VSEA Chief to Leave State Workers Union for Florida | Off Message
Pin It

Monday, May 12, 2014

VSEA Chief to Leave State Workers Union for Florida

Posted By on Mon, May 12, 2014 at 12:10 PM

The on-again, off-again leader of the Vermont State Employees Association is off, again.

Mark Mitchell, executive director of the 5,500-member state workers union, is leaving for Orlando to be closer to his recently widowed mother, the VSEA informed its members Friday. Mitchell is "in discussions with several unions in Florida and hopes to finalize a contract with one of them in the coming weeks," spokesman Doug Gibson said in a statement. 

Since he came to Vermont in December 2011, Mitchell has ruffled more than a few feathers in Montpelier and beyond.

In the fall of 2012, six of 19 staff members left the union abruptly, several citing Mitchell's hard-charging leadership style as the reason. Last June, he was briefly fired after two top staffers brought complaints to the VSEA's board of directors. After an internal investigation, Mitchell was reinstated weeks later, and the two staffers resigned.

According to Gibson, Mitchell's departure is entirely voluntary.

"When announcing his decision to leave to VSEA staff last week, Mark was emphatic that were it not for the need to care for an aging parent, he would not be leaving VSEA," Gibson said. "He told us he loved the VSEA membership, and he is very proud of the direction the union is heading under his and President [Shelley] Martin’s direction. It was pretty clear that he really didn’t want to just walk away from all the positive momentum that currently exists throughout VSEA."

Gibson said Mitchell will work with the board's personnel committee to recruit a new executive director. Potential internal candidates, according to those familiar with the situation, include legislative director Steve Howard and union representative Bob South, a state representative from St. Johnsbury.

Tags: , ,

Got something to say? Send a letter to the editor and we'll publish your feedback in print!

Pin It

Did you appreciate this story?

Show us your ❤️ by becoming a Seven Days Super Reader.

About The Author

Paul Heintz

Paul Heintz

Paul Heintz is a staff writer and political editor for Seven Days. He wrote the "Fair Game" political column from May 2012 through December 2016.

Comments (2)

Showing 1-2 of 2

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-2 of 2

Add a comment

Keep commenting classy! Read our guidelines...

Note: Comments are limited to 300 words.

More on Labor

Latest in Off Message

Social Club

Keep up with us Seven Days a week!

Sign up for our fun and informative

All content © 2018 Da Capo Publishing, Inc. 255 So. Champlain St. Ste. 5, Burlington, VT 05401
Website powered by Foundation