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Executive Board Statements


President Position

Begonya De Salvo

Dear Colleagues:

I am Begonya De Salvo, and I humbly ask you to vote for me as your new Union President.

Our current Union leaders have done an abysmal job.

They have kept substandard financial records, excluded members from union participation, weakened the union's bargaining position during the pandemic, and have not complied with labor election laws.


■ The Union has not disclosed proper financial statements since 2019, and failed to issue "Income and Expense Declarations" four out of the last five years. Union President Michael Ferreira and the other union executives bear responsibility for this appalling recordkeeping. Please read the email statement of Gloria Lindemann, my running mate for Secretary-Treasurer, for more details.

■ Region 2 interpreters are up in arms over the Union's subversion of rank-and-file participation – and allege that President Ferreira and Vice President Janet Hudec excluded their elected representative from contract bargaining, "contrary to Union bylaws and past practice." These allegations are serious – and illustrate the chasm between Union leadership and rank-and-file interpreters.

 ■ President Ferreira and VP Hudec endorsed an outspoken anti-vaxer for "Lead Steward for Region 1." This person is no longer an employee and the steward position now remains unfilled. How can management take us seriously in negotiations when a main player refused to comply with the vaccine mandate and opposed widespread vaccination so critical to workplace safety? 

 ■ President Ferreira and VP Hudec entered into a temporary agreement with the administration that surrendered, until August 2022, all bargaining power during the pandemic. It has now handicapped our efforts to obtain "hero pay" for the health hazards we risked while working in court during the pandemic – even as other court and county employees receive such bonuses. The Union made this decision unilaterally, without consultation from the membership. 

 ■ President Ferreira and VP Hudec excluded me – a Union steward – from "Meet and Confer" negotiations for telework. I was an early advocate for telework – but Ferreira and Hudec claimed I was "not experienced enough" to join the bargaining. But Union leaders have shown that their "experience" doesn’t come hand in hand with good judgment.

■ Ferreira missed the deadline for filing his election statement – and then the election board (comprised of fellow executives) granted him an unwarranted extension. The Union bylaws provide no grounds for bending election rules in such a way.

■ Union leaders have illegally refused to release to me a list of all CFI members – in violation of the Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act, 29 U.S.C. § 481(c). Under this federal law, I have the right to obtain this information, to enable me to reach out to Union members and campaign. For more on how Union leaders are flouting the labor election law, see my website,

Rank-and-file members are awakening. Members who have never voted before in a union election, or who in the past haven't paid much attention, are going to have a say in our upcoming election. 

We should no longer tolerate this terrible leadership.

Enough is enough. Use your voice and make it heard by voting them out. Vote for my slate, vote for the New Union: Gabriela Mejia for Vice President, Gloria Lindemann for Secretary-Treasurer, and me as your new President – leaders who welcome all voices and who believe in transparency and inclusion.

Very truly yours,

Begonya De Salvo
Candidate for President


Vice-President Position

 Janet Hudec

An Interview with Janet Hudec  

1. Why are you running for re-election?

I am running for re-election for various reasons. Primarily to be part of the solution. I want to continue fostering healing from the past, strengthen our unity, empower our stewards and rank and file members, promote teamwork, nourish and encourage new leaders. 

During these past 2 years I have served as an ambassador for our profession. I have the experience and the understanding of the history of our collective journey as interpreters. I passionately believe in this profession and I am always looking for ways to protect and improve it. I am acutely aware of the issues interpreters face at a state, regional, and local level. I am a visionary who is also cognizant of the problems that may arise in the future and know how to lead the Local into future.

2. Why do you think you are the best candidate for the job?

I am the best candidate for the Vice Presidency because I believe that through strong leadership, transparent practices, team collaboration, accountability, and a responsive Union that intelligently and effectively attends to labor representation of its members will make CFI stronger than it has ever been.

I am always willing to listen to anybody, anytime, regardless of opinion. I have a proven record of vigorously advocating, representing, and enforcing the MOU and labor law. I am servant-hearted, hard working, honest, compassionate, trustworthy, team player, and a visionary.  I will work to ensure that our members are represented at all levels. I am not afraid to take a strong stand and tell it like it is when necessary, particularly to court administrators. I bring strong determination and passion to our tireless efforts.

