Sharon Murphy Palmer has served as president of AFT Connecticut since July 2003 and is a member of the AFT Teachers program and policy council. She has been an executive officer of the state federation since 1989, when she was elected to her first term as first vice president. Prior to becoming president, she held the office of executive vice president for two years.
Palmer is a member of the Waterford Federation of Classroom Teachers. She served as the local's president and treasurer for a number of years while teaching junior high school math and science.
Palmer is the first vice president of the Connecticut State AFL-CIO and vice president of the Southeastern Connecticut Central Labor Council. She also serves on a number of boards, commissions, task forces and committees, most with "ties to labor, progressive politics and the causes for which Palmer has spent most of her life working".
CPUSA 85th anniversary
About 100 labor and progressive activists packed the New Haven People's Center Dec. 5, 2004, to celebrate the 85th anniversary of the Communist Party USA at a reception hosted by the Connecticut Bureau of the People’s Weekly World.
Several state leaders in the movement for social change were honored, including Sharon Palmer, president of the American Federation of Teachers in Connecticut, Americo Santiago, program and policy director of DemocracyWorks, and the Rev. Scott Marks, New Haven director of the Connecticut Center for a New Economy.
Palmer, who coordinated labor’s activity in the 2nd Congressional district, behind James Sullivan, spoke of being depressed at first after election results came in, then becoming angry and finally determined to continue the fight against the anti-labor, anti-people policies of the right-wing. Santiago, who initiated a successful campaign to restore voting rights to ex-felons, said grassroots activism has never been more vital than it is today. Rev. Marks delivered a powerful call to continue organizing door-to-door and developing new leaders to bring about change.