Kathleen M. DonahueAFT Vice President
New York State United Teachers (NYSUT) vice president Kathleen M. Donahue is a veteran union leader, educator and advocate for many constituencies inside the NYSUT family. In her statewide leadership role, Donahue coordinates the union's program services department, which serves NYSUT's school-related and healthcare professionals, small and rural locals, retirees and new members. The department also provides training in workplace health and safety issues.
Donahue also oversees NYSUT's social service program for in-service and retiree members, and her office monitors healthcare trends across the state.
Donahue brings to elected office more than 30 years of elementary and middle school classroom experience. She served as president of the Hilton Teachers Association for 24 years, and for 20 years she was president of the Monroe County Federation of Teachers, a coalition of area NYSUT locals.
Donahue in 1996 helped create the Monroe County Education Coalition—including superintendents and administrators, school board members, parents, community leaders and union activists—to advocate for Monroe's mix of urban, suburban and rural schools. These efforts brought her into more statewide activities, including positions on NYSUT's board of directors and executive committee. Donahue has served as an AFT vice president since 2005 and currently serves as chair of the AFT committee on retirement and retirees.
Donahue has also served as a mentor and ambassador to unions across the world. She helped launch the Democracy in Education program in Poland to assist the fledgling Solidarity movement. She led an AFT delegation at an international health and safety conference in Portugal and has also represented U.S. unions in the former Soviet Union, Israel, Ukraine and the Republic of Georgia.