Building a More Equitable Future: Percy Winters Jr. Graduates from Harvard Trade Union Program

Percy Winters Jr. is a man on a mission. As a member of the Oregon AFSCME Council 75 Board and Chair of the Equity and Inclusion Committee, Percy is dedicated to building a more just and equitable future for all workers. His passion for social justice has driven him to pursue education and leadership opportunities, culminating in his recent graduation from the prestigious Harvard University Law School Trade Union Program

The Harvard Trade Union Program is a rigorous executive education program designed for labor leaders and activists who want to deepen their knowledge and skills in collective bargaining, leadership development, and strategic planning. The program attracts participants from around the world and is renowned for its rigorous curriculum and distinguished faculty.

For Percy, the opportunity to attend the Harvard Trade Union Program was a dream come true. "I have always been passionate about advancing workers' rights and building a more equitable society. The Harvard Trade Union Program offered me the chance to learn from some of the best minds in the labor movement and to network with fellow activists who share my commitment to social justice," Percy said.

During the program, Percy deepened his understanding of labor law, collective bargaining, and leadership development. He also had the opportunity to learn from renowned scholars, such as Harvard Law Professor Benjamin Sachs and former National Labor Relations Board Chair Wilma Liebman. But perhaps the most valuable aspect of the program, Percy said, was the opportunity to build relationships with fellow participants.

“We were all there to become better leaders for our organizations, and to enhance our unions back home. This program gave us the tools to do so and provided an opportunity to build connections”.

“The friendships and networks that I developed during the program will last a lifetime and will help me to be a more effective leader and advocate for equity and inclusion," added Percy. 

Percy's dedication to equity and inclusion has been evident throughout his career in the labor movement. As a past president of Local 88, representing Multnomah County workers, co-chair of the Northwest Public Employees Diversity Conference, and the current Chair of the Equity and Inclusion Committee for Oregon AFSCME, Percy has led efforts to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion within the union and the broader community. He has also been a vocal advocate for racial and social justice issues, including, affordable housing, health care for all, and immigrant rights.

In recognition of his leadership and advocacy, Percy has been invited to give the opening remarks at the 2023 Oregon AFSCME Convention, which will take place next month in Salem. The convention will bring together hundreds of union members from across Oregon to discuss key issues facing workers and to develop strategies for advancing workers' rights.

"I am honored to have been invited to speak at the convention and to share my vision for a more just and equitable future for all workers. The labor movement has the power to create positive change in our communities and to build a more equitable society. I am excited to be a part of this vital work," Percy said.

As Percy prepares to address the convention, we congratulate him on his recent graduation from the Harvard Law School Trade Union Program and thank him for his leadership and advocacy in the labor movement. His dedication to equity and inclusion serves as an inspiration to us all and reminds us of the power of education, leadership, and community engagement in building a better world.