Wednesday, December 21, 2011

SEIU Official in Hot Seat over Affair with Staffer

Steve Matthews & Dave Regan
Looks like Steve Matthews, the Executive Director of SEIU Local 721, is facing growing problems for his extra-marital romance with a union staffer. Check out the message below, where Bob Schoonover (Local 721's president) announces that an “independent investigator” will be appointed to examine “allegations against our Executive Director.”

Meanwhile, sources tell Tasty that things are kinda crazy at the union’s offices in Los Angeles. Matthews’s mistress has reportedly gone missing for the past week, and staffers speculate that Matthews placed her on medical leave in an effort to quiet the controversy. On the other hand, it's possible he's just trying to protect her health. Matthews’s wife is apparently none too pleased about the extra-curricular activities, and she’s reportedly been calling the union’s offices to try to track down Steve’s mistress.

Up north, a staffer at SEIU-UHW reportedly overhead a phone call in which Dave Regan gave advice to Matthews about how to manage the mess. Dave, who’s reportedly had multiple affairs with union staffers, has become an expert in extricating himself from these kinds of sticky messes. Looks like Regan can add “crisis consulting” to his list of special contributions to SEIU, along with his role as "Chief Advocate for the Voting Rights of Workers."

As far as Tasty can tell, it looks like things are gonna get even messier at Local 721. In fact, Schoonover has asked SEIU President Mary Kay Henry to appoint “a personal representative” to help stabilize the union. Fortunately, Mary Kay Henry had the incredible foresight to appoint SEIU’s “Director of Organizational Equity” to help Local 721. (WTF!!) For those who’re wondering how SEIU officials spend your hard-earned dues money, SEIU's "Director of Organizational Equity" earns $152,584 a year... presumably to extricate hormonally charged SEIU officials from their self-made scandals.

Tasty suggests that Mary Kay also appoint an independent investigator to examine Dave Regan’s messy affair with an Executive Board member at SEIU 1199 Ohio. Along with the other affairs.  Oh... and by the way, perhaps Mary Kay might actually investigate why, for the past three years, Regan has refused to implement SEIU’s order to transfer 65,000 homecare and nursing home workers to Local 6434... which, of course, was the supposed reason for SEIU's trusteeship in the first place.

Well, it’s been a tough week at SEIU. Here's Schoonover's memo:
From the desk of Bob Schoonover and Linda Dent

Dear Local 721 Board Members and Staff:

This has been a tough week at Local 721.  Because of the challenges facing our local, Linda and I have asked SEIU International President Mary Kay Henry to appoint a personal representative to help us assess our current situation and to assist us in putting together a plan to build the unity and stability of our leadership team and to strengthen our union.

President Henry has appointed Public Division Director Leslie Frane to serve in this role.  Leslie, along with SEIU Organizational Equity Director Bill Pritchett, will be in Los Angeles this week to speak with Local 721 Board members and staff members. They want to hear our thoughts about the challenges we face and the best path to greater unity within our local.            
Leslie and Bill’s conversations will NOT include any questions that relate to pending allegations against our executive director.   Consistent with the SEIU Ethics Code, those allegations will be investigated by an independent investigator, whom we expect to be named shortly, in a completely separate process.

One characteristic of good leaders is a willingness to ask for assistance and advice in the face of serious challenges.  That’s why we asked President Henry to appoint a personal representative, and that’s why we are asking you to be completely candid with Leslie and Bill if you are asked (through Christina Rodriguez) to meet with them. 

Thank you for your cooperation with this process, for your patience in this difficult situation, and for the hard work you do on behalf of our members every day of the year.

In unity,

Bob Schoonover