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Highlights

Every chapter has moments of which they are especially proud, and Chapter 247 is no exception. And of course, there are the candid moments...


Chapter 247: Let Us Never Fear to Negotiate!

Chapter 247's Arlene Flores, Julia Miller, and Eddie Walker join NTEU National Negotiator Raven Hall in Washington to bargain on behalf of Austin CSCO employees.


Chapter 247's Julia Miller Elected To National NTEU Executive Board!

NTEU National President Colleen Kelley introduces the

2009 Board to Convention delegates in San Francisco.

Chapter 247 Executive Vice President Julia Miller was first elected National Vice President at the 2009 NTEU National Convention in San Francisco, and was reelected at the Seattle and Boston conventions of 2011 and 2013. Julia is one of 15 National Vice Presidents representing 31 federal agencies across America. She was elected by her peers, her fellow Chapter Leaders of NTEU's District 11—the Presidents and Vice Presidents of Chapter 66 in Kansas City, of Chapter 67 in Ogden, of Chapter 72 in Austin, of Chapter 97 in Fresno, and of course, Chapter 247. When the Executive Board of NTEU meets in Washington, DC, to determine which policies it will follow, Julia brings to the table the experience, the values, and the audacity of Chapter 247.

Julia cuts the rug with Frank Ferris, National Executive Vice President of NTEU, at the 2009 Convention (below).

Julia with Owen Smith, late President of Kansas City Chapter 66 and good friend of Chapter 247.


HEROES!

Employees who heroically plunged in to help their fellow IRS workers successfully escape when the Echelon Building they worked in was hit by hate—when, for a brief moment, hate ascended over Austin, only to fall and fail. Below, Chapter 52 President Trish Kelley, Armando Valdez, Jr. and Congressman Lloyd Doggett honor the heroic IRS employees—in a ceremony at the IRS's Austin Customer Service Building, sponsored by Austin NTEU Chapters 52, 72, and 247.


Cruisin' Together on Lady Bird Lake

One beautiful day in May, 100 Chapter 247 members went cruisin' together on a 70-foot, double deck boat on Lady Bird Lake. $10 bought unlimited barbeque, drinks, and dancing, and the scenery upon the lake was even better!

The weather couldn't have been more perfect for Chapter President Eddie (Walker) and the Cruisers, and a major highlight of the three-hour tour was the mystery surrounding the legend of the Congress Avenue Bridge. Would the famous bats living under the bridge show themselves at sunset? And would they make their appearance on cue, while the boat was gliding precariously beneath the bridge?

The bats did indeed materialize. And, as you can see below, they do have their fans, who are more than willing to wait atop the "Bat Bridge" to witness the nightly ritual.


Scenes from Past Labor Recognition Weeks

Labor Recognition Week 2015

As is its tradition, NTEU Chapter 247 mixed it up during its 2015 Labor Recognition Week celebration, with a combination of food, entertainment, and legislative activity.

Chapter 247 staged another popular event, the annual Employee Karaoke Contest. ACS employee Steve Manning (below left) won first prize, Exam's Felisha Turner scored second, and another ACS employee, Michael Kidd, won third place.

Perennial night shift competitors Anasa Brooks and Rick Peterson of CSCO battled to first and second places, respectively, while Daniel Berrera of ACS took home third place honors. ACS' Kelly Bailey captured honorable mention. The night shift winners celebrate together (below).

Accounts Management's new P&A Operation Manager, Larry Canada, steps up to the mic. Chapter 247 luminaries (next photo) support Larry with doo-wops.

Long-running host Robert Muraida emceed, with superstar singer/showrunner Murrah Noble backing up.

Chapter 247 members styling it (below).

Below, Legislative Coordinator and Executive Vice President Russell Bokelman preps for an offsite legislative event at the Austin Marriott. Chapter 247 has a long history of hosting dignitaries during its Labor Recognition Week. In recent years, the Chapter has presented Congressmen Lloyd Doggett, Joaquin Castro, and Henry Cuellar, as well as Texas state senators and activists Gonzalo Barrientos, Eliott Naishtat, and Dawnna Dukes

President Eddie Walker and Executive Vice President Russell Bokelman (below right) introduce Steve Adler to members—including Stephanie Temple (below right) and Dennis Sims (below left)during Labor Recognition Week. Two weeks later, Mr. Adler became Mayor Adler.

