We haven't necessarily cheered on all the moves of Orange County Employees Association head Nick Berardino, and you're just gonna have to find them (hint: churros!). But we have always respected the man for bringing true, populist labor politics to a county so hateful of organized labor that everyone declared war on striking Mexican orange pickers in 1936.
Berardino is retiring in July, and he was the topic I discussed this week in my every-Monday KCRW-FM 89.9 "Orange County Line" commentary.
Two other things Berardino should be given credit for that I mentioned: He made sure that OC labor is in good hands by picking as his successor Jennifer Muir, the former Orange County Register reporter we just profiled in our People Issue. She joins Orange County Labor Federation head Julio Pérez as the first-ever generation of homegrown labor bosses, which is just awesome. And then Berardino's most unlikely legacy: journalism via his early support for the Voice of OC, and a far better legacy than Aaron Kushner will ever leave here.