Margaret Thompson has been a probation officer since 1989, first in Virginia, then in Massachusetts since 1998. She became involved in her local when she and several colleagues were having difficulty with a bully in a dysfunctional office. She found standing up for herself and her coworkers rewarding, and she eventually became NAGE Local 229’s secretary and then president.
Margaret’s local has won good contracts with solid financial gains even in difficult financial times, but there’s another impressive gain for the probation officers. “I’m proud that more members are reaching out to the union, and a lot of them are first-time callers,” she said. “We’ve all worked very hard to show members they can be confident in their representation and the result is a substantial increase in member participation.”
Margaret has two grown sons from a previous marriage. Margaret and her spouse, Camille, are caregivers to 96 year old Lucy, Camille's mother, who lives with them in their home. They tend to an extensive garden in their spare time and are devoted Broadway aficionados.
You will sometimes hear NAGE referred to as SEIU Local 5000. NAGE affiliated with SEIU in 1982 to become part of the largest and fastest-growing union in North America, with more than 2 million members.