2015 Scholarships Awarded to Irvine and Sabeh-Ayoun


The Ohio Council 8 Executive Board is pleased to announce that Montgomery Irvine has been awarded the Patricia Moss Scholarship and Mohamed Sabeh-Ayoun has been awarded the Jesse Johnson Scholarship as part of the Ohio Council 8 Family Scholarship program.

Montgomery is the daughter of Jerry Irvine who is Chapter Chairman of AFSCME Local 101-19, which represents Greene County Highway Engineer’s Office employees.

A graduate of Xenia High School, Montgomery was as a motivated student who achieved an outstanding academic record. In addition she participated in many school and community activities including serving as president of the student council at the high school.

In her winning essay, Montgomery saw firsthand the difference between a union and non-union workplace. Her mother Robin, is also a public employee, but without union representation. “She once went four years without a pay raise. And with no voice on the job, her working conditions and hours can be changed by her employer at any time.”

She will be attending Defiance College this fall and plans to become a nurse specializing in Pediatric Oncology.

The 2015 men’s scholarship winner, Mohamed Sabeh-Ayoun, is the son of 20-year AFSCME Local 232 member Sawsan Srouji. An active member of the union representing Cincinnati Public School employees, he has been a member since he began with the board of education in 1995.

Mohamed graduated from Oak Hills High School, where he was an active student with a strong academic record who was respected by his classmates and teachers.

In his winning essay, Mohamed recounted lessons he learned through his family’s 20-year association with AFSCME. “I remember going to union meetings as a child and participating in many AFSCME activities.”

As a high school student he took the lead and volunteered to help the union build its first web page. On March 21,2012, he completed the task and afscmelocal232.org was on line. Since then he has been the local union’s web master.

He will be attending The Ohio State University in the fall where he plans on becoming a doctor.

The 2015 AFSCME Ohio Council 8 Scholarships are named in honor of Patricia Moss and Jesse Johnson.

A graduate of Ohio University, Patricia Moss began her career as a public employee in 1969, when she joined the Cuyahoga County Welfare Department.

In 1972, Moss was hired as a staff representative for Council 78. She earned her law degree and was admitted to the Ohio bar in 1981. In 1987 she became Cleveland Regional Director.

Then in 1991, the delegates to Ohio Council 8’s ninth biennial convention elected her First Vice President.

With the retirement of President William T. Endsley in 2001, Moss became the first woman to serve as Ohio Council 8 President. She retired in 2007.

Jesse Johnson embodies AFSCME’s fighting spirit in his 28-year career as a member, on Council 8 staff, and his service on the Ohio AFSCME Care Plan.

In 1956, Johnson was hired as an X-ray technician at Sunny Acres, Cuyahoga County’s tuberculosis hospital, where he was paid $1.25 per hour.

Fed up with no benefits and low pay, Johnson joined more than 150 Sunny Acres Hospital workers to stage a successful 75-day strike to win union recognition.

A proven leader, Johnson worked his way up through the ranks and was elected President of AFSCME Local 1746, which represented Cuyahoga County workers. In 1970, he joined the staff of AFSCME District Council 78, which represented northeastern Ohio public employees. By 1982 he was promoted to Regional Director of the Cleveland Region.

In 1987, Johnson left Council 8 to become Executive Director for the Ohio AFSCME Care Plan where he worked to expand benefits and make the plan available to Council 8 member across the state. Johnson retired in 1998.

Ohio Council 8 First Vice President Harold Mitchell, chairperson of the executive board committee that reviews the scholarship applications, wished Montgomery and Mohamed the best of luck pursuing their higher education goals.

In addition to Mitchell, the scholarship committee included AFSCME Cleveland Regional Vice President Julie Albers, At-Large Vice President Asyia Haile, and Trustee Kim Gaines.


Ayoun_Crop    Irvine

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