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Eight elected to WGA West board

Members include incumbents Fugate, Goodman, Kiernan

Members of the Writers Guild of America West have elected eight candidates — including three incumbents — for two-year slots on its board of directors.

The incumbents include Katherine Fugate (with 840 votes), David A. Goodman (651) and Kathy Kiernan (585). Also elected were Chip Johannessen — the top vote-getter with 870 votes — along with Michael Oates Palmer (790), John Aboud (723), Scott Alexander (684) and Marjorie David (650).

Aboud was well known as a strike captain during the 2007-08 WGA strike. Johannessen is a former board member.

Candidates were announced in July, leading to a cordial campaign without attacks between candidates. Key issues raised included enforcement of the Minimum Basic Agreement, digital issues that were at the forefront of the strike and prepping for the next round of negotiations with the congloms.

“The foundation of a responsive guild is vigorous MBA enforcement,” Aboud said in his candidate statement. “There is no better use of our resources. Tough times for writers have emboldened the companies to disregard the MBA. We feel pressure to let it slide. And we don’t have to.”

David Shore, who was voted on to the board in the 2010 election, was the leader of the remaining candidates, with 563 votes, or 23 short of being elected. Other candidates were Alexander Cary, Terrence Coli, Meg LaFauve, Jordan Mechner, Eric Small and Barbara Turner.

In last year’s election, members moved toward moderation by electing Christopher Keyser to a two-year term as president by a three-to-two margin over former president Patric Verrone.

Participation rate was about 15%, in line with the usual figure in non-presidential elections. The WGA West has about 8,000 members.

Members of the Writers Guild of America East also elected 10 candidates for its council seats, including six incumbents.

The winners of the seven open freelance seats are: John Auerbach, Walter Bernstein, Gina Gianfriddo, Terry George, Jenny Lumet, Lara Shapiro and Richard Vetere. Auerbach, Bernstein, Gionfriddo and George are incumbents.

All three candidates up for the three open staff seats were voted in: Arthur Daley, Patrick Mason and Ted Schreiber. Daley and Schreiber are incuments.

The WGA West and WGA East jointly negotiate the guild’s master contract, which expires on May 1, 2014.

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