                       

2013

As is its tradition, NTEU Chapter 247 mixed it up during its 2013 Labor Recognition Week celebration, with a combination of food, entertainment, and legislative activity.

11-term Texas State Representative Elliott Naishtat praised federal employees and shared humorous stories of his own humble beginnings in public service during NTEU Chapter 247’s Labor Recognition Week.

2012

Texas State Representative Dawnna Dukes gave a shout out to federal employees while visiting the Austin Campus during NTEU Chapter 247’s Labor Recognition Week. During her presentation at the Customer Service Building, Rep. Dukes praised Campus employees for their interest, involvement, and hard work on behalf of the public. The Representative amused and delighted the audience while demonstrating her knowledge on a wide range of issues, including education, health care, and the legislative process.

Afterwards, Rep. Dukes posed for photos with NTEU members, including National Vice President Julia Miller (above). The Representative's appearance reflected a long tradition of Chapter 247 hosting dignitaries during its Labor Recognition Week. In recent years, the Chapter has presented Congressmen Lloyd Doggett and Henry Cuellar, as well as Texas state senator and activist Gonzalo Barrientos. (See classic scenes from past Chapter 247 Labor Recognition Weeks here.)

NTEU 247 also observed its customary dedication to lighter entertainment, once again recruiting the Austin Campus’ showman Robert Muraida to host the Chapter’s annual Employee Karaoke Contest. The crowd overflowed the Customer Service Building atrium, upstairs and down (below).

This year, past successful competitors, the duo Ken and Patti Murray (below), and Kelly Bailey, won First and Second Prizes on the day shift, while Felisha Johnson took home Third Prize. At night, Collections employees Anasa Brooks and Rick Peterson scored first and second place respectively, and David Dabbs of Accounts Management won Third Prize honors.

Felisha Johnson (below) shows how to sell a song, and the audience buys it.

Compliance employee, saxophonist, and soulful singer Steve Manning (below) wows the crowd.

Food, as usual, was an important part of the celebration. The chapter served an Italian-style luncheon and ice cream to a record number of members during both the day and night shifts.

2011

As is its tradition, NTEU Chapter 247 mixed it up during its 2011 Labor Recognition Week celebration, with a combination of food, entertainment, benefits education, and legislative activity.

Executive Vice President Russell Bokelman and Chief Night Steward Mike Bunton can do just about anything if it's about service to our members.

Laurie Walker, NTEU booster and wife of the Chapter President, joins the Chapter Legislative Party at Jovita's.

Chapter 247 is the only Chapter to host Karaoke in the workplace. This year's annual contest received its usual enthusiastic response, as employees stepped up to the mike (below). Winners in the day shift competition: Steve Manning, Kelly Bailey, and Andrea Quinonez were First, Second, and Third Prize winners. At night, Collections employees Rick Peterson and Anasa Brooks tied for first place, while Daniel Barrera of ACS won Third Prize honors.

Karaoke host Murrah Noble (left) runs the show; Accounts Management employee Heather Finley steals the show.

Chapter 247 hosts karaoke in the workplace, but it's the members who are the stars.

Kelly Bailey delivers the goods and wins second prize, day shift.

During Labor Recognition Week, many employees took advantage of the union contract’s provision allowing up to one hour of administrative time to consult with advisors from United Benefits about federal employee benefits (below).

2010

During the 2010 Labor Recognition Week celebration, the Customer Service Building Atrium served as the setting for the week’s events, which included a return visit by Texas Congressman Lloyd Doggett (below), who thanked the audience for “helping ensure that we can be the strongest democracy anywhere in the world, because of the fact that you do your job.” In an introduction, Chapter 247 President Eddie Walker stressed Rep. Doggett’s longtime commitment to IRS employees, calling the Congressman “the patron saint of federal employees here in Austin.”

If you're a NTEU member, Representative Doggett will be happy to answer your questions.

ACS employee Ed Johnson gets face time with the Congressman.

