United Faculty of Florida Staff

Headquarters Staff

Candi Churchill

Executive Director

Candi is the Executive Director of the United Faculty of Florida. She started out with UFF as a local leader with Graduate Assistants United (the UF chapter) in 2000 as a Senator, Steward for the Sociology department and Chair of the Health Insurance campaign. She began working professionally for UFF in 2002 when all 11 university chapters were threatened with decertification by the Jeb! administration’s devolution of the State University System. That campaign yielded over 70% support from faculty at all the universities and two re-certification elections at UWF and FSU (which both yielded over 94% yes votes). Since 2004, she has been a Service Unit Director working with chapters on strengthening their capacity and growing membership, as well as handling training needs, arbitrations, impasse, and crises. She enjoys time hiking in the Colorado and North Carolina mountains, swimming in North Florida’s beautiful springs, playing board games and organizing for women’s rights.

Marshall Ogletree

Retired Consultant

Marshall Ogletree is the former Executive Director, now retired, of the United Faculty of Florida. He has served in this position since November 2014. Previous to this position, Marshall was the Executive Director of the Pinellas Classroom Teachers Association and prior to that was a Legislative Specialist for the Florida Education Association for 21 years. He also taught high school mathematics in Pinellas County. He is a graduate of the University of South Florida with B.A. and M.A. degrees.

Aileen Ray

Secretary (Membership)

Shenel Ransey


Field Staff

Lauren Byers

Service Unit Director, Organizing (Central/South)

Lauren began her work with UFF while studying history at the University of Florida in 2011 when million dollar budget cuts hit the Florida public university system. She then went on to work as a higher education organizer in New York and New Jersey for the American Federation of Teachers/New York State United Teachers/AFT New Jersey and was a part of a successful adjunct unionization campaign at Brookdale Community College, as well as state-wide membership campaigns in light of the impending Janus decision. In January of 2018 Lauren returned to her home state to continue her work with UFF as a Service Unit Director and Lead Organizer in central and south Florida.

Cristal Cruz

Service Unit Director, Labor Relations/Organizing (Central/South)

A long-term advocate for worker, women, immigrant, and student rights, Cristal Cruz joins UFF after having served FEA K-12 members as a Service Unit Director and Regional Specialist in the Southern Region. As an undergraduate student and Resident Assistant in the University of Massachusetts – Amherst in the early 2000’s, Cristal helped organize the Residents Assistant Union (UAW 2322), the first labor union of undergraduate students in the country. Since then, Cristal has served the hotel workers union, the Florida AFL-CIO, and community organizations in different capacities in the US and Canada. With over 15 years of professional experience, Cristal’s extensive work has included worker and community organizing, political organizing, campaign strategy, corporate research, and bargaining and advocacy. She has most recently served K-12 locals in the Southern Region as a chief negotiator and advocate. A native of Puerto Rico and proud Florida resident, Cristal will be serving UFF as a Service Unit Director focusing on organizing, bargaining and advocacy in the Central and Southern region. When she is not working on building our movement, you can find Cristal reading, hiking, practicing yoga, traveling, or color-coordinating lists.

Emily McCann

Service Unit Director, Labor Relations (North)

Emily began her work with United Faculty of Florida while attending graduate school at the University of Florida (Ph.D, English). She caught the organizing bug during UF-GAU’s 2011 very successful drive to organize ahead of feared decertification legislation. As a UFF member, Emily served as secretary, co-chief negotiator, and co-president of UF-GAU. After graduating in 2014, Emily accepted a position as Senior Program Officer with the American Association of University Professors. During her time at AAUP, she was lead organizer on the successful campaign to organize a new union at Plymouth State University (NH). Emily returned to Florida in late 2015 to accept the position of Executive Director of the Miracle Strip Service Unit, which serves K-12 and support professional locals in Bay, Walton, and Gulf Counties. Prior to joining UFF in 2020, Emily worked as FEA’s Northern Region Bargaining and Advocacy Specialist, providing expertise in impasse, arbitration and budget analysis to chapters north of I-4. As a product of public education from kindergarten to her doctorate, Emily is honored to work on behalf of faculty and professionals at Florida colleges and universities.

Graham Picklesimer

Service Unit Director, Labor Relations (Central/South)

A graduate of Hillsborough County Public Schools in Tampa, Florida, Graham attended the University of Florida for undergraduate school (BS Mathematics/BA Economics) and graduate school (MS Applied Mathematics/MA Teaching Mathematics). He first joined the United Faculty of Florida as a member the University of Florida Graduate Assistants United chapter during graduate employee orientation in the fall of 2009. As a UFF member, Graham served as a department steward, grievance representative, chief negotiator, and co-president of UF-GAU, as well as the GAU Bargaining Council Vice President of UFF and co-chair of the American Federation of Teachers’ Alliance of Graduate Employee Locals (AGEL). After graduating in 2013, Graham began working for the Florida Education Association. Prior to joining UFF in 2019, Graham worked as FEA’s Southern Region Bargaining & Advocacy Specialist, providing expertise in impasse, arbitration, and related matters to FEA K-20 local affiliates in central and southern Florida. Graham also previously worked as Treasure Coast Service Unit Director, assisting FEA’s K-12 affiliates in Indian River, Martin, and Okeechobee counties with representation and organizing efforts on behalf of public school instructional and non-instructional employees.

Adela Ghadimi

Service Unit Director, Organizing (North)

Bio Coming Soon…

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