Reed has held the post — the top leadership slot at the local — for 24 years, or eight three-year terms. Local 399 reps over 4,500 drivers, location managers, animal wranglers and casting directors, mostly in the Los Angeles area.
Reed dismissed Dayan on Friday from the business agent post, which he had held since 2000, after being informed that Dayan intended to challenge him in the upcoming election. Dayan told Variety he is heading a “399 Members First” slate because Reed has fallen short in key areas such as contract negotiations, preventing runaway production, organizing, transparency and adjusting to changing circumstances.
In a mailer, Dayan portrayed Reed as being out of touch with the members.
“We’ve all seen our industry change and we will continue to face new challenges in the years ahead so we can no longer rely on ‘old school’ tactics,” Dayan said. “our local does not belong to any one person or family. For me, it’s always been about taking care of our members and I believe the time has come for new leadership with fresh innovative ideas that move us forward together.”
Reed won the 2010 election with 81% of of the 1,961 ballots cast over challenger Mitch Masoner, who had criticized Reed for not getting a larger minimum salary increases than 2%. That’s the same increase in the current master contract, which expires in 2015.
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Randy Peterson, who was elected in 2010 as VP as part of Reed’s slate, has already endorsed Dayan for the upcoming election. Ballots for that contest will go out in October.
Starting in 2002, Dayan spearheaded Local 399’s successful three-year campaign to organize about 500 casting directors and associates in Los Angeles and New York. He’s also currently vice chairman of the California Film Commission.
Dayan has launched a website at http://www.399membersfirst.com