeo]

Bylaws

JOINT COORDINATING COMMITTEE (JCC) BYLAWS

The JCC is the legal entity that associates the MSP and the FSU (Faculty Staff Union) into one local union that spans two campuses: UMass Amherst and UMass Boston. The JCC is the body that bargains and submits our collective bargaining agreements for ratification, formulates and implements policies and programs of the local, and determines whether or not to submit grievances to outside arbitrations. MSP and FSU share JCC expenses including our shared bookkeeper, annual audits, payroll services, and arbitration costs.

JCC Bylaws (PDF)

MSP BYLAWS

Although the MSP and FSU are affiliated with the JCC, the MSP runs its day-to-day affairs independently of FSU in order to ensure that the faculty and librarians on the Amherst campus receive representation best suited to their needs. MSP has its own bylaws to govern our organization on our campus.

MSP Bylaws (PDF)

People

Executive Committee

MSP’s Co-Presidents, Vice Presidents, Secretary, and Treasurer make up the Executive Committee, informally known as MSP officers. They set the agenda for the Executive Board, evaluate priorities and plans, and oversee the MSP budget and operations.  MSP officers are elected by the membership at the spring General Assembly membership meeting.  Officers meet separately from the Executive Board during alternate weeks on Wednesday from 8:45 - 10:00 a.m. The Executive Committee also meets with the Chancellor and Provost once a month to discuss important issues raised by faculty and librarians. Officers serve two-year terms.  

Executive Committee

Co-President

Eve Weinbaum

Labor Center/Sociology, Thompson Hall, 7-0458

Co-President

Marc Liberatore

Computer Science, Computer Science Bldg, 5-3061

Vice President

Sigrid Schmalzer

History, Herter Hall, 5-6776

Vice President

Christine Turner

Collection Services, W.E.B. Du Bois Library, 7-1026

Vice President

Jacquie Kurland

Communication Disorders, Communication Disorders Building #315, 5-4007

Vice President, Grievance Officer

Asha Nadkarni

English, South College, 5-5495

Secretary/Clerk

Kate Hudson

Educational Policy, Research and Admin, Furcolo Hall, 7-3148

Treasurer

Jen Adams

English, South College, 5-5518

Executive Board

The MSP Executive Board is the decision-making body of the union.  Executive Board members are elected at the spring General Assembly membership meeting. Meetings are held every two weeks on Wednesday from 8:45 - 10:00 a.m. Board members serve three-year terms.

Executive Board

Michael Ash

Economics, Crotty Hall, 5-6329

Paulina Borrego

Res. & Learning Services, Science & Engr. Library, 5-7891

Jeanne Brunner

TECS, Furcolo Hall, 5-9392

Maciej Ciesielski

Electrical & Computer Engineering, Knowles, 5-0401

Clare Hammonds

Labor Center/Sociology, Thompson Hall, 5-0577

Christine Ho

History of Art & Architecture, South College, 5-8712

Sandy Litchfield

Architecture, Design Building

Asha Nadkarni

English, South College, 5-5495

Fareen Parvez

Sociology, Thompson Hall

Dean Robinson

Political Science, Thompson Hall, 5-0406

Tristram Seidler

Biology, Morrill III South, 5-2775

Priyanka Srivastava

History, Herter Hall, 5-2751

John Staudenmayer

Math & Stats, LGRT, 5-0999

Kevin Young

History, Herter Hall

Department Representatives and Activists

The MSP Department Reps and Activists are the first line of communication between what is happening in departments and the union. We rely on Reps and Activists to bring to the MSP issues that matter to faculty and librarians, while also letting our members know what the union is planning and how members can be involved.  Department Reps and Activists help MSP advance our mission as a social justice union to fight for more than just bread-and-butter issues, and to be engaged and involved in issues affecting our students and our community.

Contact the MSP Office for information on current department reps or if you are interested in representing MSP in your department.

Contract Bargaining Team and Support Committees

Every three years, the MSP elects a Contract Bargaining Team to negotiate the successor collective bargaining agreement.  This small group of faculty and librarians sits across the table from the administration, negotiates, and discusses any proposed changes to the contract.  At the same time, Bargaining Support Committees are responsible for working on specific issues, formulating bargaining proposals, and mobilizing people to support our positions.

