Julie Kushner will bring four decades of experience and passion shaped through activism with her into Connecticut’s state senate. From her first organizing wins among secretaries at Columbia University (where they won a higher minimum wage, pay equity, and protections against sexual harassment) to her recent experiences advocating for UAW members in Puerto Rico after the 2017 hurricanes, Julie’s tenacity and dedication bring people together to achieve real change.
Julie and her husband Larry have lived in Danbury since 1993. They appreciated raising their three children, Ole, Raychel, and Cara, through Danbury’s culturally diverse public schools. They’ve enjoyed the nearby parks in Bethel, Sherman, and New Fairfield. They are avid hikers, appreciating the beauty of the many trails in all of these towns and surrounding Candlewood Lake. Two of their grown children and their four grandchildren live in Vernon, Connecticut, and their youngest lives and works in New York City.
After her appointment as education director for UAW Region 9A in the early 90s, Julie ran successful organizing campaigns among Stamford municipal employees, child care teachers, taxi drivers, adjunct professors/researchers/teaching assistants at many colleges, and the dealers at Foxwoods Casino. She was appointed Assistant Director of the region in 2006 and four years later was elected as the Regional Director – a position she has held for the last eight years. Julie is the first woman elected director of Region 9A and only the second woman elected director of any region in the more than 80-year history of the UAW.
Julie’s activism extends far beyond the labor movement. She has a long history of political involvement in the region. She’s currently an active member of the Danbury Democratic Town Committee and has served as a delegate or alternate delegate to every Democratic National Convention since 1996. She’s the former co-chair of the Connecticut Working Families Party, as well as a member of the Coalition of Labor Union Women, a member of the Labor Council for Latin American Advancement, and a lifetime member of the NAACP.