State of Illinois
90th General Assembly

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 1                       HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION
 2        WHEREAS, Albert Shanker, President of the 907,000  member
 3    American  Federation  of Teachers for the past 22 years, died
 4    February 22, 1997 at the age of 68; and
 5        WHEREAS,  Albert  Shanker   received   his   professional
 6    education  and  training  at  the  University  of Illinois at
 7    Champaign-Urbana in 1946 before returning to his  home  state
 8    of New York, where he began his involvement in education, the
 9    labor movement, and his history of civil rights activism; and
10        WHEREAS,  Albert  Shanker  was  a tireless and passionate
11    advocate for those he represented, but also provoked national
12    discussions on the best  way  to  improve  public  education,
13    focusing  on  restructuring schools in the 1980s and becoming
14    the  driving  force  behind  today's  movement  to  set  high
15    national standards for student achievement that  could  match
16    the records of other nations; and
17        WHEREAS,  Albert  Shanker, while fighting the cancer that
18    eventually took his  life,  served  as  an  advisor  to  U.S.
19    Presidents  since the Carter administration and was described
20    in 1996 in an Education Week article as  "probably  the  most
21    influential person in American education"; and
22        WHEREAS,  In  1993,  Albert  Shanker  became the founding
23    president of Education International, the  worldwide  teacher
24    union  federation  formed  by the merger of the International
25    Federation of Free Teacher Unions, to which the AFT belonged,
26    and the World Confederation of Organizations in the  Teaching
27    Profession, to which the NEA belonged; and
28        WHEREAS,   Since  1973,  Albert  Shanker  served  on  the
29    executive council of the AFL-CIO  and  was  chairman  of  its
30    International Affairs Committee for many years; and
31        WHEREAS,  Albert  Shanker  is  survived by his wife of 35
                            -2-                LRB9005030CBcb
 1    years, the former  Edith  Gerber;  children,  Carl,  Michael,
 2    Jennie, and Adam; and three grandchildren; therefore, be it
 5    SENATE   CONCURRING  HEREIN,  that  we  express  our  deepest
 6    sympathies to the family of Albert Shanker; and be it further
 7        RESOLVED, That we also wish to express our  most  sincere
 8    appreciation for his leadership on behalf of America's public
 9    schools  and his vision that teachers and their unions have a
10    vital role in helping students to succeed  in  the  classroom
11    and in their lives; and be it further
12        RESOLVED,  That  suitable  copies  of  this resolution be
13    presented to Edith Shanker,  the  Executive  Council  of  the
14    American  Federation  of Teachers, and the Executive Board of
15    the Illinois Federation of Teachers.

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