I’m Cat, champion for union democracy, an energetic grass-roots organizer for T&I and Union Strong candidate for President

I am Cat Farman, a Senior Technologist in the Office of Technology and Innovation, where I lead software teams as a front-end developer. As a programmer, I’m a problem solver and a collaborative teammate.

As a union steward, I’ve proudly organized my colleagues to fight to protect our rights in the workplace.

As your chapter president, I’ll unite employees from DC and the field to hold management accountable

As your chapter president, I’ll unite employees from DC and the field to hold management accountable when they violate our rights and organize collective action to win on big issues like paid family leave and pay equity. I represent both home duty-stationed employees and DC employees as a steward, and I will make the short trip from where I live in Philly to DC at least every month as president so that I’m available to members in all regions and in DC.

My experience prepares me to serve

My work at T&I includes contributions to high-profile websites like the Consumer Complaint Database and Ask CFPB, with a focus on open-source software and government transparency.

As an experienced public speaker, I have used my platform as a programmer to represent CFPB’s innovative design work and to advocate for diversity and inclusion at national conferences including O’Reilly Open Source Con, the National Day of Civic Hacking and the Grace Hopper Celebration for Women in Computing.

As a union steward at our Chapter I have:

    • Partnered with our Chapter Leadership to score a victory for home duty stationed employees. We reversed management’s inaccurate contract interpretation so employees have more options for office furniture and can apply their reimbursement toward higher-quality furniture when it exceeds the $200 limit
    • Represented employees in disputes with Human Capital over salary inequities
      Led the fight for Union Strong candidate Stephanie Osan’s grievance regarding Paul Watkins and the Office of Innovation’s discriminatory policy proposals
    • Organized a tabling action to oppose homophobic hate groups and pushed our Chapter to file an institutional grievance when management illegally shut down our table
    • Organized weekly steward meetups to prepare for Mid-term bargaining to hold our bargaining team accountable to issues raised by employees
    • Increased T&I’s union representation and outreach, with regular office hours to meet with our membership
    • Successfully reversed the wave of mass resignations that came in the wake of the ill-advised pay for space swap agreed to by our current Chapter President, by encouraging them to re-join our union and fight to make it better with Union Strong Caucus

Moving forward

We have unresponsive leaders who are unwilling to stand up to management in a time of sustained attacks on federal employee unions. We need to stand up to Kraninger-Trump union-busting.

For mid-term bargaining, Chapter stewards are working hard to avoid repeating the mistakes of the pay for space swap—a bad deal, done in secret with no vote by the bargaining team or the bargaining unit. Hundreds of signatures on a petition opposing consolidation were never delivered to the Director by our sitting President, Gail Wisely.

When I tried to bring accountability and transparency to mid-term bargaining by organizing weekly stewards meetings with the bargaining team, Gail failed to show up. Instead, she kept a meeting with Kraninger’s Mission Achievement Award selection panel to help pick the winners. This is the same award that the chapter filed a grievance against because management violated our contract and kept most monetary awards for managers only! When given a choice between listening to members’ bargaining concerns and cozying up to management, Gail’s priorities are clear.

Make no mistake: the stakes are very high with mid-term bargaining. Director Kraninger is taking illegal orders from Trump—just like her predecessor Mulvaney—and wants to eliminate our union’s right to represent our members and enforce our contract on the job.

Also on the chopping block: the ability of federal employees to challenge unfair firings through grievance proceedings before a neutral arbitrator, the first line of defense for federal whistleblowers. Our union’s right to grieve unfair firings is what makes federal jobs so secure. We cannot afford to treat these negotiations as business as usual.

What I’m fighting for

I’m a problem solver, and I’ll fight to make our Union Strong Caucus platform a reality:

Represent all employees equally and democratically and unite DC and the field.

Union Strong Caucus will represent DC and regional employees equally, host open board meetings, and hold chapter meetings quarterly. We will appoint a Democracy Committee to enact common-sense bylaws so every member has a vote, and we will hold the national union accountable to the concerns of our hard-working dues-paying members. We’ll unite field examiners and DC employees to work together in the union, just like we are in Union Strong Caucus, to understand each others’ unique challenges, plus the issues we all share.

Open, transparent leadership.

We will serve as accountable, responsive leaders by making our finances transparent. We will share our calendars so that our time spent working on behalf of the union is visible and accountable to the members.

Stand up to management.

We need to take back our power, and stop accepting and celebrating bad deals. We’ll host open negotiations so our chapter members can observe management at the bargaining table. And we’ll take collective action to show management our strength and win a better workplace for us all.

Let’s fight for a stronger union. Vote #UnionStrong slate for Chapter 335! Join our caucus and add your name to our supporters’ list.