December 7, 2007 Volume 108 Number 23

NLRB Subregion 36 gets new chief officer

Linda Davidson, longtime agent in the Portland office of the National Labor Relations Board, has been promoted to head Subregion 36, which includes all of Oregon and Southwest Washington.

As officer-in-charge, Davidson, 46, oversees a staff of eight, including three attorneys, two field examiners, and three support staff.

A Portland native, Davidson took the federal civil service exam the year she graduated from Franklin High School — 1979. Before she was hired as a clerk typist at the NLRB Portland office, Davidson had never heard of the NLRB. Since then, it’s the only employer she has had.

The NLRB administers and enforces the National Labor Relations Act, conducting workplace elections to determine whether private-sector employees want a union, and investigating, prosecuting and remedying unfair labor practices by employers and unions.

In the 1980s, Davidson enrolled in the agency’s “upward mobility” program. The agency paid for her to take college coursework at Portland State University, Portland Community College and Mt. Hood Community College to satisfy the requirements to become a field examiner. She made the cut in 1990. As a field examiner, she visited all kinds of workplaces investigating unfair labor practices and overseeing union elections. Meeting people and hearing their stories, Davidson said, was what she enjoyed most.

There will be little of that in the new job, which she started Nov. 5. Instead, she’ll direct the work of the other staff. Davidson replaces Cathy Callahan, who left a year ago to take a job heading the Washington State Public Employment Relations Commission.

Davidson lives with her husband in Tigard, where she is an active member of Hall Boulevard Baptist Church. They have three grown children.

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