Nov. 28, 2017 – Frank J. Santafede, a long-time NewsGuild leader, died on Nov. 15, 2017, following a brief illness. He was 80 years old.
Santafede served as president of the Providence, RI, Newspaper Guild from 1989 to 1997 and was administrator of the Philadelphia Newspaper Guild from 1997 to 2008.
In April 1995, while he was president of the Providence Local, the union’s International Executive Board awarded him the prestigious Guild Service Award. The Guild Reporter announcing the honor credited him with leading the local’s “most difficult round of bargaining in 20 years.”
Santafede was also instrumental in organizing The Newspaper Guild at the Worcester, Mass., Telegram & Gazette, the Guild Reporter said, where a unit of 142 editorial employees voted in favor of union representation in 1993.
“Frank believed the union mattered and he believed it had to be democratic,” said NewsGuild President Bernie Lunzer. “He brought idealism into the positions he assumed later in his career and made a huge difference in the lives of the Guild members he touched.”
In addition to his role in the union organizing campaign in Worcester, Santafede served as an on-call organizer, said Tim Schick, TNG-CWA administrative director. He also participated in the political caucuses within the Guild that brought forth a new generation of union leaders in the mid-1990s, Schick said.
Prior to his employment at the Providence Journal, where he worked for 23 years, he worked at newspapers in Texas and throughout New England.
He retired in 2008.
Santafede graduated from St. Anthony’s College in New York with a B.A. in theology. He served in the U.S. Air Force during the Vietnam War, where he earned a bronze star and achieved the rank of captain.
In his free time, he enjoyed traveling with his wife, Gail, throughout the U.S. and Italy.
Santafede is survived by his wife; three children, Valerie Koehler, Michael Moratti and Crystal Sliva; and seven grandchildren.
Funeral services will be held at the Padgett Funeral Home, 1107 State Highway 77, Upper Deerfield Township on Thursday, Nov. 30, at 11 a.m. Interment will take place at Union Grove Cemetery in Pittsgrove. Friends will be received at the funeral home from 9:30 – 11 a.m. Condolences can be sent to the family through the funeral home.