2023 Candidates for Local 751 Election
To the Local 751 Membership,
In 2020, just before the onslaught of the COVID-19 pandemic, I asked for your support, your participation, and your vote so that I could continue to serve Local 751 as our President.
It was incredibly challenging, but even more rewarding, to shepherd our Union out of possibly the darkest time in our history. I feel that we have come out on the other side more united than ever before.
When the shutdown began, there were significant issues that required immediate action: implementing substantial cost-cutting measures to save the Union money; negotiating Side Letters that in some cases kept people working, provided for continued health benefits, or outlined dates for return to work; and embracing new technology, such as Zoom and TeamViewer, so that the Union office could keep functioning. As Fund Manager, I worked with the management-side Trustees to allow Annuity Fund participants to quickly access their money, even before Congress passed the CARES Act.
I am extremely grateful to my fellow officers, Vice President Fred Santore and Secretary-Treasurer/Business Agent Nancy Palmadessa, members of the Executive Council and most of all, you, the membership. I could not have accomplished all the important work that needed to be done without everyone’s invaluable support. Thank you.
If reelected, I will continue to do what I have done since my first day in office: vociferously fight for meaningful wages, benefits, and working conditions for every Local 751 represented employee.
Once again, I respectfully ask for your support, your participation, and your vote.
Dear Local 751 Members –
With the blink of an eye, 20 years have passed as I have served as a proud member of the Executive Council. I feel like I was learning to sell a ticket just yesterday, and now I am asking for your vote as Vice President of our beloved Local.
The ticket business has been so good to me and has offered many blessings for my growth as a Union member. The friendships that I have forged and the connections that I have made have enabled me to learn the skills necessary to benefit everyone. Now more than ever, it is crucial that we remain involved and relevant in this increasingly technological environment. Vice President Fred Santore has provided many years of inspiration for me to help our Union flourish in the years to come.
Folks, every promise that I have made I have successfully kept with a passionate resolve. I humbly ask that you allow me to continue this journey. We collectively need to negotiate, we need to be united, and most importantly, we need to stay current. If we can achieve this, then I have no doubt whatsoever that the Box Office will thrive for years to come. Our leaders Lawrence Paone and Nancy Palmadessa have a clear vision to lead our Union in a positive direction. I ask that you allow me to assist them in their journey as Vice President.
Join me in the fight to keep up the good work.
Sincerely & Fraternally,
To My Fellow Union Members:
When I ran for Secretary-Treasurer/Business Agent in February 2020, I didn’t think it was possible to be more proud to be a Local 751 member. I was excited about the opportunity to dedicate my energies to protecting our livelihood and our precious Union.
The brutal challenges we faced during the pandemic only served to steel my resolve to do whatever it took, to think creatively and operate nimbly, in real time, so that when it was all over, I would know I did everything I could.
With the incredible leadership of President Lawrence Paone and Vice President Fred Santore, and with the herculean effort of all of you, we did it together. You were at the tip of the spear, fluidly adjusting to new operational processes, technology, and health and safety protocols. You were a constant source of inspiration and enabled Lawrence, Fred, and me to bargain from a position of strength, to the extent possible, given the circumstances. You brought our industry back.
The experiences that I have had during this crisis have further motivated me to preserve and nurture our contracts and to seize opportunities, such as organizing, to grow and secure our future.
Today, in February 2023, I am even more proud to be a Local 751 member than I was three years ago. I ask for your vote so that I may continue to serve as Secretary-Treasurer/Business Agent and work to support, empower, and protect you and the job we all value so much.
“Standing Together! Thriving Together!”
Throughout the pandemic, I glanced at this Union pin on my desk and was reminded of how grateful I am for Local 751 and its strength and advocacy. This was especially striking in the context of theater owners and producers claiming poverty while collecting government aid. These last few years have had a long-term impact on our Union and will affect future generations of Treasurers and Ticket Sellers in ways that are unknowable today. This is why what is done now is so important, so that Local 751 receives the care and investment needed to prepare and yes, to thrive, well into the future.
Looking at all the subtle and groundbreaking shifts that are occurring, I would like to give back and contribute to Local 751 by running for Trustee. Thankfully, the Union is in the process of recovering gradually from the lost revenue that happened during the Shutdown. I would like to contribute to this recovery by helping to grow the Union’s funds while minimizing risk in what is still a relatively volatile economy.
