Tricia Schroeder, President
Tricia not only lives and breathes union, she grew up there, too – in Union, WA! She watched small-town, hard-working people go without medical care for on-the-job injuries; work themselves to the bone but not make enough to pay bills or put gas in the car to get to their jobs; and know that they might not be able to retire with dignity.
These experiences inspired her to fight for a better future for all workers.
For six years, Tricia worked as a community and political organizer at nonprofits in Boston. She trained women to run for public office, and helped usher in the biggest increase in women elected statewide. As part of the Working Families coalition, she helped pass a historic capital gains tax. Tricia knew that mobilizing neighborhoods and communities traditionally ignored by politicians was key to building a truly grassroots base in order to elect champions and pass good laws for working families.
In doing this strategic community-building with allied organizations, Tricia saw first-hand how people coming together in a union had the power to improve wages, benefits, and workplace safety. She saw how union members fought to reduce racial and gender disparities for all people, not just union members; and that no matter where people lived, the color of their skin, or the language they spoke, workers everywhere united to fight for protection, pay, and respect.
Through organizing, building political power, and increasing member engagement, Tricia helped build one of the strongest public sector locals in the country. She spent her first years at SEIU 925 with child care providers fighting for the right to form a union. As Political Director, she shaped SEIU 925’s COPE (Committee on Political Education) from a small unit into a large, active program — enabling SEIU 925 members to build political power and influence public policy. While serving as the elected Executive Vice President, she helped achieve pro-worker legislative victories and gains for working families that extend beyond the bargaining table.
Tricia and her family have found their home at SEIU 925. Her mother, a school bus driver, is an SEIU 925 member. You will often see her partner and two kids on picket lines and at union events.
Cindy Elizalde, Executive Vice President
Cindy’s upbringing in the agricultural region of Central Washington shaped her lifelong commitment to justice. She remembers how her parents would place her and her siblings in apple bins while they worked hard in the orchards because affordable child care wasn’t available to many communities.
Her childhood experiences motivated her to become an advocate for children, youth, and families. She went on to become an early learning professional, where she and her colleagues formed a union to address low pay and unjust policies. Cindy was an active member of SEIU 925 before joining as staff in 2009. Since then, she has organized more child care providers, bargained more labor contracts, and trained thousands of union members across the state on how to enforce workplace rights. She also served as the Member Resource Center Director and was elected Secretary-Treasurer, before being elected Executive Vice President.
Cindy has never forgotten her roots – as the proud daughter of hard-working immigrants, a rank-and-file union member, and now single parent to a wonderful 7-year old son, her lived experience drives her to make sure everyone’s voice is heard and respected.
Marilyn Botcheos, Secretary Treasurer
Marilyn felt drawn to SEIU 925 because of its education focus and deep roots in the women’s movement. She stayed because of SEIU 925’s focus on building strong rank-and-file leaders and its commitment to dismantling structural racism.
Her labor roots go back four generations: her great-grandmother led a workplace strike in Philadelphia more than a century ago, and both of her grandfathers fought for racial integration in their unions. From an early age, Marilyn understood that a strong union is the only way working people can wield power and affect real change. She knew she was able to go on family vacations, get braces, and visit the doctor because of the prior fights and sacrifices made by labor activists. Her love of history combined with her union upbringing fuels her drive to fight for a better future for all people.
As an organizer at SEIU Local 6, Marilyn worked with contract security officers to win their first city-wide, multi-employer contract. Since joining SEIU 925 in 2008, she has fought alongside child care providers, public defenders, and school district employees for respect and better working conditions. She created curriculum for staff and member leadership development, and served as the SEIU 925 ethics liaison. Marilyn currently leads the organizing work at the University of Washington, SEIU 925’s largest chapter.