It was a clean sweep today for supporters of SAG-AFTRA president Gabrielle Carteris at the union’s biennial convention, where delegates elected eight of her allies to serve as the union’s national vice presidents. All eight are listed as supporters of hers on her Unite for Strength slate’s website.
As reported here earlier, Rebecca Damon, one of Carteris’ staunchest allies, was re-elected executive vice president – the 160,000-member union’s second-highest elected office. Seven other Carteris supporters were elected to the national vice presidencies, including:
• Clyde Kusatsu, National Vice President, Los Angeles
• Liz Zazzi, National Vice President, New York
• Michele Proude, National Vice President, Mid-Sized Locals
• Suzanne Burkhead, National Vice President, Small Locals
• William Charlton, National Vice President, Actors/Performers
• Bob Butler, National Vice President, Broadcasters
• Dan Navarro, National Vice President, Recording Artists/Singers
Quite a ruckus was raised during Charlton’s nomination, when Peter Antico, a member of the Los Angeles board of directors, objected to Charlton’s name being placed into nomination. Antico, who lost a presidential bid two years ago, told the more than 400 delegates that Charlton, a leader of Carteris’ Unite for Strength slate, wasn’t even allowed to attend the convention as a delegate because he failed to win election as a delegate in last August’s local elections. Charlton also had lost his bid to win a seat on the LA local’s board of directors.
Carteris ruled Antico out of order, but he persisted until she called for security and had him escorted from the Beverly Hilton ballroom. “Mr. Charlton runs Unite for Strength, and sits on numerous committees,” Antico told Deadline. “He’s not even a delegate to the convention. This is a dictatorship and not a democracy.”
Charlton, however, was a clear favorite of the delegates and, like the other vice presidents, will serve a two-year term. The convention resumes Saturday with a report from National Executive Director David White, consideration of several proposed constitutional resolutions and amendments, and a host of afternoon panels and workshops.