Center for Worker Justice sees change in leadership

Misty Rebik, who leaves her post at as executive director of CWJ this week -- photo by Adam Burke
Misty Rebik, who leaves her post at as executive director of CWJ this week — photo by Adam Burke

Earlier this week, the Center for Worker Justice of Eastern Iowa, a prominent activist organization, announced a change in leadership.

Executive Director Misty Rebik, who has been with the organization since it was founded in 2012, will be stepping down as of today, Feb. 26.

CWJ works on labor rights, housing and civil rights issues in the area. Recent successes linked to its campaigns have included the implementation of a community ID program, the minimum wage increase passed by the Johnson County Board of Supervisors, increased discussion of housing issues and the recovery of thousands of dollars in wages for local workers.

Replacing Rebik will be Mazahir Salih, previously the Vice President of CWJ, and also one of its original organizers. Salih immigrated from Sudan at the age of 21. She had first-hand knowledge of service industry work and in 2014 she told Little Village, “I learned a lot from the Center: How I have rights to speak in my workplace.”

Sergio Irund A-wan will become CWJ’s new Vice President. CWJ’s Board of Directors has also elected new officers.

In a note from Rebik, she expressed full confidence in the organization’s new leadership. “I have no doubt that Mazahir and Sergio will lead CWJ into another year of victory and community change,” she wrote.

Rebik also recalled the personal significance of her time with CWJ. “Together we have endured many long nights, dozens (and DOZENS!) of community meetings and forums, and door knocking in the middle of an Iowa winter all because we believe in the power of working people,” she wrote. “These memories will guide me for the rest of my life.”

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