Pima Chapter President Maya Castillo wins Arizona Daily Star “40 Under 40” honors

SEIU members already know that Pima SEIU Chapter President Maya Castillo is an exceptionally effective leader.  Now, the Arizona Daily Star has recognized her, too, honoring Maya as one of Old Pueblo’s “40 Under 40.”  She was selected by a judging panel from 250 nominations, based on her professional accomplishments, leadership qualities and community impact.

“It’s an honor and a privilege to be selected for the Arizona Daily Star’s 40 Under 40 Class of 2011,” Maya said.  “I really owe tremendous thanks to my wonderful family who allow me to put time and effort away from them and to my fellow SEIU Pima members (my other family) who work alongside with me to accomplish great things in a right-to-work state.”

Since her election as SEIU Chapter President in August, 2010, Maya has won several remarkable victories for Pima County employees.  Here are just a few highlights:

Faced with proposed increases in health insurance premiums and a two-year deal, Maya led members to fight back, asking the Pima Board of Supervisors for changes.  As a result, the Board agreed to pay 83.3% of the increased costs and revised the plan to one year, giving SEIU the opportunity to have a say in selection of the health care plan in the following year.

Next, Maya organized SEIU members and successfully petitioned the Board of Supervisors to approve a 1% raise for Pima County employees, to offset the increase in costs for the Arizona State Retirement System.  The raise was approved and workers received the raise starting July 1, 2011.

The community has benefited from Maya’s leadership, too, as she brings members together to volunteer for projects ranging from a Back-to-School drive for clothing and supplies, to the “Santa Cruz River Clean-up Day” and “Family Read Aloud Night” at the Santa Rosa Branch of the public library.

Maya has accomplished all this — and more — while working fulltime at the Santa Rosa Library and raising beautiful family.  Perhaps most amazing, Maya gave birth to her second child, Magdalena, on November 10, 2010.  Within a few hours, she had already sent her first message to let SEIU members know we had another fighter on the team!

Maya will be honored at the “40 Under 40” awards breakfast on October 6 at the Doubletree Hotel.

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