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Rick Kisséll (pronounced “kiss-SELL”) has been active for more than 30 years in the peace, labor, and social justice movements. In 1991, he was named a Volunteer of the Year by the “Jobs With Peace” organization.

Kissell familyRick was born and raised in Milwaukee. He attended Milwaukee Public Schools, graduated from South Milwaukee High School, and later attended the University of Wisconsin – Madison.

Rick Kisséll became politically active after meeting former mayor Frank P. Zeidler while a high school student. (Zeidler served as Honorary Chairperson of the Kisséll Campaign Committee.)

Rick worked in Milwaukee Public Schools (Vieau and Fratney) from 1983 to 1988.

A professional Spanish interpreter since 1989, Rick Kisséll has worked in the federal, state, and municipal courts of southeastern Wisconsin. He has also interpreted across North America at conferences and conventions sponsored by The Newspaper Guild, the California AFL-CIO, Labor Notes magazine, Jobs With Justice, the Communications Workers of America, and the Service Employees’ International Union.

Rick has often been an instructor at the weekend orientation workshops of the Wisconsin Supreme Court for prospective court interpreters. He is a past president of the AFL-CIO Translators’ and Interpreters’ Guild (Local 32100 of The Newspaper Guild / Communications Workers of America) and of the Milwaukee chapter of LCLAA, the Labor Council for Latin American Advancement.

Rick Kisséll served on the board of the Wisconsin Fair Trade Coalition, the movement of labor and community groups which led the opposition to the adoption by Congress of the North American Free Trade Agreement. (NAFTA was shepherded through the House of Representatives by then-Congressman Rahm Emanuel and signed into law by President Clinton in 1993.)

Rick Kisséll has been married since 1989 to longtime MPS kindegarten teacher Annie Espinoza. Annie Espinoza is a past vice-president of the Milwaukee Kindergarten Associaton and has taught CCD at St. Anthony’s. Their daughter René attended Rufus King High School, and was a Chancellor’s Scholar at the University of Wisconsin – Madison. She received her Master's degree from the University of California - Berkeley in 2014 and is currently working on her PhD there in Education Policy.

Rick and Annie's son Paul is about to graduate from Reagan International Baccalaureate High School.

Click here for a brief but amusing little video cartoon from the United Food and Commercial Workers’ union on “the two party system.” It’s narrated by Kiefer Sutherland and his grandfather, Tommy Douglas, the founder of Canada’s system of socialized medicine.