CSEA members elect Shane Dishman as 46th Association President

San Jose, CA – The California School Employees Association has elected Matthew “Shane” Dishman to serve as its 46th president for the next two years. He was sworn in on Thursday, July 29, 2021.

The largest classified school employees union in the United States, representing a quarter million school support staff throughout California, CSEA is a union democratically governed by its member volunteers in nearly 800 local chapters throughout the state. CSEA members perform a wide range of essential work in our public schools and community colleges, including security, food services, office and clerical work, school maintenance and operations, transportation, academic assistance and paraeducator services, library and media assistance, computer services and more.

“It is humbling to be selected by my sisters and brothers to lead our union,” said Dishman. “I follow in the footsteps of legendary CSEA leaders and will strive to not only live up to their legacies, but to fulfill the trust my colleagues have placed in me to defend their rights and ensure they have the resources they need to best serve their students.”

Association President Dishman has been a police officer with the Kern High School District since 1998 and will leave his post to attend to his new full-time duties at CSEA’s headquarters in San Jose. He has served as president of his local chapter as well as jacketed chief job steward, site representative and chief negotiator. He is a drug recognition expert and trainer, school safety instructor and volunteer in his community.

Dishman succeeds Ben Valdepeña, who has served since 2016 and will now serve two years on the CSEA Board of Directors as immediate past president. During his term as Association President, Valdepeña has overseen the association through the challenges of the U.S. Supreme Court’s Janus decision, privatization of public education attempts, the COVID-19 pandemic, and he leaves it in the strongest financial standing of its history.

“Since our founding in 1927, CSEA has grown to be the largest classified school employee union in the nation and has earned rights for its members like retirement benefits, overtime, weekends, layoff notice and health benefits,” said Valdepeña. “We have weathered challenges throughout our history and the past year has been one of our greatest. Nevertheless, we have not only survived but thrived and I know CSEA will continue to thrive with Association President Dishman at the helm.”