AFT Vice President
Martin Messner is the secretary-treasurer of the New York State United Teachers (NYSUT). He taught health and physical education in Schoharie, N.Y., for 11 years at both the junior and senior high school levels, and he is the past president of the Schoharie Teachers' Association. Messner is also the founder and president of the Foothills Area Council of Teachers, a consortium of nine regional NYSUT locals, with more than 1,235 members. In that role, he led a local effort to use television ads to spread a pro-public education/anti-corporate reform message to 1.6 million households and 10 media markets.
Messner was honored with an American Federation of Teachers Everyday Hero Award in 2012 for his efforts to rebuild his community during Hurricane Irene and in its aftermath. He promotes grass-roots unionism, community outreach and proactive approaches to issues, particularly in public education.