Thursday, February 17, 2022

It is with great sadness that I let you know that Michael Herz has resigned from the UWSA Board and his committee engagements as of January 31, 2022 citing personal matters. Mike has been a constant presence in our Association for a decade and his roles included: President Elect, President, Past President, Board member and Secretary, member of the Staff Relations Committee, the Provost’s Advisory Committee on Staff Compensation, UW Pension and Benefits Committee, the Policy 33 Review and Development Committee, UWSA Member Advisory Committee to mention but a few. He has also been the driving force behind UWSA’s efforts to bring a new UW-UWSA Memorandum of Understanding to life. I do not have the right words to express my personal, and the Board’s collective, appreciation for Mike’s contributions to UWSA. His rock-solid presence, kindness, generosity and collegiality made Mike – to use an old cliché – a simply invaluable member of our community who will be very much missed. On a personal note, I am consoled by the fact that I now count Mike as a friend and that our lunch-time chats will continue. Please join me in thanking Mike Herz for his long and dedicated service to the Staff Association.

It is also my honour to announce that the UWSA Board has appointed Eden Mekonen to fill this latest vacancy in our complement. Eden has expressed her interest in serving on the Board following the 2021 AGM when the Board solicited expressions of interest to fill the vacancies created by the introduction of our new by-law. As you may recall, the Board held a blind vote that welcomed Amanda Cook, Tracelyn Cornelius and Jason Greatrex as Board members; Eden was our runner-up. The appointment of Eden Mekonen received unanimous support of the Board at a Special Meeting on February 9, 2022 and is effective until the 2022 AGM. Eden brings a formidable voice to our Board as we continue our work to create a more diverse, equitable and just working environment at UW. We are grateful to Eden for accepting the appointment and are looking forward to working with her. Please join me in welcoming Eden Mekonen to the UWSA Board.

Finally, with the Board of Directors now back to its full complement and the new members fully onboarded, we were able to replace interim Officer appointments made immediately after the 2021 AGM. As of February 15, 2022, the following individuals serve in UWSA Officer positions as specified in the UWSA By-law:

  • Chair: Agata Antkiewicz,
  • Vice-Chair: Bill Baer,
  • Secretary: Courtney Bremer,
  • Treasurer: Jane Arnem.

I am honoured to have been appointed as Chair of the UWSA Board and am excited to support the Board as well as the UWSA Presidents and staff to further the goals and ambitions of the Staff Association.

Once more, my sincere thanks to Mike Herz for his service, Eden Mekonen for joining us, and to you all, UWSA members, for your continued support.

Your sincerely,

Agata Antkiewicz, MA
Associate Director, Strategic Planning and Administration, The Games Institute
Chair, Board of Directors, University of Waterloo Staff Association
Interim Co-Chair, UW Sexual Violence Prevention Task Force

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