Strengthen your union and make a difference.

Recruitment is an on-going process.
We encourage active participation, teamwork,
regional/local union meetings, and your ideas
and suggestions on ways to build and
strengthen NWSEO even more!

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Updated 12/16/2020

NWSEO Membership Drive

NWSEO Membership Drive Extended to December 15, 2020

(November 30, 2020) Due to the requests of many members, NWSEO has extended the NWSEO Membership Drive “Turkey Throwdown,” through Tuesday, December 15th.  November has been an incredibly busy time for so many in different areas of the country, not only due to COVID-19 concerns but also because of the Presidential election and the holiday season. “This recruitment drive has been much more about outreach, staying connected, and checking in on our colleagues during this pandemic.  We should continue to reach out to our members and show that we care,” said NWSEO Membership Director Christy Fox.

The current NWSEO Membership is 1,597.   Read more in NWSEO News & Archives.

Membership Form 1187

Please contact NWSEO Membership Director Christy Fox at with any questions on completing the Form 1187, enrollment incentives, or membership rewards. You have a Membership Services team ready to assist you in your recruitment efforts.

Member Enrollment Incentives & Rewards

NWSEO offers a “New Hire Enrollment Incentive” through December 31, 2022.  Any newly hired employee (NWS, NESDIS, Aircraft Operations Center (AOC), AOML, NAG new hires) who joins NWSEO by Form 1187 within nine months of their start date, or during a New Employee course or its equivalent, will receive a $300 rebate.  The $300 rebate check will be mailed to the employee’s home within 7 business days.

Enrollment Incentives for other new members and recruiters will also be continued through December 31, 2022:  Any NWSEO member who recruits a fellow non-member (who is not eligible for the New Hire Enrollment Incentive) to join NWSEO by Form 1187, will receive a NWSEO T-shirt and a $50 gift card (of their choice).  The New Member will receive a $100 cash rebate mailed to his/her home within 7 business days and a $50 gift card (of their choice).

NWSEO Recruitment Travel Incentive.  JULY 31 is the deadline.  Any NWSEO member who recruits two or more new members to join NWSEO using the 1187 form for payroll deduction (not by credit card) from August 1, 2019 to July 31, 2021, NWSEO will provide reasonable airfare*, 3 nights lodging, and approved group meals for the 2021 NWSEO National Convention.

Member Dues Details to share with prospects

Membership Dues Information

The current dues for payroll deduction are only 1% of your salary to a maximum per pay period amount of $24.30.  If for example, an employee makes $30,000 per year, their dues are only $300 a year.  With the NWSEO enrollment incentive ($300 rebate for new hires!) your membership is free for the first year.  Once you submit your membership form, you would receive your rebate check at your home address within 7 business days.  

To join NWSEO, please complete the attached Standard Form 1187 (no social security number necessary) for payroll deduction and return it to or fax to NWSEO, 202-600-2145.

Direct any further questions to NWSEO Membership Director Christy Fox at

NWSEO Recruitment Team Leaders

Your NWSEO Recruitment Team Leaders

Alaska Region             Mike Ottenweller, AR Chair and David Kramer, AR Vice Chair

Central Region           Jim Lee, CR Chair

Eastern Region           Brandon Dunstan, ER Chair and Douglas Anderson, Steward

Southern Region        Jason Wright, Steward

Western and Pacific Regions         Karleisa Rogacheski, Vice Steward and Robbie Munroe, Member

HQ and NCEP Regions           Ashley Kells, HQ Regional Vice Chair

NESDIS                                    Hugh Sharkey, Regional Chair

NOAA Attorneys Guild          Mitch MacDonald, Regional Chair and Lauren Smoker, Regional Vice Chair

AOC                                         Todd Richards, Steward

AOML                                      Jay Harris, Steward

Positive Approaches to Recruiting

Reasons why employees might not want to support the work of NWSEO.

Over the past five years, the NWSEO Membership services and support have collected reasons given from members, why they don’t choose to support the work of NWSEO.  Membership support does increase though, when the work being done by NWSEO directly impacts the employee in their pay, work, shifts, maintaining work/life balance, etc.  We can learn from this resource and grow our union by encouraging members to share their positive experiences and stories of the work and impact of NWSEO with their colleagues. Member input is appreciated.

 Negatives                                                      Positives


“It’s too expensive” or “I can’t afford it.”

“We find money for the things that are important.” – NWSEO Executive Vice President, JoAnn Becker

Given everything NWSEO does to protect our jobs, working environment/conditions, and financial livelihood, the union dues are a very small price to pay.

NWSEO membership is an investment in your future!

The Health Club Reimbursement rebate of up to $300 helps to defray much of the cost.

Enrollment incentives can further defray the costs, making it incredibly inexpensive to try membership for a year!

POLITICAL/PHILOSOPHICAL: they just don’t like unions in general or NWSEO in particular.

·       Could be disapproval of NWSEO’s approach to LMR or perceived NWSEO “attitude” or leadership, communication style, etc.

·       Could also be a negative perception from extremely limited information they have heard about NWSEO.

