50. April Verrett
April Verrett heads Local 2015 of the Service Employees International Union, a huge local representing 380,000 long-term care workers – it’s the biggest local in California, by far, and the largest in the nation. Verrett took over in early 2019, replacing Laphonza Butler, a popular labor leader credited with a major role in getting California’s hourly minimum wage increased. Butler, who went to Ace Smith’s (No. 63) campaign firm, is a hard act to follow, but Verrett is doing just fine. Verrett earlier served as Local 2015’s executive vice president, and before that she was executive veep of the 92,000-worker HCII, SEIU’s health care operation in Illinois and Indiana, which also serves Missouri and Kansas. Long-term health care definitely is a growth industry: In California alone, the population of older adults is expected to double between 2015 and 2030 and about half of older adults are in need of assistance for their daily activities.
Updated Aug. 11, 2020