The longtime leader of Duval Teachers United, the union representing teachers and staff in Duval County schools, has retired.
Teresa Brady, who officially retired last week, had served as the union’s president for more than 20 years.
In a statement late Tuesday, Brady confirmed her retirement after more than 40 years in public education “and a rewarding 30-plus-year career with Duval Teachers United.”
“I have retired from my current position as president to spend more time with my family,” Brady’s statement reads. “It has been an honor to serve DTU, and I am confident the organization will continue to strengthen our public school system, enabling our members to provide the best education for all students in Duval County.”
The union’s Executive Board met Monday night to elect a new president. It also had to elect a new vice president with the retirement earlier this month of Ruby George from that position.
The names of the new officers will be announced Wednesday after union officials meet with Duval County school officials and alert union members, the news release said.
No reason for the retirements has been given, and the union has not answered repeated requests from Jacksonville Today for more information. But the union did release a statement Tuesday saying Brady did “a lot of great work for Duval County teachers, staff and students over the past 40 years. She has earned her retirement.”
“Under her leadership, DTU grew in membership and power,” the news release said.” She oversaw contract negotiations, led the efforts to pass a referendum to help fund Duval County Schools, worked with various community groups and brought local businesses to the table to support Duval’s students.”
Duval Teachers United has more than 6,500 members, or about 80% of eligible employees.
FBI and IRS agents visited the union’s office in San Marco in September, leaving with boxes of business materials, paperwork and computer equipment, according to News4Jax, a Jacksonville Today news partner. The FBI confirmed to Jacksonville Today that it was at the office in September but did not say what the investigation was about.
The retirement also comes as Florida places more restrictions on public sector employee unions. The law now prevents union dues from being deducted from workers’ paychecks, forcing its members to make separate payments. The law also requires unions to specify on membership forms that Florida is a “right-to-work” state and disclose the compensation of the five highest-paid officers and employees of each union.
The Florida Education Association, the United Faculty of Florida, the Alachua County teachers union and the University of Florida faculty union filed a federal lawsuit against the law only days after Gov. Ron DeSantis signed it into law, claiming it violates First Amendment, equal protection and contract rights.