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State Officers

The elected State Officers are the State President, State Vice President and the State Secretary. The State Treasurer/Executive Director is appointed by the State Executive Board.

JoAnn Johntony
State President
JoAnn Johntony was elected to the office of State President of OAPSE/ AFSCME Local 4/AFL-CIO in 1985. Prior to that, she served as State Vice President. Over a period of nine years, JoAnn served as the Northeast District President, Vice President, and Treasurer. JoAnn has served as President of her Girard City Schools, Local 425, for over 26 years, as well as other positions within the Local (Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer and Chief Negotiator). She is a Head Custodian at the Girard City High School.

JoAnn sits as a Vice President on the State Executive Board of the Ohio AFL-CIO and on the State Financial Committee. JoAnn is a member of the Mahoning/Trumbull Labor Council Executive Board and the Secretary/Treasurer. She is an Executive Board Member of the Ohio AFL-CIO's Area Labor Federation (ALF) representing over seven counties.

JoAnn is the Chairperson of the International School Advisory Committee of AFSCME representing school employees across the United States. Elected in 1993, JoAnn sits as State President of the Coalition of Labor Union Women (CLUW). She has been a member of the Coalition of Black Trade Unionists (CBTU) since 1995 and a member of the A. Philip Randolph Institute (APRI) since 2000.

JoAnn is a graduate of Girard High School and attended the National Labor College (George Meany Labor Studies) where she graduated with a Bachelor of Arts Degree with a double major in Labor Studies & Union Leadership and Labor Administration.

State Vice President

Sandra Wheeler
State Secretary
Sandra Wheeler has served as the State Secretary since 1991 and had previously served as the Northwest Central District State Executive Board Alternate for one year. Sandy has held the position of District President of the Northwest Central District over a period since 1990 and has been the President of the Lima City Secretaries Local since 1987.

Sister Wheeler holds one of the two appointed positions as the Northwest Central District PEOPLE Coordinator on the State PEOPLE Committee.

Sandy currently represents OAPSE as a member of the AFSCME International Union's Women's Advisory Committee. She is a member of the Ohio AFL-CIO's Northwest Area Labor Federation's (ALF) Executive Board and Trustee of the West Central Labor Council (CLC).

Sandy is a secretary in the Lima City Schools.

Joseph P. Rugola
State Treasurer/Executive Director
Joseph P. Rugola has served as the Executive Director of the Ohio Association of Public School Employees (OAPSE) since 1988. Prior to his appointment as Executive Director, Joe served as the union's Field Director and as a Field Representative. Under his leadership OAPSE has grown from just over 25,000 members to more than 38,000, which is one of the most successful organizing records in the labor movement today.

Since 1988, Joe has served as an International Vice President of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME). Joe served as Chairman of the Ohio AFL-CIO's Task Force on Political Action where he created the "Take Back Ohio" program which has helped to reshape the way labor influences electoral politics in Ohio. He served as Vice President of the Ohio AFL-CIO until April of 2007 when he was elected as the new federation President. Joe is recognized in the trade union movement and among educators as one of Ohio's most vocal and effective advocates for working families and strong public education.

He is a graduate of The Ohio State University earning his degree in Political Science in 1972.


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