Faculty union president to step down this month, new president in place

Mark Bergmooser, associate professor of communication, is stepping down after 17 years of dedicating his time as MCCC Faculty Association Union President. 

Matt Bird-Meyer, professor of humanities, was chosen as the new union president. 

Bergmooser has been a part of MCCC since 1996 and started working full time in 1999. He said he has always believed in the value of unions and organized labor and how important it is. 

While working full-time, Bergmooser ran for vice-president of the union in 2007. The union president at the time was former faculty member, John Holladay.

(Graphic by Maggie Sandefur.)

“He had been like a mentor to me and he had a great reputation so I thought ‘this would be a great opportunity and I could learn a lot from him,’” Bergmooser said.

Bergmooser was the adviser for the Agora, the student newspaper at MCCC, for twelve years. He teaches four speech classes along with humanities and film and society classes. 

“In addition, I do the martial arts courses here and I have a kickboxing and taekwondo credit class,” Bergmooser said. 

Bergmooser said over the years, at some point, every faculty member will need the union. 

“When I started, everyone in the membership could need something as small as working out an office hours issue or a complaint against a student to more major things,” Bergmooser said. 

All of the union officers have a term of two years, so Bergmooser will be considered the “past president.” He will still remain on the executive board for two years. 

“The past president is being like an advisor, I’ll be showing Matt the ropes and everything that I’ve learned over 17 years,” Bergmooser said. 

Bird-Meyer has been at MCCC since 2019 and is the adviser for the Agora. 

When asked to take on this role, Bird-Meyer was hesitant and said there was a lot of convincing involved. 

“I took on the role of vice president of member support for CMA and I just got off of being secretary for faculty counsel and I am busy teaching classes, attending conferences and running the Agora workshop, so there was already a lot on my plate,” Bird-Meyer said. 

However, Bird-Meyer has no history with the union, so this is a new experience for him. He plans to bring a new perspective to the role of president as someone who is still relatively new to the area. 

“This is my fifth year here but I came from Missouri, so I’m still kind of getting the lay of the land,” Bird-Meyer said. 

Advice wise, Bird-Meyer said Bergmooser should just take it easy and try not to work so hard now that he is no longer president. 

Bergmooser advised Bird-Meyer to have patience in his new position.

“I’d say get all your facts because there’s always more to the story and try to be patient and don’t jump right on,” Bergmooser said.