Who We Are 

GEOC was formed in 1998 when a group of graduate students at Wayne State University came together to fight for their health benefits that were about to be cut by the University. The union has since grown to 500+ members drawn from all departments on campus and reflects Wayne State's diverse population. All members of the steering committee and department stewards are volunteers that work to create a strong collective voice for our bargaining unit. Our staff organizers work nonstop to maintain our membership and help the union run smoothly.

Our Values


As a collective, GEOC members have created and passed the following values that we believe express the beliefs and principles that guide our work. View our complete values statement here. 

  • GEOC opposes every form of hatred, harassment, violence, intimidation, exclusion, explicit or implicit bias, and personal or structural oppression of marginalized groups, including but not limited to people of color, women, LGBTQ people, immigrants and non-U.S. citizens and their descendants, religious minorities and the nonreligious, disabled people, and people of low socioeconomic status. GEOC will stand in solidarity with affected people against perpetrators regardless of the entities or persons involved.

  • GEOC supports the broad availability of health care, including all transition-related care, and opposes efforts to restrict the availability of sexual health information, contraceptives, and reproductive healthcare.


  • GEOC opposes efforts to disenfranchise voters, to restrict the freedom of speech, of assembly, or of the press, to increase surveillance of individuals or organizations, or otherwise to compromise civil liberties or the functioning of a democratic society.


  • GEOC supports the payment of a living wage to every worker in all forms of employment, regardless of responsibility, title, full-or-part-time status, citizenship, nation of origin, or documentation status.


  • GEOC supports the right of all workers to adequate utilities and tools to do their job with efficiency, security, and safety.


  • GEOC supports the right of all workers to ensure their working hours are respected. We oppose the exploitation of workers’ hours in any way.

  • The GEOC supports the rights of workers to organize into unions, as well as other venues for collective power, to improve the situation of working people regardless of their occupation, nationality, or immigrant status.


  • GEOC supports groups and actions organized in support of principles above, including efforts to ensure active support for these principles by Wayne State University or by other powerful institutions or individuals. 

Steering Committee

E Drake pic.jpeg

Elizabeth Drake


Department of English


Jamie McQuaid


Department of History


JT Popiel


Department of History

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M. Colleen McDaniel

Grievances Officer

Department of Psychology


Minerva Gale

Communications Chair

Department of English


Sean O'Brien

Bargaining Research Chair

Department of History

Staff Organizers


Taylor Monday

Full Time Organizer

Nicolas Tedesco

Full Time Organizer

Christian Bozeman

Graduate Student Assistant

Department of History

Department Stewards