Rostan June Movement of Movements 1

June Rostan is a long time community and labor activist in east Tennessee. She was born on May 8, 1947, in Valdese, North Carolina. Rostan received her B.A. from Maryville College in 1969 and her M.A. in Special Education from Appalachian State University in 1970. In the early 1970s Rostan went to Italy with the World Student Christian Federation. In Italy Rostan became involved in the labor and Women’s movements. Upon returning to the United States in 1974, Rostan began activist work with several organizations such as the Georgia Power Project and the Southern Appalachian Ministry before becoming the labor education program coordinator at Highlander Research and Education Center in New Market, TN, a position she held from 1977-1982. While at Highlander, Rostan began consulting with the Coal Employment Project, and in 1982 she became the health and safety coordinator for the organization. In 1987, Rostan left the Coal Employment Project and became the director of the Southern Empowerment Project. Rostan is currently a community organizer for the AFL-CIO. This interview focused on Rostan’s introduction to the Women’s movement and her work with the Coal Employment Project, which fought for rights for coal mining women.