3. During your tenure as Vice President, what have been your accomplishments?

During my tenure I have had many accomplishments. I have prevailed in grievances, unfair labor practices, stopped furloughs, and had success in legislation advocacy. I teamed up with Carmen Ramos to negotiate Covid-19 safety protocols and the restructuring of our budget. But I have also had set backs. 

My biggest accomplishment has been helping my fellow colleague and seeing that in a small way, I was able to make a difference.

4. What is your vision for the Local?

As linguistic professionals, we make a difference, we change lives and outcomes. Although there are differences that separate us, I believe we can still achieve our common goals. Unity is not sameness. Unity is teamwork through collaboration and the respect of our diversity. Greater vigilance is always needed against the forces attacking and undermining our Labor Union and the constitutional right to equal access that jeopardize the civil rights of linguistic minorities. 

I envision a thriving Union where mutual respect among professionals coupled with the accountability that recognizes the distinct interest of each member. Regardless of our opinion, stance, or differences— we are ill-serve when short-sighted motives trumps the steadfast commitment of putting our members interest first.   

5. What are some of the issues that the Local will be facing in the future?

VRI will be an ongoing issue for years to come and I foresee that Judicial Council will be busy trying to pass laws that will allow the broader use of VRI. Courts new approach on VRI and their plan to do away with the stipend when doing VRI in-house. We have a large generation of Interpreters approaching retirement and that will affect staffing levels. Courts continued efforts to discourage employment. Outsourcing. Courts refusal to cross assign across regions. Bargaining. Interpreter Act fixes. Budget/funding. 

Vote Janet Hudec for Vice President. 

Gabriela Mejia 

Dear colleagues,

A couple of weeks ago I decided to open my HOME to a group of colleagues who were excited not just about getting together but to get to know us, the slate that is working very hard to be the NEW UNION.

I decided to open the doors of my home as a symbolism of one of our proposals, to have an Open-door policy, to be inclusive of our members regardless of them being independent or staff and most of all: TRANSPARENCY!

We will be will be absolutely transparent in each and every move and transaction we make. Everything will always be available for our members to see whenever they need or want to.

As your VP, I will support the President in making things happen, and I will continue to reach out to interpreters throughout the state to make sure that their voices are heard and that the things that are important to them are the things that the Union leadership make happen, always with our members interests’ first and with transparency.

Networking is a vital component, not only for the campaign but something that we want to implement from now on. An informed member, makes better decisions and that is why we strongly believe that a Newsletter that comes out periodically and consistently is vital. In our newsletter we will make sure to emphasize the idea of a strong and transparent communication with all our members, communication that will flow in both directions and is easy, open and transparent.

I would be honored to be a servant to the members, I will be there to make their collective ideas come to fruition and  help lead a transition to a more interactive and approachable union that they feel is their own.

Information is power! An informed person is in a much better position to get what he/she wants, I will make sure that it happens. 

Along with Presidential candidate Begonya de Salvo and Secretary Treasurer candidate Gloria Lindemann I am sure we will make the difference that all interpreters want in a Union, YOUR Union, a Union that is not just a few names, a Union that makes you feel that you belong, where you will be included, protected and will be able to give your opinion, agreements and yes, also disagreements, which together we can work on to make this concept not just an abstract one, but a reality.

Together we are better, VOTE! 

I am a person of moral integrity, honesty, transparent and most of all open to new ideas and positive criticism.

Trust me with your vote and I promise I will not disappoint you.


Gabriela Mejia
VP Candidate

 Silvia San Martin


 “The pandemic put every aspect of our lives into perspective. Our safety was always TOP priority for Silvia. I am voting for her because I have no doubt that she will devote her relentless intensity and drive to improving our working conditions, educating the public and court staff, advocating for fair compensation, expanding support for our union, and coalescing existing members toward one common goal.” Vanessa W., member.

