Tony Michael has been selected as the new program leader for West Virginia University Extensions Institute for Labor Studies and Research (ILSR). He will assume the role Jan. 1.

Were fortunate to have someone of Tonys knowledge, experience and commitment to lead this program,said Dave Miller, WVU associate provost for Extension and public service.Tony has a keen understanding of the opportunities and challenges facing West Virginias organized labor movement, and he will take a progressive, collaborative approach to this role.

Michael, a West Virginia native from Talcott, joined ILSR as a graduate assistant in 2000 and accepted a full-time position with the program as a clinical instructor in 2002. He graduated summa cum laude with a bachelors degree in English from Bethany College before earning a masters in English at WVU . Michael also received a juris doctorate from WVU s College of Law.

The House of Labor is always looking for good people with a vision, fresh ideas and good communication skills,said Kenny Perdue, president of the West Virginia AFL -CIO.Tony Michael has the credentials and the heart for working class to make the labor movement an integral part of the community. There is a tremendous opportunity for progress in West Virginia, and I know that Tony will work well with us in changing the face of labor. Congratulations to Tony, and welcome aboard.

I am fortunate to be assuming this position at a time when we have progressive leadership within Extension, the University, organized labor and state government,Michael said.I hope to help strengthen the trade union movement while serving as a catalyst to establish long-term collaborative relationships to help us better address the needs of our communities.

Since joining ILSR , Michael has specialized in labor and employment law. He has coordinated a number of programs including the programs first labor and employment law conference. His work on privacy in the workplace was noted by an external review committee, and he was integral in developing the current draft of Extensions conflict of interest policy.

ILSR is a program of WVU Extension Services Community, Economic and Workforce Development unit.