President's Corner
Craig Schadewald

Change That Will Pay Dividends


     Hello, Brothers and Sisters. I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season and is doing well.

     During the second week in November, I and other State Chairs (Presidents) traveled to NALC Headquarters for a legislative and political briefing and meetings with our Government Affairs Department, National President Rolando and other National officers. Many topics were discussed such as, but not limited to: provisions considered in legislation that directly attack the benefits and livelihoods of all federal employees (including active and retired letter carriers), the role and status of State Associations, current and possible proposed legislation, increasing legislative and political activity amongst our members (both long time and new members) and mapping out a route to achieve our goals.

     Of course, each State Association is geographically and demographically different, so each State Chair also met individually to discuss the road ahead.

     Earlier in 2017, NALC was hopeful there was a chance for the much needed postal reform bills to reach the floors of Congress during 2017. At the time of this writing, it doesn’t look like that will happen. There’s a lot of activity on Capitol Hill regarding the government debt ceiling, the 2018 federal budget and tax reform, all taking precedent over postal reform. However, we cannot let our guard down. Those of you, who are not legislatively tuned in, need to be. Your job and financial well-being are at stake. When there’s talk about reducing the federal budget and reducing taxes, Congress will need to find ways to replace the money from these cuts and all too many times they look at federal employee benefits.

    Here are some of the budget proposals that were approved by the House side of Congress: let’s take a look.

     Raising federal employee pension contributions, resulting in a $3,600 per year take-home pay cut for active letter carriers; eliminating COLA’s for FERS retirees; reducing COLA’s for CSRS annuitants; reducing pension benefits for new retirees by basing annuities on high-5 years versus the current high-3 years; eliminating the FERS annuity supplement; slashing the interest rate in the TSP G Fund, costing active and retired postal employees $32 billion over 10 years, and cutting $46 billion in vaguely defined cuts to the USPS, most likely eliminating Saturday delivery and reducing door delivery.

     Did I get your attention? Thankfully, these were not included in the Senate version of the budget and the House, by a 216-212 vote, agreed to the Senate version, but that doesn’t mean proposals like these are gone for good. The approval of the budget clears the way for tax reform cuts and like I said early, the money will need to come from somewhere.

     Active and retired letter carriers, are you okay with your member of Congress slashing your pay and benefits? How dark will it need to get before you see the light and understand you cannot sit by and do nothing in the legislative and political arena? We need to build relationships with all members of Congress, without regard to their party affiliation. If you don’t ring their bell, they won’t know you’re there or that you care how they vote. You need to let them know, who you are and how the decisions they make will affect you, your family or our postal customers. Calling members of Congress is easy and only takes a few minutes.

     If you need help with what to say, feel free to contact your LCCL or myself, our contact info is in this publication and on our website:

