Barbara Petersen Oral History Interview (Two Parts)


Barbara Petersen Oral History Interview (Two Parts)

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Barbara Petersen shares her work experience as a sewer at Levi Strauss in Albuquerque in the 1970s where she was active in a union organizing drive. Petersen talks about her developing political and social and economic justice consciousness around issues of civil rights, workers’ rights, and teachers’ rights. After leaving Levi Strauss, she worked in the Albuquerque Public Schools (APS) in kindergarten as an EA for 2 years and a teacher for 33 years. As a member of AFT, Petersen learned the “bigger picture” of union membership that included teacher voice, political action centered on school funding, standardized testing, tests score data issues, and workers’ pay and benefits. Petersen has been a member of the CLC since 1978 where she appreciates the diversity of union members with whom she shares solidarity. She is currently an APS School Board member.

This interview has two parts. Please click here to view part 2 of Barbara Petersen's interview in a new window.

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American Federation of Teachers (AFT); Chicago Teacher's Union; National Education Association (NEA); New Mexico Public Employee Bargaining Act (PEBA); Social justice; Economic justice; Education New Mexico; Teaching New Mexico; Labor unions United States History


Labor History


University of New Mexico


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Barbara Petersen Oral History Interview (Two Parts)