I have been a Local 751 member since 2015 and have seen our power at the negotiating table and the Union’s support in all things great and small. I am currently the First Assistant Treasurer at The Hudson Theatre, where I have worked since its opening in 2017. Please consider voting for me for Trustee. I will work tirelessly to help solidify the financial ground that our Union has built.
As First Assistant Treasurer at The Gershwin Theatre, I go to work every day grateful for the benefits provided to me by a strong Union—a Union with a rich history and an equally bright future. I am running for Trustee because I would like to be an active participant in that future. Financial security is foundational to the success of Local 751, and if given the opportunity, I would use all of my abilities to help the Union strengthen this basic, but crucial, pillar.
As we emerge from a global pandemic that ground our entire industry to a halt overnight, while accelerating industry changes that already had been underway, the need for a powerful Union is more imperative than ever. We were all lucky to have effective leadership guiding us through this difficult, unprecedented moment, and it will be all the more important as we move forward. I firmly believe in a Union based on the values of solidarity and camaraderie, which is both inclusive and expanding, while protective of our hard-won benefits.
If elected, I promise to honor the history and traditions of Local 751 with an enthusiasm for our future and a focus on building our financial strength. There will be more challenges ahead, and I would take great pride in playing a key role in helping our leadership plan for and navigate whatever terrain awaits. I respectfully ask for your consideration and your vote.
Hi, I’m Michelle Whitaker, and I ask for your vote for Local 751 Trustee.
I would like to thank all of you for your vote in the last election. I am asking for your vote again to stay on this journey and always continue to offer my good judgements to the financial management of Local 751’s operating funds.
Since becoming a member of this great union in the year 2000, my career has only been a great success, mostly because of having union brothers and sisters like yourselves, always there teaching and guiding me through it all. As Head Treasurer of the Walter Kerr Theater, I could not be more grateful to this union and you for the support over the years.
Local 751 and the IATSE has been continually pushing us past that awful pandemic, standing up strong for all of us, giving us back our employment, especially since some of us couldn’t see the future of Broadway returning. We have retirement plans with great benefits in place for when that time comes and most importantly health insurance. I want to continue “giving back” given the opportunity.
I will continue to offer you my honesty, integrity, drive, and an openness to hearing from my fellow Union members. Thank you for your consideration and I look forward to serving you.
My name is Tevy Bradley, I'm the First Assistant at the Walter Kerr Theatre, and I have been a proud member of Local 751 for the past 15 years. In that time, I have seen the business change quite a bit. We've seen some ups and downs but I have always been able to rely on the Union to have our best interests in mind. I wanted to take this opportunity to be a part of that and help our Union grow as strong as it can be. Now it's more important than ever to remain vigilant. With the advances in technology and the general attitude in the Broadway community it is important for the Union to remain a steadfast but adaptable presence. Vote for me for the Executive Council and I will fight to make sure our Union becomes more and more valuable with time, no matter what they may throw at us. I believe in our Union and its members and that together we can remind them just how much we bring to this business.
Dear Brothers and Sisters:
I am asking for your vote to join the Executive Council of Local 751. My attention to detail, expertise, energy, and work ethic will undoubtedly help Local 751 become stronger, as we all move forward together.
My name is Andrew Offsey, and for the last six years, I have been an Assistant Treasurer for the New Amsterdam Theatre. For the last thirteen years, I have predominantly worked in ticketing, including nine years with Local 751. My journey includes working for the Baltimore Orioles, the New York Mets, the New York Jets, Sony Music, USTA, MSG, RCMH, TKTS and finally a few theatres on Broadway.
I have earned a BS as well as a Master’s of Business Administration in Sports and Entertainment Management. While attending Towson University, I held a leadership position with the Interfraternity Council for two years. During that time, I increased the financial strength, and physical size of the fraternal system, which got me recognized as Interfraternity Man of the Year.
I see how imperative it is to have strong leadership. Part of what makes our leadership great is that our council is diverse. It is important for our members not to forget where we came from, as well as where we want to go. We need to continue to fight for our wages, our benefits, our rights, and most importantly, our work. You have the power to elect someone who values teamwork and more importantly will fight for every member of Local 751 every single day.
