Member Notes

Featured News

New Job, New Digs. LERA member Alan B. Krueger (pictured, right), a Princeton labor economist and public policy expert, has been tapped to be the next chairman of the on the president’s Council of Economic Advisers. The appointment must be approved by the U.S. Senate. Catherine Rampell wrote about the appointment in her New York Times Economix blog, “Alan Krueger’s New White House Job.” Krueger, she writes, had his own Economix blog in 2008-09.

New Job, New Digs 2. Shortly after Krueger was named, it was announced that the new chief economist at the Department of Labor was LERA member Adriana Kugler (pictured at left). She is a professor of public policy at Georgetown University. She is also a Research Fellow of the Center for Economic Policy and Research. Her areas of research specialization are the impact of public policies on employment and earnings and immigration. In 2007, she was the recipient of LERA's John T. Dunlop Outstanding Scholar Award. Dunlop was the Harvard economics professor, the Secretary of Labor in the Gerald Ford presidential administration and a president of LERA. Kugler's new boss is U.S. Labor Secretary Hilda L. Solis, was a featured speaker at LERA's National Policy Forum in Washington, D.C., in June.

Silver Linings? NLRB Chairman Wilma B. Liebman (pictured at right) stepped down when her term expired on Aug. 27. Liebman served three presidents including President Obama who appointed her chair in 2009. She was first appointed by President Bill Clinton in Oct. 1997 and reappointed by Wilma LiebmanPresident George W. Bush in December 2002. The Washington Post's Dave Jamieson wrote a revealing column, "Wilma Liebman, Outgoing NLRB Chair, Finds 'Silver Lining' in Political Rancor." Here's part of what the outgoing chairman said: "We've obviously had some very contentious strikes and labor disputes over the years, but this is something of a different nature," Liebman said by telephone the other day while taking a break from packing up her office in downtown Washington after her term ended. "In some respects, all the controversy is welcome because it has brought these issues back into the public eye. That’s the silver lining." There are a number of "Thank You, Wilma Liebman" posts on the EPRN web site.

Rutgers Mobility. David Finegold, formerly School of Management and Labor Relations Dean at Rutgers, LERA member and an Employment Policy Research Network researcher and topic leader, has a new job. On Sept. 1, he became Rutgers University Senior Vice President for Lifelong Learning and Strategic Growth Initiatives. Keeping it all in the LERA family, Executive Board member Susan J. Schurman is taking over as acting dean.

A Retiring Fellow? LERA President Gordon Pavy, director of the AFL-CIO Collective Bargaining Department, retired effective Aug. 1. Pavy (pictured at left) had been a LERA member since 1979, joining shortly after earning an M.S. from the University of Massachusetts Labor Relations Center.Pavy has also been an active Washington, D.C., LERA Chapter member since 1980, serving his chapter as a board member in 1991-94 and again in 2004-08.  Gordon chaired the U.S. Dept. of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics Compensation and Working Conditions Labor Research Advisory Committee from 2003-07, served as staff coordinator for the AFL-CIO Union Veterans Council from 2004 to the present and has been the editor of the AFL-CIO Collective Bargaining Digest since 2005.

Left Coast Public Radio News. LERA President-Elect David Lewin was interviewed on Southern California public radio on Aug. 26, the day after the National Labor Relations Board issued new regulations requiring private-sector employers to post notices of employees' right to unionize. There is a link to the interview here.

Blogger-in-Chief? We’re making great progress of the Employment Policy Research Network, LERA’s foray into online research on employment and work. The most-productive EPRN researcher is Daniel J.B. Mitchell, UCLA professor emeritus and longtime LERA member. He’s also EPRN’s senior academic editor. Mitchell’s weekly blog postings, often accompanied by YouTube videos, come out weekly with the precision of an atomic clock. His Aug.31 post is a YouTube video on California’s new collective-bargaining agreements. Click here to view the video.

Highly Productive. Another highly productive LERA member on EPRN is Ellen Dannin, (pictured at left) Penn State law prof and topic leader of the EPRN Labor and Employment Law research cluster.  She’s also editor of the Labor and Employment Law Newsletter on the LERA website.