Chapter 247’s Member Appreciation Luncheon was more elaborate than ever, with NTEU serving up Italian cuisine this year. Meanwhile, many employees took advantage of the union contract’s provision allowing up to one hour of administrative time to consult with advisors from Whitten and Associates about federal employee benefits (below). 2010’s LRW thus demonstrated the wide range of NTEU’s interests.

The Chapter's annual Karaoke Contest received its usual enthusiastic response, as employees—joined by Accounts Management Assistant Director Sam Perdue, who fearlessly proved himself “Born to Be Wild”—stepped up to the mike (below). For the first time ever, ACS employees took home all prizes in the day shift competition: Christopher Wilford, Kelly Bailey, and Patty and Ken Murray (Ken is off camera) were First, Second, and Third Prize winners. At night, Collections employees Anasa Brooks and Rick Peterson (right) scored first and second place respectively, and as the number of fingers he holds up indicates, Daniel Barrera of ACS won Third Prize honors.

        

 

Karaoke fans show their appreciation from the balcony.

ACS employees Julian Riano and Jennifer Vazquez duet.

2009

Only NTEU Chapter 247 has the chutzpah to stage a Karaoke Contest in the middle of a call site workplace! The annual Karaoke Contest brings a large, enthusiastic crowd of employees and managers to the Atrium during Labor Recognition Week. Again this year, employees competed during both day and night shifts for prizes, and for the sheer joy of singing or/and showing off. Robert Muraida, per usual, hosted.

Chapter 247 continued its tradition of feeding its members at LRW, with genuine Texas-style brisket. And at the end of the week, the Chapter hosted a Tribute to Julia Miller—Chapter 247's former Executive Vice President, and newly-elected District 11 National Vice President—in the Sweetwater room, at the Omni Hotel, just next door.

               The crowd assembles—in the Atrium, on the floor above, and in the hallways—for Karaoke.

Traditional Karaoke host—Accounts Management's Robert Muraida—warms up the crowd.

Okay, not only do employees sing Karaoke, but now they're dancing in the aisles.

ACS's Kelly Bailey accepts her award for first place in the day shift Karaoke contest.

Charlotte spends quality time with Accounts Management Director Frank Jugo and a plate of brisket.

Compliance Director Jim Clifford isn't from Texas, but he got here as fast as he could!

NTEU members hate to eat and run—so the heck with the running part!

2009

NTEU Chapter 247 hosted former Texas State Senator and distinguished activist Gonzalo Barrientos during its 2008 Labor Recognition Week celebration. From left to right, Chapter 247 Chief Steward Emeritus Sal Macias, Senator Barrientos, Chapter 247 President Eddie Walker, and Chapter 72 President David Travis.

250 people packed the Customer Service Building Atrium—upstairs and down—to hear Congressman

Lloyd Doggett pledge to continue his support for federal employees.


Congressman Henry Cuellar is another favorite guest of Chapter 247.


2009 NTEU National Convention, San Francisco

Chapter 247 Executive Vice President Julia Miller was elected National Vice President at the 2009 NTEU National Convention in San Francisco. Julia represents District 11 on the 2009-2011 Executive Board. Pictured from left to right: Mimi Edwards (D-9), Michael L. Peacher (D-4), Jim Littlejohn (D-3), National President Colleen M. Kelley, Jacquie Bordoli (D-7), Paul Snyder (D-12), Cathy Ziegler (D-8), Matilyn H. Hammond (D-13), National Executive Vice President Frank Ferris, Patti Stone (D-6), Gene Gambardella (D-14), Joe Acosta (D-15), Julia Miller (D-11), Pat Breitenstein (D-10), Yvonne Durden (D-1), Tony Novello (D-5), and Jack Gregory (D-2).

Chapter 247 President Eddie Walker and wife Laurie travel in style—San Francisco-style, that is.

San Francisco-area Chapters show a Texas sense of hospitality as they welcome NTEU

delegates to town.

Eddie steps up to the mike to vote on behalf of Chapter 247 members.

Here's where Management goes when they can't behave…Alcatraz lives!

Delegates to the Convention—including Chapter 247 leaders Eddie, Julia, and Russell—struck a pose in t-shirts demonstrating solidarity with employees of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). NTEU is torso-deep in the middle of an organizing campaign on behalf of unrepresented TSA employees, and NTEU members wearing TSA shirts when they travel exhibit support for workers as they pass through security checkpoints at hundreds of airports.


