Kucera, who was attending the event in her her role as editor and reporter for Workday Minnesota, appeared to be caught off-guard when Jobs Now Coalition Director Kris Jacobs called out her name. Later, Kucera confirmed that she had been completely surprised by the announcement.
In her introductory remarks, Kris Jacobs described Kucera as \”a dedicated champion of working people, including immigrants and other vulnerable workers, not just in Minnesota and the U.S., but around the world. For being our teacher and our leader and our friend, Barb Kucera, you are a working class hero.\”
Kucera said she would like to accept the award on behalf of \”…the regular folks who are out there everyday. It\’s a privilege to get a chance to tell their stories and to occasionally show a spotlight on them. This award gives me more oomph to go out there and keep fighting.\”
In addition to the award, which includes the inscription, \”Thank you for your leadership and contributions in the cause of economic opportunity for Minnesota¹s workers,\” Kucera was presented with a custom designed clip-board with a collage of other working class heroes such as Caesar Chavez and Mother Jones.
Other 2007 recipients of the Working Class Hero included Brian Rusche with the Joint Religious Legislative Coalition, Becky and Gene Lourey with the Namadji Research Corporation, and Mary Kay Kennedy and Rick Cardenas with the organization Advocating Change Together.
Video by Randy Croce
Jobs Now, a broad-based coalition of over 100 member organizations is the largest employment policy group of its kind in the United States.
For more information on the Jobs Now Coalition, visit