Flight Attendant Leadership – You Decide


Do you know someone who always makes your day on the job better and a little brighter; someone you respect and trust? ,

Our AFA-CWA Constitution and Bylaws ensure that our union remains in the hands of Flight Attendants where they work. A single AFA member has the power to bring forward ideas to change the course of our union, to elect the leaders of our union and to hold any position within our leadership.

If AFA wins the representation election, right away Flight Attendants will gain the benefits of membership in AFA, including representation from your flying partners in your base. You will have the opportunity to sign up for membership and have representation from your peers at your airline. Immediately following the union representation election, you will begin another election process; that of electing your peer representatives (read more about the election process). Until elections can be completed, the AFA International President will seek your guidance for temporary placement of Local Officers as your peer representatives. Your input is imperative. We want to be sure to have people you respect as leaders in your location.
Review the officer positions,
as described further on, and tell us whom you think would be a great temporary representative. Submit your preferred candidate for each position. Flight Attendants know who gets the work done and it isn’t always just the people who attend a lot of union meetings. Maybe it’s someone who helped you out when you needed a hand. Maybe it’s someone who has all the latest information. Maybe it’s someone who isn’t afraid to speak up when something’s just not right.

Tell Us Who’s a Leader in Your Base

Send us an email at info@yourafa.org and place ‘Local Officer’ in the subject line. Include the following information in the email:

  • Name of person you want as a leader.
  • Officer position you believe they would best fill.
  • Tell us a little bit about why you believe they’d be a good leader.
  • Your name and base location

It’s important that we hear from you. This is your union, your AFA.

Local Executive Council (LEC)

Newly Organized Carriers with No Contract:

As a newly organized carrier within AFA, you will have a Transitional Local Council President and Secretary. Local Council Officers will initially be appointed by the AFA International President while taking your feedback into consideration. Once a significant portion of the Flight Attendants have signed membership applications, The AFA International Secretary-Treasurer will conduct a formal election which will democratically fill the positions of Local Council President and Secretary. Finally, once you ratify your first contract, elections will then be held for three Local Council Officers (President, Vice President and Secretary) as well as a Local Council Representative (if applicable).

The LEC leadership is comprised of the members’ Flight Attendant peers from the same base location. These are the people a member goes to with questions, when needing assistance or when the member has suggestions or ideas for change.

Newly Organized Carriers with an Existing Contract:

The AFA Executive Board shall appoint Temporary Local Council President(s), Vice President(s), and Secretary(s) who will serve until such time as the AFA International Secretary-Treasurer conducts a formal election which will democratically fill the positions.

Master Executive Council (MEC)

Your Local President is part of the Master Executive Council (MEC), which is the governing body of the union at each airline and is made up of the Local Council Presidents from each base or council. There are probably unique issues in your location, specific to your base, and these issues are the first focus of your local elected officers in working with the MEC. This will ensure attention to specific contractual and daily life issues from the Flight Attendants who know those issues best.

There are three officers (President, Vice President and Secretary) of the MEC who work at the direction of the collective Local Council Presidents to coordinate representation of all of the Flight Attendants at one airline. Unlike Local Council Officers, MEC Officers are not directly elected by the members. The MEC Officers are instead, elected by a majority vote of the Local Council Presidents at your airline.

AFA Board of Directors

Local Council Presidents are also members of the AFA Board of Directors, the highest governing body of our union. This ensures that every member can directly elect and hold accountable the highest governing body of our union.

