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Old 11-06-2009, 09:40 AM   #3  
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From the incoming MEC chair (and current member of the Negotiating Committee):

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November 5, 2009

Dear Fellow Pilots:

While I donít take office until January 1, I would like to address todayís recall by the MEC of the Negotiating Committee Chairman and a Negotiating Committee member. The MEC replaced these gentlemen by electing Captain Jay Heppner to the position of Negotiating Committee Chairman and First Officer Phil Otis to the member position.

Regardless of your viewpoint on this action, I reaffirm the pilotsí resolve for an industry leading contract and I will execute upon that resolve with Jay, Phil and Brad Hunnewell, who is currently on the Committee. I welcome Jay and Phil to their new positions, and I look forward to a constructive and productive working relationship. There are no thanks enough for the personal and family sacrifices made by the gentlemen serving on the Negotiating Committee as previously constituted for many years of service in a thankless job, and the pilot group is better off for their having served.

I am committed to having the strongest possible negotiating team to serve the pilots of United Airlines. With that in mind, to help the new members gain experience with negotiations upon joining our ongoing Section 6 negotiations midstream, beginning January 1 my first order of business as your incoming MEC Chairman will be to assign additional professional negotiators to our contract negotiation process. The team will thus comprise the pilot members of the Negotiating Committee working side by side with the best possible attorneys with specialized backgrounds in airline contracts.

As I have extensive Negotiating Committee experience, and have served in all positions of the Committee inside and outside of Section 6, beginning in January the entire Committee of both pilot and professional negotiators will be overseen by me, as your MEC Chairman and ad-hoc member of the Negotiating Committee, as well as by the MEC. Once new committee members gain experience, an assessment will be made as to the best negotiating methodology going forward.

We all recognize the need to put an end to working under the 2003 contract, which was negotiated not by the Negotiating Committee but by a Bankruptcy Committee with no negotiating background created by the then Master Chairman.

The process of MEC elections, whether Officer or Committee elections, is one where, after the vote is counted, we need to accept the outcome as decided by the members of the MEC that you elect as Council Officers and move on in unity. I am asking each of you to engage and to assist your fellow pilots in finding solutions in a constructive manner.

There is much to gain by focusing all of our collective energy on the task at hand. Moving our pilot group forward toward a productive and successful future is my primary focus and I ask every one of you to join me in this effort. True unity does not exclude any pilot on the property or on furlough. We are all United pilots and need to work as a team regardless of our differences of opinion. To do otherwise gives the Company potential power they do not merit.

Fraternally and in Unity,

Captain Wendy Morse
MEC Chairman - Elect