NewsGuild Professional Staff
KARI BIENIAS, Local Representative, comes to the Guild from the Communications Workers of America (CWA), where she was the Organizing Director for the Print, Publishing and Media Workers Sector. Previously, Kari served as the Local Representative and Vice President for CWA Local 14156, leading contract negotiations for units across the print media industry, including the New York Times, the Daily News, the New York Post. She received her Masters in Labor Studies at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
CHRIS BROOKS, Mobilizing Director, comes to the Guild from Labor Notes, where he worked as a staff writer and organizer, providing organizing training and strategic consultation to thousands of workers across the United States and Canada. Prior to that, he was a labor and community organizer in Tennessee, training rank-and-file activists, bargaining new contracts, and building community power. As a journalist, Chris has bylines in numerous national magazines, news publications, and academic journals. He received his Masters in Labor Studies from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
JACK DICKEY is a Local Representative at the Guild. He joined in July 2020 after seven years as a writer and editor at Sports Illustrated and TIME, where he covered baseball, football, culture, business, and politics, and was first vice chair of the union at Time Inc. He also co-led the successful organizing drive at SI after its sale in fall 2019. Before that, Jack was on staff at Deadspin. He graduated magna cum laude from Columbia in 2013 with a B.A. in English, and he was a two-time Jeopardy! champion.
CLAIRE HIRSCHBERG, Organizer, comes to the guild from SAG-AFTRA where she worked nationally organizing all your favorite NPR stations. Before SAG-AFTRA, Claire organized charter schools with UTLA in Los Angeles. She now lives in Philly and has too many chihuahuas (Miss Cleo the leader is featured here) who have organized against her. Per the dog union agreement they appear once per zoom meeting.
RYAN HUANG is the Guild’s Bookkeeper, joining with over 40 years of experience across various industries with specialized expertise in accounting and financial consulting. Born and raised in China, he graduated from high school at the age of 15 with a dream of earning a college degree from an American university, a dream that came true in ’93 at Hunter College – City University of New York. Since then, he has worn several hats from being a Senior Accountant at a publishing house, as well as at a CPA firm, to the Controller and then Director of Finance at a marketing firm, before working as a consultant to successfully help individuals establish their own businesses. Outside of work, he has a passion for pop music – so much, in fact, that he even earned a diploma in multi-track recording technology.
MARIANNE LENABAT, Campaign Lead, joined the Guild in 2021 from the Alberta Union of Provincial Employees, where she served as Senior Organizing Advisor. She teaches at CUNY School of Labor and Urban Studies and has been an organizer and trainer with the Industrial Workers of the World since 2014.
NASTARAN MOHIT is the Organizing Director of the NewsGuild of New York, where she oversees the organizing program for the local. Nastaran began organizing with the Guild in 2012 on a project basis and was hired full time in 2015. Nastaran has organized hundreds of media professionals into the NewsGuild, leading successful campaigns at publications like The Los Angeles Times, Law360, Mic.com, The New Republic and The New Yorker. She has worked as an NYC-based labor and community organizer for the last 15 years. She is a graduate of Binghamton University, and received her Masters in Labor Studies from the Joseph S. Murphy Institute for Labor Studies at the City University of New York.
BRYAN NELSON, Local Representative, comes to the NewsGuild of New York with over 10 years of experience as a labor organizer, representative, and educator in a variety of union settings in both the private and public sectors, including a workers’ center where he helped build power among undocumented workers and community allies to fight wage theft and recover unpaid wages. Prior to joining the staff of the NewsGuild of New York, Bryan represented nurses and health professionals and also served as a Unit Chair and Executive Council member of the Washington-Baltimore News Guild. The product of a union household, he shares the NewGuild's commitment to union democracy and building power through organizing.
ANTHONY NAPOLI came to the Local from The New York Times in February 2006. He currently serves as the Local's Senior Representative and as a chief negotiator. He also serves as the local treasurer, which is an elected position.
