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National Board Certified Teacher Julie Van Winkle is a two-time UCLA graduate with a master’s degree in Education and over a decade of classroom teaching experience. She is credentialed in Math, Science, and Multiple Subjects. 

As a new teacher in the mid-2000s, Julie was one of the RIF’d teachers. She spent several years teaching at a nonunionized charter middle school, and this experience helped her to realize the importance of having a union to advocate for the rights of educators, students, and the community.

As soon as she could, Julie returned to LAUSD and became active in UTLA as a Chapter Chair at John Liechty Middle School, the school that experienced the most teacher layoffs during the RIF layoff era. She was a Lead Teacher and a mentor for new teachers, and she collaborated with her peers and the Local District to create innovative, inquiry-based Math units. During this time, Julie worked with community members and colleagues to fight against layoffs and cuts, and became increasingly active in UTLA. 

Like many millennial teachers in LA, Julie experienced displacement several times during her teaching career. Despite the uncertainty and anxiety this caused, Julie was able to experience a wide variety of school settings — including middle school, high school, span school, continuation school, and a variety of substitute teaching assignments — and has had the opportunity to work with many amazing educators and students along the way. She served three terms as a member of the UTLA Board of Directors, and eventually became North Area Chair. 

After 12 years in the classroom, Julie served as the UTLA Liaison to the Local Options Oversight Committee, the group that works with Autonomous Schools (Pilot, ESBMM, and LIS). This position required negotiating skills and a deep understanding of the UTLA contract, along with the different agreements governing Autonomous Schools. Julie’s knowledge of the contract deepened when she represented North Area on the UTLA Bargaining Team during the years leading up to the historic strike of 2019.

During her term as UTLA Secondary Vice President, Julie was one of the Lead Negotiators in UTLA’s first Expanded Bargaining Team. This team won contract language to further decrease class/caseload sizes, add social/emotional support staff to schools, codify the Black Student Achievement Plan and Community Schools into our Collective Bargaining Agreement, and secure the largest pay raise UTLA members have seen in decades (21%).

Currently, Julie serves as the AFT Vice President. Her goal is to strengthen UTLA’s relationships with other AFT locals, and to share UTLA’s social and racial justice agenda with teacher unions across the state and the country.