As the WNBA players union continues its negotiation with the league on a new collective bargaining agreement, its leadership is solidified for the foreseeable future.
The Los Angeles Sparks' Nneka Ogwumike was re-elected as WNBPA president, and the Connecticut Sun's Layshia Clarendon as first vice president earlier this week. They were initially elected to those roles in 2016, and their new terms are also for three years.
"This is a role that's afforded me a special opportunity to lead and to leave a legacy," Ogwumike said. She played collegiately for Stanford and was the WNBA's No. 1 draft pick in 2012 and league MVP in 2016, when the Sparks won the championship.
Clarendon led Cal to its only Women's Final Four appearance in 2013, and was the WNBA's No. 9 draft pick that year by Indiana. She also played for Atlanta before being traded to the Sun last year.
Among the union's advancements with Ogwumike and Clarendon in leadership roles is the creation of a Board of Advocates, which has provided support and perspective to the union from various successful business and entertainment professionals.
Ogwumike and Clarendon are also credited, along with union executive director Terri Jackson, for increasing player engagement with the union. The players voted last year to opt out early from their previous CBA. That didn't impact this season, but a new deal needs to be in place before next season.
Both Jackson and WNBA commissioner Cathy Engelbert have said that negotiations have been ongoing in a positive direction. It's expected that a deal may be done before the year is out, or soon in 2020.