From My Inflatable Santa To Yours

Happy holidays to everyone and thanks for reading and participating in this website. 

I'm constantly amazed by what I can learn here, and how many different experiences and perspectives there are to understand.

It's been a great year, and much more is soon to come in 2007. 

I'll be posting intermittently this week, but leaving the  comments open as long as no one goes crazy.

Feel free to read, comment, catch up, and get some rest. 

Alexander Russo.

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  • With apologies to George, (I'm sure he'll be aggravated that I am doing this) I would like to respond to the anonymous attacks on the man.

    1) The best part of this blog and website are his thoughtful comments. Like most people who visit this site, I don't agree with everything he says, but certainly a large part of what he says is amazingly insightful.

    2) To the anonymous blogger who questions what George did at the CTU: George worked his brains out at the CTU, trying to get the Lynch administration to recognize the security issues at schools throughout the City. I know how hard he worked; I was at the CTU at the time. Incredibly, George worked part time for the bulk of the Lynch administration, and he still did more work than most full-time employees did. He visited schools with security issues, and tried to make Lynch aware of the profound safety issues that impacted our members on a daily basis.

    3)George was often frozen out of key decisions under Lynch because his opinions and voice are so strong. That said, George was never silent.George couldn't not speak; his strident positions inside the Union doubtless cost him money; had he been more able to "go along to get along" he'd have had a full time job a lot sooner than he finally got one --the last few months of the Lynch administration, by the way. George's work at the Union may not have been obvious to those on the outside because the Lynch administration did not "highlight" his efforts.

    Anyone who has read this site, read Substance or worked with the man can say a lot about George, but no one can ever accuse him of not working hard for whatever salary he has earned.

    I am happy to speak with any blogger, anonymous or otherwise on this site about George's work ethic while at the CTU.

    Again, I can't say he and I didn't have our differences, but George worked tirelessly for the members, and earned the salary he was paid. (And in the aggregate - he made less than most people who Lynch hired during her tenure.)

  • I agree that paid staff need to be the glue that keep volunteers involved for multiple years. Some of the people in my organization have been involved 15 or more years. I led a tutor/mentor program for 15 years as a volunteer before leaving my corporate job and moving into the non profit sector.

    My point is that well-supported volunteerism increases the number of people who take an interest in kids, and these volunteers should be considered part of a strategy to increase the dollars available to pay for staff or facilities, at schools or in non school CBOs.

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