Anne Wass elected MTA president

Delegates at the 161st Annual Meeting of the MTA have elected new leadership.

Anne Wass, vice president of the Massachusetts Teachers Association, was elected president. She has spent much of her life in public education and has served in many union leadership positions. She is currently on leave from her job as a sixth-grade teacher in Hanover, Mass., where she has taught for 31 years. She has served on the MTA Board of Directors and state Executive Committee and has been president of her local association in Hanover at two different times. For many years, Wass has chaired the training program for new local presidents at the MTA Summer Conference in Williamstown. More than 100 local presidents have benefited from attending these sessions.

Wass has won several awards honoring her abilities as a teacher. These include the Plymouth County Education Association's Honor Award and the PCEA's Loretta Quinlan Award.

Paul Toner was elected vice president. He is on leave from his position as a middle school social studies teacher in Cambridge, and is president of the Cambridge Teachers Association. The CTA represents 1,100 teachers, administrators, paraprofessionals and substitutes. Toner has served in many roles at the CTA, including chairing the negotiations team for 12 consecutive bargaining agreements and resolving more than 200 backlogged grievances.

Toner has a B.A. from Boston University, a master's of education from UMass/Boston, and a law degree from Suffolk University Law School. At the CTA and through various committees of the MTA, Toner has focused on professional issues as well as issues related to salary, benefits and working conditions, including hosting forums on such issues as "Closing the Achievement Gap," and working with the MTA to help all Cambridge paraprofessionals meet ESEA standards to become "highly qualified."

Wass and Toner will take office in July.