My name is Derek Ranucci and I am running for an executive council position. I started working at the Nederlander theatre in 2011 and since have worked at the Minskoff, Marquis, and am currently at the Gershwin. For the past 6 years I’ve played for the local 751 softball team and this upcoming season will be my second year as the teams manager. I take immense pride in being a member of this union and I look forward to the years to come. Over the course of my 12 years working on broadway I have thought a lot about all of the things this union has provided for me and I think that it is time that I start to give a little more back.
To my fellow Brothers and Sisters of Local 751,
My name is Corinne Russ (Dorso) and I am seeking your vote for re-election to the Executive Council. My previous term on the council was quite the adventure! Between a shutdown and becoming the Head Treasurer of the Richard Rodgers Theatre, serving my term was both strenuous and rewarding at the same time. And I would love nothing more than to continue to serve on the council, along with my position on the membership committee.
Two weeks before I was to be sworn in, our entire industry was shuttered. For 18 months my fellow council members and I met on Zoom to discuss the uncertainty of the future of our business. We continuously kept positive and brainstormed ideas for ways in which to keep our jobs relevant upon our return.
I was fortunate enough to be one of the first people to get back to the theatre when once again the doors to Broadway were opened. To say that the industry had changed would be an understatement. Management and Producers tried to find many different ways to make our jobs obsolete, but we kept fighting for work and continued to get positive results. But they are not done trying to minimize us. There is still work to be done to ensure we stay relevant in this rapidly changing time in our business. We need strong willed, intelligent, insightful people to represent our craft, and I ask for your vote to continue being one of those people. Thank you.
Corinne Russ (Dorso)
Dear Local 751 Members -
Hello, my name is Michael Schiavone, and I am running for a position on the Executive Council. I began my Union journey more than 20 years ago by becoming a member of Local F72 and eventually becoming the President which, I have served for nine years. Currently, I have the pleasure of being the 1st Assistant Treasurer at the New Amsterdam Theatre.
Part of my experience is having a strong background in contract negotiations. I have collaborated with the NY Yankees, NY Mets, and the US Open to improve wage increases, employee benefits, and general working conditions. I am enthusiastic about advocating a voice for all members and to insure everyone’s opinion is heard. In addition, I also have experience in the arbitration and grievance processes. During my tenure as President, I have organized various meetings with board members and attorneys to result in fair resolutions.
As a Council member of Local 751, I would use all my knowledge and experience to increase the wellbeing of the working conditions that exist throughout all the collective bargaining agreements. Local 751 is a resilient Union and I feel strongly that I can assist in overcoming even the toughest obstacles.
Thank you for giving me the opportunity to speak today. I look forward to continuing my Union journey and hope to make changes that will have a positive impact on members.
Dear members of Local 751,
My name is Sarah Shutt and I accept this nomination with gratitude and a desire to engage and serve all members of Local 751.
I became a member of Local 751 in 2016, but my career in ticketing began off-broadway at The Daryl Roth Theatre in 2010. I continued working off-broadway at the Westside Theatre before making my Broadway Box Office Debut at Circle In The Square in 2013. Five years later, I joined the crew at The James Earl Jones Theatre (formerly known as The Cort) with The Shubert Organization in 2018. Currently, you can find me at the Booth Theatre as the First Assistant.
Over the last decade, I’ve had the opportunity to meet and work alongside fellow union members across seven different theatres. After being inducted into Local 751 in 2016, I was invited to represent our local at the 2018 IATSE Young Workers Conference (shout out to co-rep Rachel James!) and feel certain that’s where my interest in continuing to serve began. Following the conference, I joined our Local’s Organizing Committee in 2019. It was a “boots on the ground” effort to engage the ticketing community off-broadway. I look forward to continuing the efforts of the Organizing Committee and contributing to IATSE’s overall mission to organize more members in the off-broadway community.
If elected and given the privilege to serve this membership, I’d welcome the challenges, new responsibilities, and opportunities to grow and build upon Local 751’s many achievements. Thank you for your consideration.
Yours in Service,
Dear Brothers and Sisters:
Thank you for allowing me to serve you on the council the past two terms, but I truly believe I have more work to do. We are still navigating a post pandemic world. Our industry, like many others is evolving, sometimes for the better, and sometimes not so much... Education and mentoring are crucial in protecting our relevance and necessity in this changing society.