The Contract Bargaining Team for the 2020-2023 contract consists of Eve Weinbaum (Labor Center), Asha Nadkarni (English), Jacquie Kurland (Communication Disorders), Marc Liberatore (Computer Science), Kate Zdepski (Libraries), Heather LaPenn (MTA), Mickey Gallagher (MSP) and Lori Reardon (MSP).

Faculty Advocates

Several faculty members serve as Faculty Advocates.  Formerly known as the Grievance Committee, this group works closely with individual faculty who are experiencing problems or trying to avoid potential problems in the workplace.  Faculty Advocates often accompany our colleagues to meetings, strategize about resolving concerns, and serve as liaisons with the MSP to support our members.

If assistance is needed, the MSP will pair members up with a Faculty Advocate. Current Faculty Advocates are: Asha Nadkarni (English), Kate Hudson (Educational Policy, Research & Administration) and Melanie Radik (Libraries).

Staff

Mickey Gallagher
mgallagher468@gmail.com 
MTA Consultant

Mickey is our MTA Consultant assigned to represent MSP. She assists our local with contract language enforcement through both informal and formal processes and connects us to important MTA initiatives.  

Lori Reardon
Lreardon@umass.edu
MSP Senior Staff
413-545-2206

Lori assists and informs individual bargaining unit members regarding a wide range of issues related to their rights, benefits and working conditions under the union contract. She works with UMass administrators to enforce contracts and resolve issues informally. She also sits at the bargaining table and serves as a resource in MSP contract negotiations and campaigns.  Lori coordinates and facilitates workshops for members (tenure, promotion, personnel committee, PMYR, etc.) and is an invaluable resource for any tenure related questions. 

Emily Steelhammer
steelhammer@umass.edu
MSP Staff/Organizer
413-547-4121

Emily works to recruit new members and union activists in order to build and strengthen the union.  She works on organizing initiatives and coordinates member outreach during campaigns.  Emily conducts new employee union orientations and assists new and current employees with membership questions and concerns.  She also meets with and helps problem-solve workplace issues for MSP’s non-tenure track faculty members and provides staff support to MSP leaders responsible for union governance.

Alisa Brewer
avbrewer@umass.edu
MSP Membership Coordinator
413-545-2206

Alisa maintains and updates the union’s membership records.  She processes payroll deductions in coordination with HR and acts as the liaison between MSP and MTA with regard to collection of member dues/fees. Alisa assists members with questions and issues specific to invoices, payroll deduction and membership status.

Executive Board Minutes

Minutes from meetings of the Executive Board are posted once the Board approves the minutes.

12/1/21: All In report backs, Academic Calendar Change Update, Possible MUM Actions, Fair Share Commitment

11/10/2021: Health and safety updates, bargaining updates, bargaining priorities, internal organizing issues for faculty senate

10/27/2021: Healthy buildings" multi-union and MTA campaign, update on MA House ARPA allocation, internal organizing of non-members

10/13/2021: Health and safety, ventilation, teaching assignments, University Budget, Provost's FY22 planning and budget process, department visits, uncollectibles

9/29/2021: Health and safety, bargaining, academic calendar change, Board and Rep responsibilities

9/15/2021: Health and safety, bargaining, department visits

4/21/2021: UMass budget, report back from Chancellor meeting, MSP listening tour

3/24/2021: Budget updates, bargaining, UMass finances

3/10/2021: Updates, response to administration's COVID failures, UMass budget and finances

2/24/2021: Updates (Vaccines, legislators, staffing, COVID, car caravan action), report back from deparment meetings, small group model, breakout conversations

2/10/2021: Updates- Covid, staffing, meeting with legislators and MSP leadership, report backs from outreach, bargaining updates

11/04/2020: Report back from Chancellor/Provost meeting, report of organizing committee, discussion of Spring planning

10/21/2020: AFRs, budget updates, state legislature races, MTA phone banking, spring planning, coordination with other unions, report back from department meetings, report from WMALF

10/7/2020: Updates, UMass Green New Deal, thoughts and next steps, debrief of membership meeting, creation of new committees, new item-AFRs

9/23/2020: Updates on furloughs and staff, updates on board of trustees, report backs from department meetings and All In conversations

9/9/2020: Chancellor meeting updates, updates on furloughs, staff union organizing, All In campiagn

8/4/2020: Updates on funding and budges, safety and health, UMass Unions United, bargaining updates, All In campaign

