Cherika Carter (she/her) was elected Secretary Treasurer of the Washington State Labor Council, AFL-CIO by its affiliated unions in October 2022 and was sworn in to begin her four-year term in January 2023. As Secretary Treasurer, Cherika is the chief financial officer of the council, taking charge of all financial documents and records, overseeing all receipts and expenditures, reporting on those activities to the WSLC Executive Board and convention. Along with WSLC President April Sims, she is part of the first leadership team of Black women to lead an AFL-CIO state federation.
Prior to her election, Cherika served as the WSLC’s Political and Strategic Campaigns Director since August 2019, developing and implementing the council’s strategic political plan, running the WSLC’s Labor Neighbor grassroots political action program, promoting member education campaigns on election issues, and helping recruit and elect pro-worker candidates at the direction of the WSLC officers and its affiliated unions via the Committee on Political Education (COPE). When she first joined the council’s staff in March 2018, Cherika was the WSLC’s Field Mobilization Director. She has advanced the WSLC’s Race and Labor work and led the WSLC’s Union Summer internship program to help educate and train the next generation of union activists and leaders.
The activist bug first bit Cherika in 2011 as a Member Political Organizer of UFCW 1059 in Columbus, Ohio. She was part of the team that overturned SB 5, Gov. John Kasich’s “Right-to-Work Is Wrong” bill, by taking it to a vote of the people of Ohio. After graduation from THE Ohio State University, Cherika went on to mobilize thousands of activists across the state to take action and win gains for working people as a Field Representative of the Ohio AFL-CIO.
Cherika is committed to fighting all forms of oppression, and advancing the freedoms of all working people. In the struggle for justice, she is guided by these words: Not needing to clutch for power. Not needing the light just to shine on me. I need to be one in the number as we stand against tyranny. We who believe in freedom cannot rest until it comes.
She is a resident of Tacoma.