If it is a strong, emotional/political reaction, it may be best to back off.

If their objection is to NWSEO in general, what are the specific reasons? Are these reasons accurate, or a misperception/ misunderstanding?

The recent change in NWSEO leadership may provide an opportunity to turn them around.

Offer that your regional chair would be happy to talk with them about their concerns/objections.


“I don’t like the way the union is run in my office.”

Then put some skin in the game and make a difference - even run for steward yourself!

Even if you don’t want to run for steward, membership will get you influence to try to change things.

When you become an active NWSEO member or become NWSEO steward, you get to display leadership skills, work directly face to face with management, networking which can lead to promotions.  

You can join us to support what NWSEO is doing regionally/nationally, protecting your job and working conditions, even if you disagree with the local steward/ philosophy.

GENERAL DISINTEREST or lack of knowledge

“I don’t know (or care about) what NWSEO does.”

Provide them hard-hitting bullet points.

·       We protect the jobs, pay, and working conditions of NWS employees - including you!

·       We engage in collective bargaining with management and enforce the resulting CBA.

·       We provide you with a voice and a chance to influence changes that will affect the future of your career.

·       We work with management to facilitate positive change within the agency, bringing ideas from field employees into reality.

·       We provide our members with opportunities for personal growth, professional advancement, and exposure within the agency.


“I already get the benefits and protections of NWSEO as a bargaining unit employee, so why should I pay dues to become a member?”

There are many benefits available to members that are not available to non-members!

·       Members, especially those who take an active role and/or run for office, have an excellent opportunity to develop their leadership skills and increase their role within the office and the agency.

·       Membership gives you a voice and input into changes at the local, regional, and national levels that will affect your career.

·       Only members can vote in NWSEO officer elections and on schedule rotation changes or CBA ratification.

·       Only members can serve on local, regional, and national teams.

·       Membership grants access to information directly to and from NWSEO leadership and other members (via newsletters and emails, the Facebook group, etc.)


They think NWSEO is only for when you need help: “I have a great manager, so we don’t need NWSEO here.”

Share the “opportunities-based” side of NWSEO benefits (see #5).

In offices with good LMR, the opportunity for NWSEO members to have their ideas heard and affect positive change is even greater!

Getting along with management is the best reason to join NWSEO, in the sense that in those environments you can really get things done.

Letters You Can Use for Recruitment

SAMPLE LETTER - (to welcome a new hire to your office)

Welcome to our office, and to NWS!

 ______, it was wonderful to talk with you about my experiences and about NWSEO in general. ______, if you are interested in discussing NWSEO membership with me, I am available at any time.

Personalize it - I have personally benefited from having NWSEO stand up for me to resolve unfair labor practices and support the organization. Without NWSEO's assistance, I would not be employed as the OPL, nor have received the temp promotions I was denied for 3 out of the 5 years it took to receive my promotion and fill the vacant OPL position.

What does NWSEO do? - NWSEO is the only advocate for us and continues to make a difference every day. Without representation, our Agency would be very different and our rights as employees would not be preserved, as well as many of our jobs. Your opportunities in our office are due in many ways to NWSEO's efforts lobbying in Washington DC. Without NWSEO efforts and pressure, NWSHQ would not be beginning to fill positions that have been vacant for several years in some cases.

Explain benefits of NWSEO - I forgot to mention to _____ the $300 Health Club Reimbursement program NWSEO negotiated for us. That is available to you every year whether you are a member or not. If you do join NWSEO within 9 months of hire by payroll deduction, you will receive a $300 rebate. For the first year alone, that's $600 in savings. 

I'm available to you at any time if you have any questions or need assistance. Just call me on my cell at ________ or email me here or at _______________.

Explain how to complete the Form 1187 and answer any questions - Attached is more information, and the current Form 1187. Let me know if you need help completing it if you decide to join and return it to me.

Best regards,


Why did you join NWSEO?


"I enjoyed being active in my work with NWSEO.  I had many opportunities to strengthen the membership and recruited many Student Career Experience Program (SCEP) students and interns over many years.  I also helped to organize AOML, and I participated in the NWS Diversity Council and the Health and Safety team that secured the Health & Wellness benefits for NWS employees."

— Robert Ebaugh, Lifetime Member


"It is especially in hard times like the Federal Government shutdown, and COVID-19, that I am extremely thankful to have a voice through the NWSEO."

— Lisa Schmit, NWSEO Steward NWS Twin Cities, MN


"NWSEO serves many purposes, but the one that made me join: Many people are intimidated by managers and are reluctant to give or get direct feedback from them. NWSEO (especially on the local level) provides any bargaining unit employee with a real voice without fear of reprisal. It is so beneficial to actually have this avenue of input instead of someone just having to simply put up with whatever working conditions/ environments. Luckily, so far in my NWS career, I have worked with mostly good managers... but prior to NWS I worked for a couple of terrible ones which makes me appreciate the role of NWSEO even more."

— Mark Pellerito, NWSEO Steward Binghamton, NY