2018 Guild Service Award Winners


The Washington-Baltimore News Guild Local 32035 is pleased to announce the 2018 Guild Service Award winners.

The Guild Service Awards are as follows: Dan de Souza Memorial Award for Member of the Year; Nadine Grinder Memorial Award for Shop Steward of the Year; Unit Officer of the Year; Organizer of the Year; Bargaining Unit of the Year; Herb Block Award for Community Service and the Connie Knox Memorial Award for Outstanding Service to the Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild.

Front Page Awards and Guild Service Awards for both years will be formally presented to the winners at a special ceremony later this year.

Guild Service Awards


Dan De Souza Member of the Year– Katie MettlerThe Washington Post, for spearheading the social media campaign against the Post during a very difficult round of contract negotiations.

(Yvette De La Cruz, AFL-CIO 2017; Chris Stergalas, Working American 2016; Amanda Erikson, Jenny Rodgers and Ann Tran, The Washington Post 2015; Joel Achenbach, Post 2014; Bruce Kaufman, BNA 2013; Laura Francis, BNA 2012; Freddy Kunkle & Darlene Meyer, Post 2011)

Nadine Grinder Shop Steward of the Year– Dan Gabor, AFL-CIO, for dealing with several complicated issues and resolving difficult grievances for members. (co-winner)

Nadine Grinder Shop Steward of the Year– Daren Neuben, Bloomberg Bureau of National Affairs, for handling many cases with alacrity and professionalism. (co-winner)

(Steve Cook, BBNA 2017; Celeste Drake AFL-CIO 2016; Dina Kastner and Bekki Ow-Arhus, National Association of Social Workers 2015; David Wright, Sun 2014; Lori Richards, UFCW 2013; Dawan Jones, NASW 2012 and Dawan Jones, NASW 2011)

Unit Officer of the Year– Laura Francis, Bloomberg Bureau of National Affairs, for preparing and leading the unit membership through a very creative round of bargaining.    

(Mikhail Romanov, UFCW 2017; Edward Fortney, SEIU 500 2016; Laura Francis, Blomberg-BNA 2015; Freddy Kunkle & Stephen Rocky Richardson, Post 2014; Stephen Rocky Richardson & Nikita Steward, Post 2013; Evan Yeats, UFCW 2012 and Byron Charlton, AFL-CIO 2011)

Organizer of the YearDanielle Ohl, Cody Boteler & Libby Solomon, Chesapeake Unit, for helping organize the Chesapeake Unit (Annapolis Capital-Gazette, Carroll County Times, Baltimore Sun Media Group and Sound Off) into WBNG. (co-winners)

Organizer of the YearBrock Vergakis, Tidewater Unit, for helping organize the Tidewater Unit (The Virginian-Pilot and Daily Press) into TNG and affiliating with WBNG. (co-winner)

(Julie Zauzmer, Post 2017; Elianne Farhar, Center for Popular Democracy 2016; Benjamin Soloway, Foreign Policy 2015; Vladslav Kachka, BNA 2014; Tim Smith, Post 2014; Mo-Yain Tham, RAINN 2013; Chase Brandau, WA 2012 and James Crudup, Post 2011)

Herb Block Community Service– Peter Brusoe, Bloomberg BNA, for his perpetual volunteering spirit with WBNG and other meaningful likeminded progressive organizations.

(None 2017; Elise Bryant At-Large, Lee Anderson AFL-CIO, Jazmin Gargoum, At-Large, and Ashley See, APWU 2016; Jeremy Sprinkle, NC State AFL-CIO 2015; Elise Bryant, At-Large 2014; No winner 2013; Matt Losak, At-Large 2012 and Gwen Holmes, BNA 2011)

Darlene Meyer Customer Service/Accounts Award– Jacqueline Roane-Griffin, The Baltimore Sun, consummate professional and continually fights for the rights of Commission Sales Representatives.

(Jacqueline Roane-Griffin, Sun 2017; Pat Jacobs, The Washington Post 2016; Naazima Ali, Working America 2015; David DeJesus, Post 2014; Monique Carr, Sun 2013; Sheila Washington-Cole, Sun 2012 and Darlene Meyer, Post 2011)

Connie Knox Memorial Award Lifetime Achievement– Mark PattisonCatholic News Service, for his longtime WBNG service as ERC chair, president, treasurer, secretary, executive council member and now CNS unit chair. 

(Robert Lever, Agence France-Presse 2017; Mary Esslinger, Catholic News Service 2016; Karen Coale, American Nurses Association 2015; Mark Gruenberg, At-Large 2014; Ken May, BNA 2013; Bill Salganik, Sun & Reza Namdar, BNA 2012; Connie Knox, Sun 2011)

Unit of the Year– M+R, for meritorious commitment through the organizing/contract campaign and forcing management to replace their anti-union law firm during bargaining.

(AFL-CIO 2017; CPD 2016; BBNA 2015; WA 2014; UFCW 2013; BNA 2012 and none 2011)


The Member of the Year Award was first presented in 1952 in memory of Dan de Souza, the first president of the Washington Newspaper Guild.  Dan de Souza, a founding member of the local, was killed in a December 1934 automobile accident in Hyattsville, MD.  At the time of the accident, he and a Guild colleague were in route to Newark, NJ, to deliver a holiday load of food and toys for the children of Guild strikers there.  The Newark work stoppage was The Newspaper Guild’s first strike.  The award honors de Souza’s memory and says he died, “that the Guild might live.”

The Nadine Grinder Memorial Award for shop steward of the year honors the tenacious steward-activist at the Washington Post. Grinder died of cancer in the mid-1960s. The award was first issued in 1967.

Unit Chair of the Year Award honors outstanding leadership service within a unit.

Organizer of the Year Award was established to honor the Guild member who organizes members into action.

The Herbert Block (Herblock) Community Service Award was established in 2003 to honor members who make outstanding contributions to the labor community and the community at large.  The award commemorates the life and service of the Pulitzer-winning Washington Post editorial cartoonist, who was a staunch guild supporter. In 1933, Block joined the very first local within The Newspaper Guild — a shop in Cleveland — before he came to work for The Post.  When he died in 2001, Block left $100,000 to WBNG and The Newspaper Guild.

Customer Service Professional of the Year Award for outstanding customer service.  This was renamed in honor of the late J. Darlene Meyer of the Washington Post.  The WBNG Vice President was the paper’s specialist in legal advertising and a veteran leader of WBNG’s unit at the paper.  Meyer died in January 2012.

Connie Knox Memorial Award for long and distinguished service to the Washington-Baltimore News Guild.  Ms. Knox, who died July 17, 2011 just months after her retirement from The Baltimore Sun and as International Chair of The Newspaper Guild-CWA, the Washington local’s parent union.  Knox, a longtime copy editor at the Sun, served for over ten years as WBNG’s president and as a TNG-CWA official.  

Guild Unit of the Year Award is the unit the most successfully meets all the “Build the Guild” program goals and/or set the bar for being an outstanding unit.