NTEU's National Legislative Conference 2015, Washington, DC

Chapter 247's took its fight in favor of public employees to Washington, DC in February. Chapter 247 President Eddie Walker, National Vice President Julia Miller, and Executive Vice President Russell Bokelman lobbied Congress and rallied with NTEU leaders from around the nation.

NTEU's Texas delegation feel the love from veteran Congressman Lloyd Doggett (above right).

Chapter 247 Executive Vice-President Russell Bokelman fits right in in Washington.

Congressman Henry Cuellar (above center) is a long-time friend of Chapter 247.

Congressman Cuellar is also a long-time friend of Chapter 247 member Felix Rodriguez (above center), so he signed this photo to Felix.

NTEU's National Legislative Conference 2012, Washington, DC

Chapter 247's took its fight in favor of public employees to Washington, DC at the end of February. Chapter 247 President Eddie Walker, National Vice President Julia Miller, and Treasurer/Chief Steward Karen Lorch lobbied Congress and rallied with NTEU leaders from around the nation.

Chapter 247 President Eddie Walker and National Vice President Julia Miller discuss strategy.

Congressman Bruce Braley of Iowa joins Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) in speaking to NTEU Chapter Leaders in support of federal employees.

Chapter 247 Treasurer Karen Lorch and Eddie make the rounds on Capitol Hill.

NTEU's Texas Delegation lobbies for fairness.

NTEU's National Legislative Conference 2011, Washington, DC

Chapter 247's fight for public employees moved to Washington, DC at the end of February. Chapter 247 President Eddie Walker, Executive Vice President Russell Bokelman, and National Vice President Julia Miller lobbied Congress and rallied with NTEU leaders from around the nation.

Chapter 247 President Eddie Walker (left) and Executive Vice President Russell Bokelman walk the halls of Congress to drum up support for NTEU and its issues.

Congressman Henry Cuellar studies NTEU issues with Eddie and CBP members of the Texas lobbying team.

Congressman John Sarbanes and Minority Whip Steny Hoyer join with NTEU as the union rallies at the Capitol.

Eddie and Kansas IRS Chapter President Doug Moorman hoist a sign for the NTEU Rally.

Virginia Congressman Jim Moran, surrounded by NTEU leaders, speaks on behalf of federal employees.

Russell and St. Louis Chapter 14 leader Pam Sturm explain American politics to a European television crew.

NTEU's Texas delegation show their appreciation to San Antonio Congressman Charles Gonzalez.

Chapter 247 friends—Chapter 97 of Fresno—are enthusiastic about working for America.

The Chapter 247 lobbying team

Every year, during the Legislative Conference, NTEU holds a candlelight vigil to pay tribute to Customs and Border Protection (CBP) employees fallen in the line of duty. The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial serves as the site for union members to remember the 111 employees who—over the 200 years since the founding of the U.S. Customs Service—have given their lives in service to our country.


National Training 2016: Las Vegas

Chapter 247 took its awesome Steward Team to National Training this year. Once again, 247 stood out for its enthusiasm and professionalism. The Chapter received recognition for its continuing high level of membership and won first place honors for its fundraising powers (for the fourth year in a row!).

National Vice President Julia Miller and longtime Chapter 247 friend and FDA Chapter President, Mike Roberts, compete for the title of "Winner, Best Shoes" at NTEU National Training (below left). Meanwhile, the stewards compete for the title of "Winner, Most Studious (right)."

   

NTEU National President Tony Reardon gave special shoutouts to top legislative boosters and Chapter 247 Stewards Greg Roberts, Rebecca Bird, and Juanita Atkins.

Julia Miller rocks the red, white, and blue!


National Training 2010, Flamingo Hotel, Las Vegas

Chapter 247 brought more stewards to 2010 National Training than ever before. The training is intensive, and the expertise offered can be demanding, especially to newbies—but the distractions can be formidable as well.

Chapter Officers Abraham Torres-Mendoza and Tonia Gilmore at National Training's opening session—looks like NTEU had them at "Hello!"

