I am sitting at my campsite writing you a quick note to close out the 2020-2021 year. We are camping at Chicahominy Riverfront Park for a week. The campground is located along the Virginia Capital Trail so we have been able to bike between 10 and 18 miles each day, along with walking along the trail other times. There are geocaches located along the trail for over 17 miles, every 0.1 miles apart so we have had plenty to do this week. We also participated in the annual Cap2Cap Ride which fell on Mother’s Day, which was also my birthday! Nothing like a party to celebrate, right? The ride was different this year than in the past but improved from last year when it was cancelled. Our next trip will be to Block Island in Rhode Island to stay at a B&B for a few days, again bicycling each day to explore the nine square miles of the island.
While this past school year has been challenging in some regards it has also been a blessing. My schedule isn’t as booked as it typically is and I really quite like that. I do not believe that my husband and I will return to substitute teaching and I have been decreasing my involvement in some organizations. NYSUT’s RC #45 is still doing well and flourishing in spite of the pandemic so I am quite proud of that. We are looking to establish some Zoom membership meetings for 2021-2022 and ideally an actual in person meeting as well!
As officers and board members, we are always thinking of ways to encourage more retirees to remain active within our organization. It was, as always, a topic of discussion at our meetings, our contiguous meetings and our statewide Zoom meetings. I would like to encourage you to sign up on our website ( NYSUT-rc45.org ) or on Facebook because NYSUT is continually offering online opportunities for personal growth and topics of interest. One such Zoom meeting will involve Richard Wolff, a professor of economics at New School University. He will be talking about the historic role of unions and the future role in creating healthy and safe work environments. Wolff has devoted his career in both academics and public speaking to understanding the economic system as it involves the workforce and the impact of unions on the workplace and this should be an interesting discussion. All retired members were invited to to join the conference but we were only able to invite the members who have created a log in on our website or the retirees who have joined our Facebook group.
Take care, stay safe and enjoy your summer!
Vicki President, NYSUT RC #45
🌿 We have done it! Spring is around the corner, I see our snow banks decreasing every day right now! Daylight savings is always welcome, giving us the extra hour of daylight at the end of the day. With spring this year we also have the hint of the decline of the effects of the pandemic on our lives. Our plans to travel again may resume shortly. Visiting with good friends and a meal shared at a restaurant aren’t so far fetched anymore. Governor Cuomo announced that beginning April 1, domestic travelers no longer need to quarantine after entering NY from another US state. While we are still required to complete the NYS traveler form this is a huge announcement in my mind.
RC #45 continues to work behind the scenes with remote modifications in place for our safety. Our last meeting together had 100% attendance with Zoom. No one had to drive anywhere and we were able to meet to accomplish our agenda, have some friendly banter and then resume our regularly scheduled day. I actually see this as an option moving forward, even without COVID-19 protocol in place. We have the Representative Assembly fast approaching where we will “attend” the conference remotely this year. Breakout sessions at my last two conferences were well done and easily maneuvered..... and I never moved out of my living room chair.
We have a virtual ED #51 meeting on March 23 where we will be reviewing and discussing union issues in an open forum. Loretta Donlon, our very own Director of ED #51 will be facilitating. It will be great to see our union friends and resume a feeling of normalcy.
If you haven’t registered on our RC #45 website please click here to do that. It is the most efficient means we have to communicate with you. Thank you to those of you who have created a profile and also to those who have mailed in their voluntary contributions.
Please stay safe and healthy. Let us know what you need from us to continue living your best lives. We are a phone call, letter or email away.
Vicki Darrow - President, NYSUT RC #45
Tuesday, October 13, 1:30 PM
A secret ballot election for the following offices is scheduled to take place via mail ballot election upon completion of this meeting.
2nd Vice President
NYSUT Delegate (3)
NYSUT Alternate Delegate
RC Director (5)
AFT Alternate Delegate
Nominations may have previously been accepted for these positions. Additional nominations may be submitted in person at the scheduled virtual elections Zoom meeting listed above. All positions are for a three-year term.
All RC 45 members are eligible to vote in these elections. RC members who wish to receive a mail ballot for this election must register for and attend the elections Zoom meeting scheduled for Tuesday, October 13, at 1:30PM in order to request a ballot.
To register for the virtual elections meeting, please visit:
Hello Fellow Retirees,
Happy New Year!! I just returned from a wonderful walk in 40 degree temperatures, in CORTLAND, NY. It is a new year and RC #45 has a renewed sense of purpose.
New leadership is taking charge in our country. Vaccinations are out there for our retirees and frontline workers. We are back to being able to hold meetings, virtually, but still meet! The last board meeting we held this month had 100% attendance for us because weather was not an issue!! Our officers and board members did not have to spend more time getting here in their cars than we actually took to conduct our meeting. A new way of doing business that is more cost effective and more user friendly. We would also like to encourage our members to create a profile on our website so that we may have a quick way to communicate with you regarding time sensitive information. Further along in this article our Webmaster (and Board Member) Tom Gath will outline the process for you. We do not share your email addresses, we intend to use them solely to communicate with you.
I am grateful that after the last newsletter was mailed out we received several voluntary contributions, thank you to all of you who sent yours in!! We also had a new retiree step forward and volunteer to act as our secretary. We are proud to announce that on January 6, we appointed Paul Davis as our NYSUT RC #45 secretary. Paul rounds out our board quite nicely and you will read a brief note from him later in this newsletter. How gratifying to have my pleas for retiree involvement not fall on deaf ears. We do need to continue to hear from you, your questions and with what do you need assistance? We still have over 40 districts that are not directly represented in our retiree council. We are your voice and your connection to NYSUT – let us speak for you.
Retiree Services is planning the launch of a series of webinars for February. Topics include: Covid and Vaccinations (2/3), Valentine’s Day Cooking Class (2/10), Chair Yoga (2/17), and a Cabin Fever Music Festival (2/24). The dates for all sessions are tentative at this time, and each one will run for no more than 60 minutes. More information is forthcoming on the NYSUT website: https://www.nysut.org/members/retirees
In solidarity, Vicki Darrow
President, NYSUT RC #45
As August winds down and September draws near the absence of the back to school stress that we retirees used to have this time of year is mostly absent. Yes, it still presents itself to us but the feeling is quickly dismissed with a sigh as we relaize, "Yay!! I'm retired!"
August has traditionally been the month of the NYSUT Leadership Conference and 2020 is no exception. NYSUT opted for a virtual conference using Zoom. So instaed of the usual 3 days away from home to learn and share, this year was 3 days at home for the Union leaders. With daily Keynotes and breakout sessions the Conference flowed much like the typical in-person conferences did except on the breaks you had to make your own snacks and drinks. The NYSUT team did a wonderful job of setting up the virtual conference sessions and discussion "Zoom rooms" and when it was over the inspirsational feelings of new ideas was evident in the participants reviews.
RC 45 was represented by its leaders as were retiree councils from the tip of Long Island to Buffalo. The theme of the Conference and the subject of the opening keynote was "Union For Life! The importance of strong retiree activist networks". The breakout sessions that followed throughout the three days were focused on creating, maintaining and leveraging these networks. Here are some of my take aways from the sessions that I attended:
1. The member email list is the heart of the member network. There are many ways to reach members today however there is no substitute for doing the hard work of creating and maintaining a database of member contact information.
2. Using the above mentioned Member contact list, there is a clear move toward digital communication among members.
3. Our pension fund is still fully funded even after the Pandemic.