Ditto. Other LERA members and top 10 EPRN researchers are MIT’s Tom Kochan, past LERA president, principal investigator of EPRN startup grants from the Rockefeller and Russell Sage foundations and EPRN Steering Committee Chair; Lauren and past LERA President Eileen Appelbaum, UCLA and the Center for Economic Policy and Research, respectively; Christian Weller at U. Mass.-Boston, topic leader of the EPRN Social Insurance research group; Jeffrey Keefe at Rutgers, topic leader of the EPRN public-sector collective bargaining group; and the above-mentioned Senior V.P. Finegold.

Boston to Baltimore. LERA member Adam Seth Litwin, a founding member of the tenure-track faculty at the Carey Business School at Johns Hopkins University, where he has been an assistant professor of management since 2008, accepted an invitation to join EPRN. He promptly posted a research paper, "The Future of Human Capital: An Employment Relations Perspective," that he co-wrote with MIT’s Tom Kochan. Litwin earned his doctorate at MIT’s Sloan School of Management.

Labor-Management Summit in Montana. Illinois Dean, Professor and LERA past president Joel Cutcher-Gershenfeld and FMCS Mediator Joel Schaefer co-facilitated a labor-management summit for public-sector leaders (union and management) in the state of Montana following the legislature’s refusal to fund negotiated four-year collective bargaining agreements.

Streaming Live. Cutcher-Gershenfeld also was an interviewee with longtime LERA stalwart Rosemary Batt (pictured at right) on the University of Illinois public radio station’s Focus 580 show on Sept. 2 (the Friday before Labor Day weekend) discussing “The Changed and Changing Nature of Employment and Work in the 21st Century.” The interview took place on the Friday before Labor Day in Urbana, Ill., with

Rose doing a remote from the Cornell University public radio station in Ithaca. Focus 580 shows stream live on the Internet.  After the fact, they are available on the WILL website as podcasts and by a link from the Employment Policy Research Network.

Labor Day Parade. Rosemary and Joel led the Labor Day Parade on EPRN. It was a long parade.The New York Times ran MIT’s and LERA’s Paul Osterman’s op-ed, "Yes We Need Jobs, but What Kind?” that has its roots in his new book (co-author Beth Shulman) Good Jobs America: Making Work Better for Everyone (2011, Russell Sage Foundation).  Adam Seth Litwin had his Labor Day op-ed  "Companies Must Renew Their Commitment To Workers” published in the Baltimore Sun. Past LERA President Thomas A. Kochan in the Boston Globe wrote about an business-labor-government coalition to create a national infrastructure bank in “Labor, Business Can Unite as Economic Heroes.” University of Minnesota professor and LERA member, John W. Budd had his op-ed, “The Nature of Work, in its Purer Forms," published in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune.

Income inequality. Richard Freeman, LERA member and Harvard professor, was interviewed on a segment of the PBS NewsHour  with economics correspondent Paul Solman's series on income inequality in the U.S. on Aug. 16. View the PBS NewsHour video.

Sage Writing. University of North Carolina sociologist, LERA member and EPRN researcher Arne Kalleberg's new book, Good Jobs, Bad Jobs, was published in June by the Russell Sage Foundation. This is a volume in the American Sociological Association's Rose Series in Sociology. In addition to the introduction to the book on the Russell Sage Foundation website, an interview with Kalleberg about the book is available here. The Russell Sage Foundation provided one of two startup grants to LERA’s Employment Policy Research Network. (The other grant came from the Rockefeller Foundation.)

Eminently Quotable. LERA member and UCLA Anderson School of Management professor Sanford Jacoby (pictured at left) was quoted in Robert Samuelson’s “Labor Day Blues” column in Real Clear Politics. He was also quoted in The State, The Columbus Dispatch, The Omaha World-Herald, Richmond Times-Dispatch, Charleston Daily Mail, The Commercial Appeal, Hot News Update,, and about long-term unemployment and equally long-term economic and political effects.

Social media note. You can find photos from past chapter meetings on the LERA Facebook page. Up now are annual meetings of the Denver, Atlanta and San Francisco. Friend LERA. Also, you can join LERA LinkedIn. There are more than 500 LERA LinkedIn members.

More Left Coast News. LERA member Dennis Dabney, recently of FirstEnergy, is now Senior Vice President — National Labor Relations at Kaiser Permanente in the San Francisco Bay area.

New job? Awards? Honors? Book?  New addition to the family? Your LERA friends and colleagues want to know. Include jpeg photo(s). Send to Emily Smith or Mike Lillich, (217) 244-0725.