AFA Builds Strength and Keeps Our Union in Flight Attendant Hands

When AFA signed the merger agreement with the Communications Workers of America (CWA) in 2004, Flight Attendants gained the support, power and solidarity of 700,000 union sisters and brothers while maintaining full autonomy and ownership of our union, the Association of Flight Attendants. Our merger agreement, a legally binding contract with CWA, states:

“The affiliation with CWA is based upon the maintenance of AFA’s full autonomy as an independent labor organization with full control over its funds, assets and policies. (Section 2.a.1)

AFA governance (including officers, terms and elections, LECs, MECs, Executive Board, Board of Directors, and International Officers) shall be determined in accordance with the AFA Constitution and Bylaws. (Section 5.a)

The AFA Constitution and Bylaws can be found on our website at:

Committees The passionate work of volunteers has enabled our union to be the strong and effective voice for Flight Attendants. Flight Attendants who demanded better for our work lives and focused advocacy on critical issues have made real gains for our profession. Elected offices are not the only important positions within our union. We need volunteers who become experts in each of the areas that affect our jobs. For this reason, each AFA MEC and LEC forms committees to address specific job issues with the assistance of our professional AFA staff. Consider who might be a particularly good advocate in one of the following areas – or let us know that you have an interest in this work. You will have access to all of the resources of AFA from day one, including advocacy from your flying partners.

  • Air Safety, Health and Security
  • Employee Assistance (EAP)
  • Grievance
  • Scheduling
  • Reserve
  • Hotel

Local Officer Election Process

AFA Constitution and Bylaws – Article VIII

In compliance with strict regulations, our elections are conducted electronically by the same balloting company used by the National Mediation Board (NMB) and other major organizations. Members may cast a secret ballot over the phone or on-line from anywhere in the world. The elections are a two-step process. First, there is a nomination process that is open to any member in good standing. Any member in the Local Council who receives at least two nominations for a Local Officer position and also submits a statement of willingness-to-serve in that position will be on the ballot. Write-in votes are also welcome.

Nominations – Approximately 6 weeks

Nominations close approximately 30 days after the nomination ballots are sent to members’ homes. The nomination process is conducted using a paper, secret ballot. Once the nominations close there is a two-week response period during which members who have been nominated may submit a willingness-to-serve statement. At the end of the two-week period, the nominations are completed and the election ballots are prepared.

Election – Electronic Balloting, Approximately 30 days

The ballot preparation and printing takes about a week. The election is closed about four weeks after balloting instructions are mailed to all members. The AFA Constitution and Bylaws ensures the balloting time period recognizes our unique work lives and the likelihood of being away from home for days or weeks at a time. Once the election closes, the balloting agency tabulates the results and provides the report to AFA for announcement within a few hours.

Newly elected officers will receive immediate leadership training and the resources and support necessary to run the Local Council. Every dollar of AFA dues is allocated by the Local Council Presidents who make up the AFA Board of Directors and all monies are directed toward protecting and advancing Flight Attendant careers.

Local Council Officer Positions

Article III.C.3. – Jurisdiction and Duties

Local Council President Duties

The Local Council President has specific duties according to our Constitution and Bylaws which include:

  • holding membership meetings;
  • serving as a member of the Master Executive Council and Board of Directors;
  • “responsible for the expeditious processing of complaints and grievances of that Council’s members and promoting their interests locally in whatever way possible;”
  • “responsible for implementing, administering and explaining the policies of the Local Executive Council and Master Executive Council, the Board of Directors, and Executive Board as they pertain to that Local Council;”
  • informing Local Council Officers and committees and safeguarding all files, correspondence, documents and other materials – and promptly transferring them to her/his successor; and
  • consulting with and taking into account the opinions and thoughts of the other Local Council Officers. It is expected that a Local Council President will exercise her/his judgment in the best interests of her/his members.”

Local Council Vice President

The Vice President performs all of the President’s duties in her/his absence and assists the President with representing Flight Attendants in the Local Council.

Local Council Secretary

The Secretary of the Local Council assists the President with administering Local Council funds, maintaining Council records, and representing Flight Attendants in the Local Council.

Local Council Representative

The work of the Local Council increases according to the size of the membership. Our Constitution and Bylaws provides for Council Representative(s) to be elected as additional officers in order to assist in representing members in the Local Council. Article III.C.1.c. provides a Local Council with the ability to decide whether to have 1 or 2 Council Representatives.