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Association of Flight Attendants-CWA United Master Executive Council

Mediator(s) Assigned to our Negotiations

Update: August 14, 2009

National Mediation BoardThe National Mediation Board (NMB) has responded to our filing for mediation submitted with United on August 7, 2009. The NMB has assigned mediator John Livingood to our case. John Livingood joined the NMB in April, 2000, as a mediator, working on both airline and railroad cases. Prior to joining the Board, Mr. Livingood had over 19 years of experience in Labor Relations in the rail industry, and over 3 years of experience in private practice as a mediator and arbitrator.

In addition to John, the NMB has assigned Patricia Sims as a senior mediator and coordinator to our case. Patricia Sims will be responsible for our negotiations, as well as ALPA and IAM negotiations. Ms. Sims joined the NMB in November, 1997, as a mediator. Currently, she serves the Board as a Senior Mediator, responsible for the supervision of half of the mediator corps and the administration of mediation cases in the airline and railroad industries. She also remains active as a mediator in airline and railroad cases, and as a trainer and facilitator in Alternative Dispute Resolution cases. Prior to joining the NMB, Ms. Sims was President of Conflict Management Systems, where she offered mediation services, facilitation, interest-based training and dispute systems design. She is a certified mediator with the Supreme Court of Virginia and received her mediation training at Harvard Law School and the Private Adjudication Center affiliated with Duke University School of Law. Ms. Sims' background encompasses extensive labor-management experience derived from 12 years in the airline industry. Of special note, she held full time Union positions with the Association of Flight Attendants from 1989-1995.

Overseeing the mediation services at the National Mediation Board is Lawrence Gibbons. Larry Gibbons joined the Board in September, 1997 as a Senior Mediator. Currently, Mr. Gibbons is the Director of Mediation and has overall responsibility for the administration and management of mediation cases in the airline and railroad industries.

Mr. Gibbons brought to the Board 25 years of experience in personnel and labor relations, practicing under both the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) and Railway Labor Act (RLA). Immediately prior to joining the NMB, he headed Human Resources and Labor Relations with ABX Air, Inc. (Airborne Express) for 12 years and for two years was an independent labor relations consultant. He is a past President and Member of the AIRCON Executive Board. Mr. Gibbons was also actively involved in community activities including serving on a Board of Directors for the United Way and an Adult Rehabilitation Workshop.

These individuals are professionals in the art of negotiations and well versed in negotiations under the Railway Labor Act. However, as we have identified on numerous occasions, the quality of the improvements made during the course of these negotiations will only be influenced by our Solidarity and collective action in support of our the priorities contained within our Opening Proposal.

Mediation will continue until an Agreement is reached or until the NMB determines that further mediation would be fruitless due to an impasse. Throughout the process and especially as the mediator evaluates the status of our talks it is critical that we make a public showing of our Solidarity and insist upon achieving our collective goals as defined in our Opening Proposal. Through our collective action, management and the mediator must understand clearly that we stand firmly behind our Negotiating Committee and that we expect fair pay, benefits and work rules for our contributions to United Airlines.

Update: February 12, 2010

Additional Mediator Joins Our Negotiations

Due to all of the airline worker negotiations currently underway in our industry, the NMB is extremely busy.  A second mediator has been assigned to take part in our negotiations on occasion.  Mr. Iannone joined the National Mediation Board in September of 2009 with 23 years of labor relations experience in the railroad industry as a labor advocate.  Prior to joining the NMB, he served in elected local, general and international positions with the United Transportation Union.

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