AFL-CIO Leader Appointed to Labor Seat on Board of Education- Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
For Immediate Release
Friday, March 26, 2004
Contact:Heidi B. Perlman 781-338-3106 or Kimberly Beck 781-338-3105

AFL-CIO Leader Appointed to Labor Seat on Board of Education

Malden - Governor Mitt Romney has appointed AFL-CIO Education and Training Director Harneen Chernow the newest member of the Massachusetts Board of Education.

Chernow fills the labor seat vacated last year by Bill Irwin, who left after 13 years on the Board. She will attend her first meeting on Tuesday, March 30.

“Harneen brings to the board deep experience in workforce development and adult education,” said Board of Education Chairman Jim Peyser. “Her expertise will be invaluable as we continue our efforts to improve the academic and workplace skills of students throughout the Commonwealth in both our K-12 and adult education systems."

A labor activist for more than two decades, Chernow said she is eager to represent the state’s working families during her time on the Board.

“I have seen again and again that education is one of the clearest paths to success, solid employment and a good quality of life,” she said. “I look forward to serving not only the people who use our schools, but the teachers, principals and others who work each day to make our public schools a world class system. Being asked to serve as one of the shapers of education policy in the Commonwealth is a terrific opportunity.”

Chernow is the key policy analyst for the state’s AFL-CIO, and advocates for labor on workforce development initiatives. She is responsible for training labor representatives serving on Workforce Investment Boards and works with local union leadership to ensure their members participate in skills training and adult education opportunities.

Prior to joining the AFL-CIO in 1998, she led the SEIU Worker Education Program, training more than 2,500 workers.

A Jamaica Plain resident, Chernow received her BA in political science and Chinese studies from Wellesley College in 1984, and her MA in political science from the University of California at Berkeley in 1986.

Seven of the eight members on the Board of Education are gubernatorial appointees. The student member is elected annually by the State Student Advisory Council. The Board’s final seat, vacated by Charles Baker earlier this year, still remains to be filled.

For more information on the Board of Education, look online at

Last Updated: March 26, 2004

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