EmblemHealth and LaborPress Presents: Heroes of Labor 2020 – COVID-19 Edition

Liberty Island overlooking Manhattan Skyline on a bright summer day

EmblemHealth and LaborPress are honored to present the 9th Annual Heroes of Labor Awards to individuals who go beyond the call of duty. In partnership with LaborPress, EmblemHealth will host a special series of events honoring heroes who helped lead, protect, rebuild and care for New York during the COVID-19 pandemic. We salute the unions who give their time and energy in an extraordinary manner to advocate for others, serve their community with compassion, strength of character, and bravery.

In partnership with Food Merchants, we have prepared a menu for you to enjoy at home during our event. Each recipe is under 10 steps, and the recommended ingredients are all optional. The drink options are intended for consumption by those 21 and older. Drink responsibly. If you are interested in working with Food Merchants for your future events, please visit foodmerchantscatering.com


Register below today.


Honoring our union partners

Judy Gonzalez,
New York State Nurses Association
Judy Sheridan-Gonzalez went to the Helene Fuld College of Nursing (1975) for her LPN and became a registered nurse after graduating from CUNY's Borough of Manhattan Community College (1980).

Before working as a nurse, and eventually becoming the president of NYSNA, Sheridan-Gonzalez was a community organizer at the Model Cities Program, an initiative that works to solve the problems of urban poverty.

Sheridan-Gonzalez put her skills as an organizer to work at NYSNA, after the organization went from being a professional association and later became a union in 2011. In 2013, she became the president of NYSNA and the group became more active in legislation, staffing, pension and social justice issues.

Frank Proscia,
MD, Doctors Council
Frank Proscia, M.D., is President of Doctors Council SEIU, the nation's oldest union for attending physicians and dentists.

Proscia completed his residency and training at UMDNJ-NJMS, and has been a physician for 30 years. A psychiatrist, and former Inpatient Unit Chief with Mount Sinai School of Medicine at the New York City Health + Hospitals/Queens, Proscia has been an active member of Doctors Council for nearly 20 years and President since 2014.

Proscia was named to City & State 100 most powerful New Yorkers in Health, is on the national SEIU Healthcare Division Leadership Board, is a Vice Chair of the Municipal Labor Committee and was Chair of the New York City Labor Unions' Ebola Response Committee.

Born and raised in New York, Proscia is a husband, father, and relatively new grandfather, and in his spare time, a volunteer Firefighter for nearly 20 years.

Carmen Charles,
Local 420 DC 37 AFSCME
Carmen Charles is President of the New York City Municipal Hospitals Employees Union, Local 420, DC37, AFSCME. The union represents healthcare workers in NYC Health + Hospitals (H+H), the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner (OCME), the Department of Corrections (DOC) and the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH). Charles negotiates on behalf of her members across the five boroughs who work in 11 acute hospitals, 5 long-term care facilities, 500+ network of clinics, Riker’s Island and the city morgues.

Charles is a graduate of the Cornell University’s Institute of Labor and Industrial Relations’ Leadership Program. She is currently serving her 6th term as President of AFSCME Local 420, as well as Vice President and Executive Board member of District Council 37. As a DC37 Vice President, she chairs the Council’s Women’s Committee and Caribbean Heritage Committee.

In addition, before becoming president, she served as the 2nd Vice President of the local, as Vice Chapter Chair (Coler Hospital Chapter) and Shop steward (Coler Hospital). Also, prior to working as in the public hospital system, she worked as a bank secretary. However, before coming to the US, she worked briefly in the Guyana public service (Ministry of Agriculture). Her current citywide title is Medical/Surgical Technician, but she started at Coler Hospital as a Nurse’s Aide.

Over the past 17 years as President of Local 420 AFSCME, she has successfully lobbied the City of New York to keep public hospitals open, negotiated wage increases, job upgrades, improved working conditions and other benefits for her members.