 “Silvia is determined and not afraid to speak her mind. An excellent interpreter who always acts with professionalism and respect.” Gaby V. 

 “Tenacious. Relentless when it comes to fighting for interpreters’ compensation, benefits and working conditions.” Ana F.

 “Silvia has brought change as well as a greater sense of unity.” Sylvia J.

I have served alongside Silvia for the past few years. Silvia is dedicated, professional, and astutely informed in regards to our member's concerns. Silvia's diplomatic approach and level-headedness has served our organization well in these challenging times. I can't think of a better candidate. 
Alejandro González, Steward – Riverside

I’m very happy that Silvia is running for VP. As R4 representative she committed to improving the working conditions of every county, even remote ones like mine where she built a relationship never before had with both membership and administration. The stewards meetings she implemented keep us informed of struggles and triumphs while creating unity. She is dedicated, trustworthy and inclusive to the voices of others. 
Esther Neblina, Steward – Imperial County

Outstanding individual, caring, professional, dedicated and very knowledgeable. I encourage everyone to vote for Silvia as our next VP.

Nancy Wilson, Steward - San Bernardino

Silvia has great insight into the issues pertaining to interpreter and language access matters. She has always been ready to build relationships and consensus with members and court administration. She is a champion for the rights of interpreters, has the ability to see things from different perspectives, and is open to dialogue and new ideas. Knowing Silvia for almost twenty years, I can say that she is not power-hungry. Silvia does not care for the spotlight and values, in fact, expects input from others in an open, democratic manner. 
Gemma Yosick, Steward – San Diego

Beyond a doubt, Silvia is the best candidate for VP. I have worked alongside Silvia for many years and have witnessed firsthand her hard work and dedication. Volunteering countless hours for the difficult and demanding positions of steward, bargaining committee member and Region 4 Representative, she has proven to be an intelligent advocate. CFI needs union officers with heart, who serve with integrity and solidarity and strive to reach consensus based on democratic processes and genuine cooperation.  
Rebeca Vera, Steward – San Diego

I worked closely with Silvia San Martín on the CFI board and wholeheartedly endorse her for Vice President. Silvia raises the bar with the education, nuanced approach based on experience, and equitable values she brings to the table. Silvia knows that truth isn’t optional. Her deeply-held democratic values not only translate into a membership-driven approach, but are essential to any functioning, successful union. Silvia is tireless in the pursuit of better working conditions and will help us preserve and elevate our profession. 
Kristina Ramsey, previous R2 Representative

I have endorsed Silvia San Martín because she´s done things with Region 4 that have never been done before. She has united stewards, increased membership, formed strong working relationships with administrators, and improved working conditions. I haven´t met anyone more dedicated than Silvia. If you want to see our profession flourish, join me and VOTE for Silvia San Martín for Vice President.   
Jackie Ruiz, upcoming R4 Representative

Because circles tend to expand 

 Secretary-Treasurer Position

Carmen Ramos

Dear Members,

I have been a steward, mobilizer and activist since 2012.  CFI achieved a substantial improvement in working conditions in Santa Clara County, including the implementation of Team Interpreting and the removal of a tyrannical Manager that harassed interpreter employees and broke the MOU routinely.  I forged strong alliances with the Santa Clara Legal and Labor Community, which eventually led to hiring our attorney, Laurie Burgess, who currently assists us in Bargaining for all Regions.  I was also able to mobilize Independent Contractors in Santa Clara Court, which led to a substantial wage increase in Region 2. I have drawn media attention to our struggles in R2 and R3.   I filed a grievances that have disclosed the enormous waste of public funds as a result of the ludicrous allocation budget implemented by the Judicial Council on July 1, 2021.

I have an “outside the box” way of strategizing all issues I have taken on, I am extremely aggressive in my approach of fighting the Courts in their Union bashing methods used to keep our wages down. 

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Janet Hudec, VP,  and I negotiated health and safety agreements with each of the R3 and R2 Courts.  We were able to get Administrative paid leave for IPT interpreters at the onset of the pandemic in R2, and an extension of COVID-19 extended sick leave in other courts.  

