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Member Profiles

Robert Deitrick

I spent most of my 24-year teaching career in Juneau, Alaska, working with special education and gifted and talented students in elementary school. During this time, I also temporarily stepped into an administrative role. Currently, I am the president of NEA-Alaska Retired.

I served as an executive officer and on numerous boards prior to retirement.

What do you enjoy most about retirement?
I enjoy the flexibility to do other things. For instance, I serve as a mediator for special education disputes in Alaska. I am still involved in education, but retirement allows me to do other things than just be in the classroom. I can share my knowledge of special education and conflict resolution and present at conferences. I also like to travel when I can, often spending my summers canoeing in the Yukon.

Adrena J. Taylor

I taught third grade for 25 years, and
I was a special reading instructor for two years in South Carolina. I was also a math diagnostician at my school during the last five years of my career.  I was president of the South Carolina Education Association-Retired for the past three years. 

How do you spend your time in retirement?
I do a lot of political advocacy work for public educators with my NEA-Retired chapter. I am very busy going to the state capital with other members to discuss issues that are of importance to retired educators, such as the cost of living.

I am also involved in teaching other members how to lobby effectively for active teachers. In the future, I would like to get more pre-retired members to join SCEA-Retired, because, like any other organization, we are stronger when our membership grows.

Sarah Thomas

I taught business to high school students in Mississippi for 33 years.
I am a member of MississippiNEA-Retired. 

How do you spend your time in retirement?
Since retiring from teaching, I have been politically active in my state, advocating for education reform. I work with my NEA-Retired chapter to recruit new members.

As a part-time employee for NEA, I assist the local president by bringing materials from 38 local schools to NEA representatives in Jackson, Mississippi. I also serve on the state budget committee, where my teaching experience in accounting often comes in handy.
When I am not working, I like to spend time with my 12 grandchildren, ages five to 26. One of my grand-children is a teacher in California.


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