Prior to his job at the Local, Anthony served as the Grievance Chair of the Times unit for three years, was elected as the unit’s First Vice Chairperson and as an Executive Board member.
Anthony was hired by the newspaper on April l, 1986, as a pot-washer in the company cafeteria. Two years later, he stepped up to a delivery clerk position in the receiving department, and became a shop steward. He was promoted in 1996 as an advertising production representative in the customer order fulfillment. He won a technical merit award from The Times for creating and implementing a process for posting web ads in the newspaper.
Anthony attended what was then C.W. Post College (now Long Island University), majoring in business management.
BEVERLY SLOAN is a Local Representative who comes to the Guild from Actors' Equity Association with 30 years' combined experience as a union representative and senior business rep overseeing the national LORT agreement as well as Off-Broadway, Theatre for Young Audiences, and multiple Stock agreements, among others. Beverly has a BA in creative writing and government from Penn State and a law degree from NYU. Never wanted to be a lawyer, though.
CARLY SMITH is a Local Representative. She comes to the NewsGuild of New York from SEIU, where she represented private sector workers in higher education and human services. She joined the labor movement as a member of the Professional Staff Congress/CUNY, the faculty and staff union of the City University of New York, where she served on the Executive Council representing the part-time faculty of the nation's largest public university system. Outside work, Carly likes riding bikes and teaches group road cycling skills as a volunteer with the New York Cycle Club.
LENA SOLOW is a Local Representative who comes to the NewsGuild after working for CWA Local 1180, representing shops in the non-profit, hospitality, and daycare sectors. Before their work at CWA Local 1180, Lena was an RWDSU member who helped lead the successful union campaign at the store Babeland. Their writing has appeared in VICE, Teen Vogue, and The New Republic. They are a proud member of the Freelancers Project in the National Writers Union.
HEATHER TROBE, Organizer, joined the Guild in 2019 after spending six years as a reporter. She's helped to organize multiple publications throughout the Guild, including Business Insider/Insider, Martha Stewart Living, People.com, Shape Magazine, Entertainment Weekly, Ziff Davis, and Forbes. As a former reporter, Heather believes that collective action is the best weapon for challenging oppressive power dynamics in the workplace. She's a graduate of Vassar College and CUNY Hunter College School of Social Work, as well as a former children's birthday party entertainer/mad scientist named "Hydrogen Heather."
TIM TRY comes to the NewsGuild of New York as its Membership Associate after spending seven years with Actors' Equity Association as the Audition Center Manager. At Equity, he helped ensure that AEA members were able to attend union organized auditions in a fair and equitable way and according to contractual requirements. Prior to that, Tim spent his career onstage, working in union theaters across the county. Tim is a freelance photographer in his spare time. His work includes his colleagues headshots you see on this page.
WEN ZHUANG, works across communications, press, and organizing. She comes from being an organizer and coordinator with the Emergency Workplace Organizing Committee, a distributed grassroots organizing program that supports workers organizing in their workplaces. Previously, she was the Assistant Director of Editorial Projects at the Vera List Center, a research center and public forum at The New School. She has also worked on organizing and communications strategy for electoral and legislative campaigns in NYC. She is usually with her dog, Billie.
ADDY BAIRD, Organizer, comes to the Guild from BuzzFeed News, where she worked as a political reporter and served as unit chair, helping bargain their monumental first contract. Outside work, Addy loves baseball and yoga.
MICHELLE MERLIN, Organizer, comes to the Guild after working for about a decade as a local news reporter. She most recently worked at The Morning Call in Allentown, Pennsylvania, where she helped form a union and fight for better conditions with her unionized colleagues across the Tribune chain. When she's not working, Michelle can be found pointing out squirrels to her dog, Lily.
ANNIE SHIELDS, Organizer, comes to the guild fromThe Nation magazine where she helped organize her shop as a Guild member for 10 years. She served on the Local Executive Committee from 2020 - 2022 where she realized that working in the labor movement was her true calling. Annie is frequently accompanied on her daily Zoom calls by her feline friend Jelly.