Michael Wasser

Michael Wasser works for the Department for Professional Employees, AFL-CIO (DPE) as the assistant to the president and legislative director. DPE is a coalition of 24 national unions representing more than four million professional, technical, and highly-skilled workers. At DPE, Michael is responsible for conducting outreach to labor and non-labor organizations, representing DPE before Congress on issues important to professional and technical workers, and working with affiliate unions to identify and advance issues important to professional and technical workers.

Prior to joining DPE, Michael worked for six years at Jobs With Justice (and, previous to its merger, American Rights at Work), serving most recently as senior policy analyst. Michael produced original research and led the organization’s federal policy strategy, monitoring developments related to the workplace and serving as the primary liaison to congressional offices and federal agencies. Michael has been quoted in or written for a number of media outlets, including The Washington Post, The Hill, Huffington Post, and NPR. He also has been published in the Nevada Law Journal.

Michael is a graduate of the Schreyer Honors College at the Pennsylvania State University, with a bachelor’s degree in labor studies and employment relations and a master’s degree in human resources and employment relations. Michael is an adjunct professor of labor and employment relations at Penn State.

Vice President

Brandie Laughner

Brandie Laughner is a current undergraduate student at Pennsylvania State University, World Campus. Her current educational path includes:

  • Labor and Human Resources (LHR_BS)
  • Psychology- Business Path (PSY_BS)

Brandie is also enrolled as an integrated undergraduate/graduate program student, working toward her MPS in Human Resources and Employment Relations (HRER) with Pennsylvania State University, World Campus.


Kimberly Eyssen

Kimberly Eyssen is currently a Payroll/HR Specialist at the Research Foundation for Mental Hygiene (RFMH), based in Albany, NY. Kimberly has over 6 years of experience in the human resources field in a diverse range of sectors including retail, public university systems, and non-profit organizations. Before her work as a Payroll/HR Specialist with RFMH, Kimberly worked as an HR Associate/Analyst with the State University of New York System Administration Office, and a Team Member Services Admin at Whole Foods Market.

Kimberly’s professional experience includes payroll/benefits administration, HR compliance, training and development, and recruitment. Kimberly holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the State University of New York at Albany and is currently a graduate student at Penn State World Campus working toward her Master of Professional Studies in Human Resources and Employment Relations and a graduate certificate in Organization Development Essentials.


Antone Aboud

Antone Aboud, Ph.D. is a Professor of Practice at the School of Labor and Employment Relations at Penn State. He is also the Online Program Team Leader. In that capacity, he is not only involved in the daily management of the online programs but also actively involved in course creation and revision processes as well as the School’s Outreach Program.

Antone’s graduate degree is in Collective Bargaining, Labor Law and Labor History from the ILR School at Cornell. Originally he worked full-time in SUNY’s Office of Faculty and Staff Relations, became a faculty member at SUNY (Utica/Rome and Potsdam) and then at St. Francis College. In those capacities, he taught Labor Relations, HR Management, Labor Law, Management Theory and Organizational Behavior. He also served as a labor arbitrator for several years, and as a chief labor negotiator for both unions and employers.

In the mid-1980’s he created his own consulting firm, focusing primarily on management and supervisory training, risk management and workplace investigations. He worked in that capacity until 2013. He has authored training programs that have been taught in more than 40 states as well as the District of Columbia. Most recently he has concentrated substantial effort in helping clients to identify critical changes in organizational culture that will allow quality management initiatives to flourish.