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Ontario English Catholic Teachers

First Vice-President - Warren Grafton

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Before he studied to be a teacher, Warren Grafton studied chemistry.

But sitting alone in a quality control lab wasn’t the future he’d envisioned, so he became an educational assistant and then a teacher.

In 1996, he worked for the Waterloo Catholic School Board as an itinerant teacher for the visually impaired, something he found really rewarding. He enjoyed working with the same kids year after year, and getting to see them progress.

When a staff rep position came up for hearing/special education, he took it.

Grafton was a member of the Waterloo Unit committee that organized teachers’ picket schedules during the Bill 160 protests in 1997. He also served as the local OECTA office manager and behind-the-scenes organizer. The experience cemented his interest in, and commitment to, the Association.

“The role [of an executive member] is to represent teachers in the classroom and to know what their concerns are,” says Grafton. “Members are interested and willing to work on behalf of the Association but they really need some human contact.”

Grafton says, “People are more concerned about how many dollars they take home than broader social issues.” He says as teachers, “We have to have a conversation about what makes a fair and just society.”

Having formerly served as Treasurer on the Provincial Executive, Grafton now fills the role of First-Vice President.

When he’s not working, Grafton enjoys karate (he and his wife are second-degree karate black belts) and ballroom dancing.

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