Minority Leadership Institute

Roots of the MLI
The MLI grew out of the work of CWA's Committee on Civil Rights and Equity. In 1973, responding to convention discussion on the concerns of women and minority members, the Executive Board authorized two study committees to come up recommendations for increasing the involvement of women and minorities in our union. As a result of this work, the executive Board established the union's first Committee on Civil Rights and Equity and adopted a program to develop CWA Committees on Civil Rights and Equity at the local level.

In 1983, in response to recommendations by the National COE for training opportunities directed to minorities, the Executive Board established the MLI, a three week intensive study program. The MLI has been held annually since 1983.

The CWA Minorities Leadership Institute
The Minorities Leadership Institute (MLI) is an intensive 3-week study program dedicated to increasing the involvement of minorities at all levels of the union.

Since 1983, over 100 men and women of CWA have completed the MLI training. Participants have sharpened their leadership skills, strengthened their commitment to trade unionism, and shared unforgettable moments with each other.

The MLI Program
In 21 days of study and hands on experience, MLI participants receive rigorous training in leadership development workplace issues, labor economics, labor law and communications.

Course offerings include:

  • Labor history
  • Union leadership
  • Organizing
  • Our core union values
  • Effective writing and speaking
  • Civil rights and the labor movement
  • Collective bargaining
  • Teaching union activists
  • Communicating with computers
  • International labor issues

Who is Eligible?
Local union minority activists who have exhibited leadership qualities and a dedication to union work.