Many of you have felt comfortable coming to me with concerns and triumphs. I will continue to be your eyes and ears and bring them to the council. I will fight for every 751 member to be treated equally and have equal access to employment opportunities. I will fight to provide you with the chance to learn new ticketing systems and help improve your skills. I will fight to give you more access to seminars about retirement and savings and protecting your future.
Our future needs protecting. We all need to come together as a united front – a 751 family. My background in ticketing includes concerts, theater, sports and even a museum. I’ve been comforted by my membership and protection under Local 751 in many of these positions, and I have unfortunately had to work without it. You don’t want to be without it. My 35 years in entertainment ticketing gives me perspective and experience. This experience I want to continue to use to better our organization and catapult us to be a revered part of the ticketing industry.
Thank you for your vote!
To My Fellow Brothers and Sisters of Local 751
My Name is John Toguville, and I am running for Re-Election for the Executive Council.
I have been at NY City Center for Performing Arts for the Past 30 years, the last thirteen as Head Treasurer, which has allowed me to take part in many contract negotiations.
I have been a member of the Council for the past 12 years; I believe the Knowledge and Experience that I have gained over the years has helped and will continue to aid the Council in Achieving Future goals of our Members.
Our Industry has changed and is changing every day. Since the pandemic selling tickets to consumers has changed at the request of Management and Theater Owners. They used the pandemic as an excuse to Implement their policies and programs, with these policies we will see and have seen a shrinkage in held reservations and a high increase in Mobile tickets which in some cases caused a reduction in Box office staff shrinking our footprint in the business. We must fight to keep our work and jobs.
We must show Management and Theater Owners every day that we have always been a vital part of this Industry and will continue to be and that we are willing and able to adjust to new ways of doing our work if given the chance to.
Once you have received your ballot, please consider voting for me for Executive Council.
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
I am Greg Turner, First Assistant Treasurer at the Broadhurst Theatre, and I’m running for Executive Council.
It has been a rough few years. I am proud of our membership for surviving the shutdown and bouncing back with enthusiasm. We rarely stop to focus on the huge part we played in bringing Broadway and live events back to New York. Returning to work in a deep fog of uncertainty and mixed messaging, we showed them how it’s done. Now is the time to be considered Essential.
As a union, we were willing to work with employers during unprecedented times. Employers must recognize that good faith pandemic concessions were not an invitation to take advantage in upcoming negotiations. Tourism remains uncertain. The economy has left less money in patrons’ pockets while ticket prices rise. Employers will try to use this against us, without acknowledging our integral role in New York’s recovery.
I support our union’s growth and efforts to unionize enduring off-Broadway institutions. It is beyond time for some of these venues to unionize. It is the right move for them and it is right for us to welcome the workers in where they can thrive and contribute.
I want to keep the union strong, save jobs, and protect our valued pensioners. The world is changing, but live experiences remain treasured and profitable. The service we provide cannot be disregarded or undervalued which is why I am seeking a position on the Executive Council and respectfully asking for your vote.
Dear Friends and Fellow Union Members,
I am seeking your support in my bid for re-election to the Executive Council, a position which I take very seriously and to which I will continue to bring full commitment and engagement. Over the past six years you have given me the opportunity of representing those of you in the arena/concert/sports venue facet of our union. I have been an active representative for you and continue to view it as an interesting, enlightening and rewarding experience.
Our industry is changing so rapidly, in terms of technology, that it is a constant battle to prove the need for treasurers and ticket sellers in the mobile ticketing market. I want to use my spot on the Council to help the union stay aware of these changes and practices from the concert/sports venue perspective and be part of the conversation as our job functions evolve.
My thirty-two years of experience in the event ticketing industry includes my current position - Box Office Supervisor and shop steward at Madison Square Garden. I have participated in two contract negotiations with another potentially difficult one on the near horizon. Box Office Manager/Assistant Box Office Manager at Nassau Coliseum and many seasons at the Jones Beach Theater box office round out the rest of my resume'.
I hope this will help you decide to cast your vote for me. Thank you and I look forward to continuing my work on the Council.
Box Office Supervisor
Madison Square Garden