In between sessions, Chapter 247's Stewards moonlight as entertainers. Here Ken Murray, Sandra Little, Mae Brown, Tonya Jones, and their Revue—invoke the spirit of "Proud Mary."

Chapter 247 partners with West Coast Chapters to stage a well-attended reception at the Imperial Hotel. 247's Eddie Walker joins with Customs and Border Protection Chapter 103's Doris Lau (second from right) to support Fresno IRS Chapter 97 Executive Vice President Michelle Gardea as she revs up NTEU's troops.

Eddie (center) and Chapter 103's Doris Lau (upper left) rallies with Fresno President Jason Sisk (next to Eddie).

Perhaps it's the fault of the Las Vegas skyline that serves as the backdrop for the West Coast Region Reception that causes Kansas IRS Chapter 51 President Doug Moorman (left) to lose interest in whatever it is "The Two Mikes," Chapter 247 Chief Steward Mike Bunton and Health and Human Services Chapter 212 President Mike Roberts, are going on about.

Chapter 32's Legislative Coordinator Dave Larkin only drinks the Kool-Aid when it comes from Colorado.

Packing in the crowd...


A Blast From The Past…National Training 2009, Las Vegas

Vegas' Fremont Street Experience offers "the biggest big screen on the planet" with a giant overhead multimedia tribute to the 1960s, set to the song, "American Pie" (above). Eddie, Chapter 46 Vice President Candis Cardenas, and Chapter 247 Vice President Tonia Gilmore (below), are suitably blown away by the moving imagery.

 

What's Important…

During National Training in Las Vegas, the major topic for discussion was the new contract, the 2009 National Agreement, which went into effect on October 1, 2009. As NTEU National President Colleen Kelley has said, "During our 2009 spring training sessions, a number of Chapter Leaders raised several issues with the contract that they thought could be clarified or changed. Over the last two months or so, we have been meeting with IRS negotiators in an effort to reach mutually agreeable language modifying certain provisions of the contract…"

The successor to the 2009 contract was an improvement. Click here to check out the 2012 Contract, in effect now.


And…National Training 2008, Austin, Texas

NTEU National President Colleen Kelley is serenaded by a mariachi band during the National Training Kickoff party in Austin. The celebration was sponsored by Chapter 247, along with fellow Texas Chapters 46, 52, and 72.

Active, energetic, happy in battle...in this corner...the fighting Stewards of heavyweight Chapter 247!

How were we to know there was a party going on? 'Cause the Texas Chapters organized it!


And…National Training 2007, New Orleans

Four NTEU Presidents stride heavily down the neon-lit streets of New Orleans in a showdown with destiny. Watch your back, guys!


Chapter 247 Celebrates 75 Years of NTEU

In honor of NTEU's 75-year history, Chapter 247 designed these fashionable shopping bags. Dozens of members sent in selfies, qualifying them for a drawing that awarded $247 in cash (as in Chapter 247) to the winners. Who won? See below.

Presenting the winners of the 75 Years of NTEU Contest: Sandra Mizell and Angela O'Quinn!


CHAPTER 247 IS A PROUD SPONSOR OF…

                                                                    CEDAR CREEK YOUTH SOCCER !

WE ALSO SUPPORT…

The '99 TEXAS BOMBERS girls' softball team, who finished 9th in the nation in the USFA Nationals in Panama City, FLA!

      "THANK YOU NTEU FOR YOUR DONATION!!!"

AND WE SUPPORT…The Barrientos Scholarship Fund, The

Bastrop Juneteenth Celebration, and many other deserving

events and organizations.  


Chapter 247 Welcomes Congressman Joaquin Castro

NTEU Chapter 247 brought Congressman Joaquín Castro from San Antonio to the Customer Service Building Atrium in March, and the congressman responded to the spirited reception with praise for federal employees, declaring to those present, “Each of you I know takes his job very seriously, in helping make sure that our American democracy and our American government continue to thrive.”

 

Chapter 247 President Eddie Walker compared Representative Castro to famed area leaders of the past: “Like his fellow Texan—Lyndon Baines Johnson—Congressman Castro reminds us what a public servant is supposed to do.”