4/15/2020: Bargaining updates, FY21 budget, MSP COVID-19 relief dontation, MTA delegates, Board and Officer seats, General Assembly planning, virtual teach-in

3/11/2020: Bargaining updates, MSP leadership structure, continuing Mickey's work with the MSP

2/26/2020: Bargaining updates, internal organizing training, outreach to recent new hires and non-members, lobby day

2/12/20: Bargaining updates, higher education lobby day, All-in campaign, Western Mass ALF dues, co-sponsorship of Know Your Rights panel

1/29/2020: Bargaining updates, higher education conference debrief, department visits, lobby day, retiree program, Western Mass labor union legislative breakfast, Cherish Act trivia night, MSP 45th celebration

12/11/19: Updates, general assembly plans, brainstorming bargaining proposals on key priority issues

11/20/19: Updates, bargaining support committees, spring department visits and MSP's 45th anniversary

11/6/19: Updates on PFML bargaining, UWW impact bargaining, anomaly/pay equity committee and new MSP budget items; uncollectibles, departments co-sponsoring events, faculty transition to retirement workshop

10/2/19: Amendment to MSP donation policy, bargaining update, bargaining committees, reports from dept meetings and organizing plans, plan for joint dept. rep and board meeting, the MSP Connection, retiree membership program

9/18/19: Approval of John Staudenmayer to Board, updates, bargaining schedule & team, All-In and organizing, challenges, bargaining committees

4/24/19: plan for general assembly, CHERISH act and May 16 day of action, dues abatement, update from equity committees, fall bargaining

4/10/2019: Follow up for Fund Our Future, April 30 Cherish Act hearings, May 16 day of action, update on online education, dues abatement

3/27/2019: Report from Fund Our Future campaign, Eric from PHENOM, budget review, dues abatement, non-payer member outreach

3/6/2019: Hampshire College, online education, MTA Annual Meeting, Fund Our Future Higher Education Advocacy Day

2/20/2019: Fund Our Future Higher Education Advocacy Day organizing, department visits, plan for joint board/rep meeting

2/6/2019: JCC bylaw change approval, debrief from Fund Our Future, higher ed advocacy day, updates from joint committees

11/28/2018: Fund Our Future Campagin, retro pay increases, organizing report backs and communication from departments

11/7/2018: Update on contract funding, joint MSP-administration committees, organizing reports, uncollectibles

10/24/2018: Contract update, legislative update, department visits, social media plan, All In organizing, department rep schedule

10/10/2018: Mass RNs and Question 1, Updates (Contract funding and Title IX), All-in organizing and department rep structure

9/26/2018: Contract updates (funding, anomaly process, labor management committees), political agenda and MTA legislative priorities, role of board members and department reps, All-in organizing, department visits

5/2/2018: Debrief from General Assembly, agency fee organizing, VIVO discussion

4/18/2018: Budget, bargaining update (small MSP delegation), Mt. Ida and mass meeting debrief, ideas for General Assembly, MTA Annual Meeting

4/4/2018: MiniVan training, bylaws change, Board of Trustees actions, mass meeting turnout, bargaining update (contract lengths, parameters, NTT leave and equity process)

3/21/2018: Annual Meeting delegates, mobilization for mass meetings, Board of Trustees meeting

2/28/18: Debrief on UUU action, bargaining updates (NTT reappointment language, CPE minimums, salary offer, ULP), update from Chancellor meeting

2/14/2018: UUU day of action, bullying process, education effectiveness plans and student learning outcomes

1/31/2018: Feb 26th day of action, GIC update

12/13/2017: Debrief on General Assembly, Board of Trustees meeting report back, bargaining update (faculty governance), Section 60 and MSERS, Title IX, UPR solidarity

11/29/2107: Bargaining update (parameters and NTT leave), solidarity Wednesdays, plan for General Assembly, corporate campaign

11/8/2017: Bargaining update (priorities and actions), bias in SRTI, practicing All In conversations

10/25/2017: Amazon, Chancellor at town meetings, sexual harassment and consensual relationships policy, bargaining update (proposals)

10/11/17: New bully policy, All In conversations, department visit feedback

9/13/2017: Library compliance officer, uncollectibles, parameters update, petitions for minimum wage and paid family medical leave, All In campaign, department vists

9/27/2017: Upcoming events, all union meeting, department visit talking points, John McCarthy and Michael Eagen visit