This is my first term in a position of leadership at CFI,  and I am committed to finish the projects we set out to complete, many of which got derailed because of the COVID-19 pandemic, among them:

1. Continuing to work on Legislation to reform the Interpreter Act so we can get out from under the Judicial Council's toxic grasp.

2. More training a recruitment of stewards.

3. Hiring a state wide business Representative, now that I have accomplished to have a healthy Legal Defense Fund and Strike Fund to assist us with Bargaining and enforcing our MOU.

4. Continue with providing free classes for continuing education, instead of having a costly, in person conference.

CFI needs the expertise of seasoned stewards and union officers to lead the way, and I am committed to keep training our new stewards so they have the ability to take charge of  Local in the future. We are facing serious battles are the bargaining table, and we are in the middle of negotiations in R2. A change of horses in the middle of the race, would be disastrous. 

I was the Chairperson on the R3 negotiations. Our bargaining was done in record time, 2 and a half months. We have a 25% stipend in Region 3, which has allowed the members that are performing VRI to do so under set guidelines. Our members that have consistently preformed VRI have gotten a substantial wage increase which is building on their pension. 

I have also been able to accomplish a very healthy budget: we have a strike fund, and legal defense fund, and a healthy reserve for wages and operational needs. Our Local is paying our bills timely, and is compliant with Department of Labor guidelines 100%, and is able to offer continuing education classes for our members at no cost to them.

The budget is posted in our members only section for your review, and you will see that I have turned our financials around. When I took office, I ordered a complete audit of the Local, and have steered our finances around so we can afford Attorneys at our Bargaining Table.  Pasted below, are the links to the media coverage I have accomplished for CFI.

I respectfully ask for your vote so I continue to serve our Local.

In Unity,

Carmen Ramos, current Secretary-Treasurer   


Gloria Lindemann

Dear colleagues,

My name is Gloria Lindemann, and I am running for the position of Secretary-Treasurer.

I believe that a true leader is one who knows the way, goes the way and shows the way. The key to successful leadership is demonstrating wisdom, dedication and motivation in every action. It is certainly not about titles and positions, flow of command or flowcharts but the ability to influence others by displaying transparencyaccountability, and inclusion.

 we have often been silent and complacent, unwilling to become involved because we believed that we were doing fine and that if it does not affect us personally, it’s not so important. But how can we aim to be better, to be the best that we can be unless we are challenged at some point. I personally enjoy a good challenge. Many great colleagues have complained and left the Union because they have felt excluded. They have felt excluded from important negotiations, they have felt excluded because they felt their voices didn’t matter. The truth is we haven’t been able to meet standards of service and expectations. However, Budgeting, forecasting, Planning, and disclosing are vital to have a financially healthy organization. I want to have an audit at least once a year, and a quarterly Profit &Loss review. 

I checked our website to look at our financial situation and was very surprised to see that we only have one-year disclosed: 2019. We are at the end of 2021, and we only have budget projections for 2020 and 2021

In my opinion, any organization with such large membership should have quarterly statements published and have available at least 3 years of financials. In our case we are missing “Income & ExpenseDeclarations” for: 2017, 2018, 2020, and 2021. This situation shows that we haven’t been able to keep up with our financials. 

When was the last audit performed? Why didn’t we get a copy? Is it because they have not been performed? Or is it because they are simply not disclosed? We have requested the Union their financials and we have only been provided guidance to look at the members only web site, and what we have in there is only one-year Income & Expense Declaration [2019]; Budget projections for 2020, and 2021, no further information has been provided.

Please take a look at our 2019 year Income and Expense declaration –


Some of the biggest expenses were:

Estimated income 700,000

Payroll Expenses


Legal Fees


**Professional Services




Bargaining Mobilizing




Location Expenses


Annual Conference





Would you like to have more information? Always ask questions, stay informed! Transparency and Accountability matter. 

I firmly believe that the depth and breadth of my experience makes me a worthy choice for the position of Secretary-Treasurer. A New Union is possible. 

Very truly yours,

Gloria Lindemann