 

The Congressman responded with his vision of “an infrastructure of opportunity that enables each of us to pursue our American dreams.”

 

Executive Vice President Russell Bokelman and wife Amari celebrate their newlywed status with the Congressman.

Representative Castro happily joins Chapter 247 Steward and Austin AIM President Melvin Tealer in cheering on his home team, the San Antonio Spurs.

National Vice President and Chapter 247 leader Julia Miller shares quality time with her fellow San Antonian, Congressman Castro.

There were light moments as well. Representative Castro made fun of the confusion caused by the resemblance between him and his identical twin brother, HUD Secretary Julián Castro, proclaiming himself, to the delight of the crowd, “the better looking one.”


Another Magical Night: Chapter 247's 6th Annual Holiday Party

Chapter 247 held its 6th Annual Holiday Party on December 6, at the Austin Marriott South. The night out was the biggest and best yet. Click here to see all the action.


National Training 2014: Las Vegas

Chapter 247 has an awesome Steward Team—and they're all trained!


Cruisin' Together on Lady Bird Lake

One beautiful day in May, 100 Chapter 247 members went cruisin' together on a 70-foot, double deck boat on Lady Bird Lake. $10 bought unlimited barbeque, drinks, and dancing, and the scenery upon the lake was even better!

The weather couldn't have been more perfect for Chapter President Eddie (Walker) and the Cruisers, and a major highlight of the three-hour tour was the mystery surrounding the legend of the Congress Avenue Bridge. Would the famous bats living under the bridge show themselves at sunset? And would they make their appearance on cue, while the boat was gliding precariously beneath the bridge? Find out by visiting our Highlights page.

 


NTEU's National Legislative Conference 2015, Washington, DC

Chapter 247's took its fight in favor of public employees to Washington, DC in February. Chapter 247 President Eddie Walker, National Vice President Julia Miller, and Executive Vice President Russell Bokelman lobbied Congress and rallied with NTEU leaders from around the nation.

NTEU's Texas delegation feel the love from veteran Congressman Lloyd Doggett (above right).

Chapter 247 Executive Vice-President Russell Bokelman fits right in in Washington.


Labor Recognition Week 2014

As is its tradition, NTEU Chapter 247 mixed it up during its 2014 Labor Recognition Week celebration, with a combination of food, entertainment, and legislative activity.

11-term Texas State Representative Elliott Naishtat praised federal employees and shared humorous stories of his own humble beginnings in public service during NTEU Chapter 247’s Labor Recognition Week.

Afterwards, Rep. Dukes posed for photos with NTEU members, including National Vice President Julia Miller (above). The Representative's appearance reflected a long tradition of Chapter 247 hosting dignitaries during its Labor Recognition Week. In recent years, the Chapter has presented Congressmen Lloyd Doggett and Henry Cuellar, as well as Texas state senators and activists Gonzalo Barrientos and Dawnna Dukes(See classic scenes from past Chapter 247 Labor Recognition Weeks here.)

NTEU 247 also observed its customary dedication to lighter entertainment, once again recruiting the Austin Campus’ showman Robert Muraida to host the Chapter’s annual Employee Karaoke Contest. The crowd overflowed the Customer Service Building atrium, upstairs and down (below).

Long-running host Robert Muraida emceed another popular event, the annual Employee Karaoke Contest. ACS employees Kelly Bailey and Steve Manning won first and second place, respectively, while AM employee Carmen Rosales won third. Night shift perennial competitors Rick Peterson and Anasa Brooks, CSCO, battled to first and second places, respectively, while first-time contestant Ashley Salinas, AM, took third place honors.


To top off the events, NTEU served members a chicken dinner.

Compliance employee, saxophonist, and soulful singer Steve Manning (below) wows the crowd.

Food, as usual, was an important part of the celebration. The chapter served an Italian-style luncheon and ice cream to a record number of members during both the day and night shifts.


Eddie accepts yet another high membership award from National Executive Vice President Frank Ferris as President

Colleen Kelley conducts from the podium.

Breaking News Staff Highlights Your Steward Benefits Local Action Contact Links Home
NTEU Chapter 247
PO Box 19495
Austin, TX 78760-9495
tel: (737) 800-2470
email: action@nteu247.org

 

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