Jennifer Beals is running for a SAG-AFTRA national board seat as a member of presidential candidate Matthew Modine’s progressive Membership First slate.

Beals is best known for starring as Bette Porter on the Showtime series “The L Word” and for her lead role as Alex Owens in the 1983 hit “Flashdance.” She’s starred in the series “The Chicago Code,” “Proof” and “Taken.” Her film credits include “Devil in a Blue Dress,” “The Grudge 2” and “The Book of Eli.”

Election ballots will be mailed to dues-current members on July 29 and will be tabulated on August 28. SAG-AFTRA represents about 160,000 performers. Turnout is usually between 20% and 30%.

Beals stressed concerns about safety in her candidacy statement, released Friday.

“I’ve been privileged to work in this profession for over 40 years,” said said. “During that time I’ve witnessed the decline of securities provided by our union. I took for granted safety on sets, health and pension, residuals, twelve-hour turnarounds. Witnessing them now being whittled away has made me take notice not only out of concern for our present well-being but for the well-being of generations of members to come.”

Beals also said that she’s concerned about the SAG pension fund being underfunded and residuals being stripped from our contracts.

“Our beloved union is off course and I would like to offer whatever experience I have gained in the business to help inform a meaningful course correction,” she added. “I believe Matthew Modine, because of his knowledge, experience and dedication to transparency, is the right leader to make the changes we so badly need.”
Modine and current secretary-treasurer Jane Austin are challenging Gabrielle Carteris, who has been president since 2016. Carteris is heading the ticket Unite for Strength and United Screen Actors Nationwide — which have been the ruling factions at the union for the past decade with an emphasis on pragmatic policies.
“The Walking Dead” star Michael Cudlitz, “Riverdale” star Marisol Nichols and Patrick Fabian of “Better Call Saul” are among the notable actors seeking SAG-AFTRA national board seats as allies of Carteris. UFS has announced Camryn Manheim is running for secretary-treasurer while Jodi Long is seeking the post as Modine’s running mate.

Membership First has not yet announced its slate other than Modine, Long, Beals and Rob Schneider, who is also seeking a national board seat. The progressive faction has several high-profile reps on the 80-member national board including Modine, Frances Fisher, Diane Ladd and Martin Sheen.