John Commerford Labor Education Awards

The New York Labor History Association founded the John Commerford Labor Education Award in 1987. Each year we celebrate two honorees for their contributions to workers’ empowerment.

The 2017 Awards Reception honoring Bhairavi Desai, co-founder of the New York Taxi Workers Alliance, and Tom Robbins, investigative journalist, will be held Tuesday November 28, 2017 from 6-8pm at 32BJ SEIU,  25 West 18th Street, NYC.

Tickets are $50 each.  Current NYLHA members may purchase two tickets at the member price of $25 each.   Not a member?  Behind in your dues?  Join or renew now (annual dues are $20).

Commerford ticket purchase options:

Ten tickets plus recognition as a sponsor of the reception: $500
Regular ticket: $50 [number of tickets]
New/renewing membership plus one member ticket: $45
New/renewing membership plus two member tickets: $70

Questions about your membership? Need member tickets and are current in your dues? Contact us at rachel@laborarts.org.

Pay via credit card or PayPal below:


Regular Commerford Tickets





New/Renewing Membership & Tickets





Current Member Tickets




Commerford Honorees from 1987 – 2016 Are Listed Below:

Paul Cole, New York State AFL-CIO
Jeannette DiLorenzo, United Federation of Teachers
Kenneth Crowe, Labor Journalist
Joyce D. Miller, ACTWU, AFL-CIO
Ralph Fasanella, Labor Artist
David Montgomery, Yale University
Lois Gray, Cornell University
John J. Sweeney, SEIU, AFL-CIO
Ida Torres, Local 3, RWDSU
Dorothy Swanson, Tamiment Library, New York University
Education Dept., D.C. 37, AFSCME
Gus Tyler, ILGWU, AFL-CIO
Joseph Murphy, City University of New York
Alice Kessler-Harris, Columbia University
Kathy Andrade, Local 23-25, ILGWU
Maria Portalatin, United Federation of Teachers
Morton Bahr, Communications Workers of America
Debra E. Bernhardt, Wagner Labor Archives, New York University
Thomas Y. Hobart, Jr., New York State United Teachers
Philoine Fried, Jewish Labor Committee
Sonny Hall, Transport Workers Union
Daniel J. Leab, Seton Hall University
Brian McLaughlin, NYC Central Labor Council
Judith Helfand, George Stoney & Vera Rony, Filmmakers
Gabriel P. Caprio, Amalgamated Bank
Sol Stetin, Textile Workers Union of America
Edward J. Cleary, New York State AFL-CIO
Kate Bronfenbrenner, Cornell University
Randi Weingarten, United Federation of Teachers
Connie Kopelov, New York Labor History Association
Moe Biller, American Postal Workers Union
Norman Hill, A. Philip Randolph Institute
Denis M. Hughes, New York State AFL-CIO
Jack Schierenbeck, United Federation of Teachers
Theodore Bikel, Associated Actors & Artistes of America
Theodore H. Kheel, Labor Mediator
Forward Association, Jewish Daily Forward
Brenda Berkman, Fire Dept., NYC
Dolores C. Huerta, United Farm Workers
Roger Toussaint, Transport Workers Union, Local 100
Joshua B. Freeman, Queens College & CUNY Graduate Center
Judith P. Vladeck, Vladeck, Waldman, Elias & Engelhard
George Andrucki, Sheet Metal Workers, Local 28
Henry Foner, Fur, Leather & Machine Workers Union
Raglan George, Jr., AFSCME, DC 1707
Steven Greenhouse, The New York Times
George Altomare, United Federation of Teachers
Juan Gonzalez, New York Daily News
Janet Wells Greene, Labor Historian
Michael Mulgrew, United Federation of Teachers
Larry Cary, Labor Lawyer
Jane LaTour, Labor Journalist
Peter Yarrow, Artist & Activist
Barbara Bowen, Professional Staff Congress
Eric Foner, Columbia University
American Labor Museum/Botto House
Arthur Cheliotes, CWA, Local 1180
Stuart Appelbaum, RWDSU, UFCW
Sara Horowitz, Freelancers Union