President's Corner
Craig Schadewald

Moving Forward

     The 107th Convention of our NC State Association of Letter Carriers could quite possibly be one for the record books. We had possibly our highest number of delegates in attendance; nearly 30 proposed by-laws amendments (very likely the most ever); and one officer election that was decided, possibly by the closest margin in our history. This was by far the busiest state convention I ever attended. Thank you to all the delegates and committee members for your hard work and voices on the pivotal issues that were debated and voted upon.
     I am honored to have been elected as your State President. Thank you to those delegates who voted for me. I promise to lead our association with sincere actions and upmost professionalism. To my opponent and his supporters, I will strive to earn your confidence by listening to your concerns and leading with a strong work ethic. Congratulations to our newly elected and re-elected members of the Executive Board. I look forward to working with all of you and with our appointed Letter Carrier Congressional Liaisons (LCCL). Thank you to our Past President Eddie Davidson for his efforts and service to our State Association. I look forward to working with Eddie in his new role as NALC Legislative Political Organizer. Also, thank you to our out-going Executive Board members: Danny Straub, John Cowan, Reggie Gentle and Cassandra Scott. Thank you for
your commitment and service to our association. It has been a pleasure serving with all of you. 
     I’d like to clarify some changes that will occur following their passage by the delegates at the convention: Our State Association will no longer be affiliated with the NC State AFL-CIO. This was not an easy decision. Most of our delegates were in agreement that the NC State AFL-CIO does good work for working people (both union and non-union) and we have built relationships with other unions, but our own state association’s political program needs the money it was spending on affiliation with the NC State AFL-CIO, over $13,000 per year in dues and another nearly $4K sending delegates to meetings and conventions.
     These funds will allow our Letter Carrier Congressional Liaison’s (LCCL) to be reimbursed for expenses and time spent communicating our message through meetings and developing relationships with their members of Congress, attending trainings and communicating with our letter carrier members. We need to spread our message and issues to all members of Congress, no matter what side of the aisle they are on and it needs to start here at home with their LCCL.
     The delegates also passed a Resolution where our executive board encouraged all Branches to individually affiliate (by Branch) with the NC State AFL-CIO because of the good work they do. I know a number of Branches (including my own) have already taken this up at their meetings and have voted to affiliate. I encourage every branch to affiliate, whether on full or partial active membership.
     Another Resolution approved by delegates will eliminate the Fall (Oct) training seminar only in the odd numbered years but will add a training day on the Thursday prior to our NC State convention. With this change we will still get the same number of contractual training days.
     Prior to this Resolution approval, during the odd numbered years there was a Spring (March) NC training seminar, our NC State convention (June), a National Rap session, a Regional Rap session (July or Aug) and a Fall (Oct) NC training seminar. It was suggested by several Branches’ this was getting costly. However, the Executive Board, Branch leaders and members all agree contractual training is important, so the Executive Board submitted a Resolution stating the above. This will save Branch’s money on travel and hotel expenses, while maintaining the same number of contractual training days each year. This will begin in the year 2019.
     Plus, as always, if a Branch would like additional contractual training, you should contact Region 9 National Business Agent (NBA), Kenny Gibbs or our NC State Association, Director of Education, Frank Vega. Our Director of Education may provide training by the direction of the NBA.
     So moving forward, you need to stay informed and ready to act. The USPS is the center of a $1.3 trillion dollar national mailing industry that employees 7 million Americans in the private sector. It is truly “too big to fail.” Not to mention very important to us letter carriers and our families.    
     There always seems to be some type of proposed legislation that can affect letter carriers, postal and federal employees and the mailing industry. If left to postal management and some in congress; that’s exactly what may happen. We need to be informed and proactive. Download the NALC Member app to your smartphone, contribute to our NALC Political  Action Fund- “Letter Carrier Political Fund” and check our websites often ( and and join our NC Letter Carrier and NALC social media sites on Facebook and Twitter. Richard Thayer, our Editor of our NC Letter Carrier publication and director of our NC Letter Carrier social media accounts does a fantastic job of updating these sites frequently, sometimes several times a day! 
     As always, I remain dedicated to our members of this State Association and the NALC. With your action and support we can move our legislative and political program to the next level. I hope our Executive Board and our LCCL’s can count on your support! We are much stronger together.

President's Corner
Craig Schadewald
Thank You For Allowing Me To Serve As Your Vice President
     During this past 2-year term, I’ve chaired all meetings of the Executive Board and attended all training sessions. I attended the Region 9 Rap session in Fort Lauderdale and the National Convention in Los Angeles. I’ve submitted quarterly articles for our State Association publication, The North Carolina Letter Carrier. I served as a delegate to the NC State AFL-CIO Convention. I worked as a NALC release during the Labor 2016 campaign as a zone lead coordinating volunteers and phone bank facilities, making phone calls and door knock canvassing in support of our candidates.

     I’ve had the opportunity to attend local branch meetings, CLC meetings, congressional meetings, candidate meet/greets and screenings, all in an effort to educate NALC members, other unions , political candidates and my own congressman about issues important to letter carriers, federal employees and working families.

     Our State Association’s primary role is legislation and politics. All State Associations have a NALC constitutional responsibility to use our resources to advance NALCs legislative and political agenda. This makes sense given that Congress has the ultimate say regarding the US Postal Service, as well as our employee healthcare, retirement and our collective bargaining rights.

     There are only a small number of NALC members at headquarters in comparison to the numbers within our state associations. We here in NC have the voice and power. Our state association must work to mobilize our members within the state to become legislatively and politically active, to get our message heard.


     Our state Congressional District Liaisons (CDLs) and Letter Carrier Congressional Liaisons (LCCLs) require training and resources to develop a relationship with his or her member of Congress and help fellow letter carriers communicate with them.

     During this convention not only did delegates elect officers to lead and move our state forward for the next two years, but delegates also had the opportunity to discuss, debate and vote on proposed resolutions and bylaws amendments that will shape our State Association legislative and political program. This program will allow CDLs and LCCLs to provide NC Letter Carriers with the tools and education to effectively communicate our message with their representative in the House of Representatives.    
     I remain committed and dedicated to our members of this State Association. I look forward to working with our members to advance our Association’s legislative and political movement to the next level. I hope I can count on your support!
     On a personal note, thank you to my awesome wife Darilyn, and my terrific sons Matt and Zach for their continued support of our union causes.

     Thanks to NALC Branch 545 for their hard work and hospitality while hosting our convention.

     Thank you, Brothers and Sisters, for without your involvement and support, where would our union be? And thank you for allowing me to serve as your Vice President. It has been an honor and a privilege.