Gerard has been a PEF Member since 1996 and strong activist for close to 15 years. He has served in PEF positions of Treasurer and Assistant Council Leader in local division He has served three terms (9 years) on the PEF Executive Board Community and Political Activist. In the true spirit of a unionist for the three terms he has served as an Executive Board representative and on the Labor Management committee he has never submitted an expense request to PEF for any meetings he has attended. Gerard is a valued member of PEF OMH Labor Management Board under three Administrations.
He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Hunter College in 1982 with a Major in Political Science and received his MSW from Fordham University in 1993. He has been Licensed Clinical Social Worker since 1993 and has worked extensible in DOCCS Facilities since 1996. Gerard works hand in hand with DOCCS and OMH staff to forge better working conditions and to promote unionism. He is a highly respected leader among his peers and coworkers alike.
Mr. Riconda risked his career in social work to protect the vulnerable children and families when he became a whistleblower in NYC Child Welfare Administration. He was later exonerated. At that time supervisors were preventing their subordinates from reporting incidents of child abuse even though they were mandated reporters. These actions were later confirmed in a New York Times article. Mandated reporting is now an enforceable law on the books.
Gerard has worked as a Professional Campaign Consultant and managed Congressional, Senatorial and Judicial Campaigns. He is a former Board Member for the Bronx Chapter of the New York Urban League and former President of Thomas Paine Independent Democratic Club. In addition, He was the former Vice Chair of the Bronx Committee of Democratic Voters. Gerard was part of the Reform Movement that brought down corrupt political bosses in Bronx County during the 1980s. He was also former staffer for the NYS Assembly and Senate.
Gerard currently is on the Department of Corrections Critical Incident Stress Team and a volunteer for the Red Cross Disaster Mental Health Relief Team. He has worked as an editor, writer and publisher of local community newspaper. He is Local church volunteer and volunteer for the developmentally disabled in the Bronx. He was also former Committee Chairman of local BSA Troop.
Gerard has had extensive experience both in PEF and the private sector and his valuable experience has paved the way for him to be an excellent Region 9 Regional Coordinator.