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Volume 46 | Issue 1 | January 2004

People & Places

photo: Anna Morales
Anna Morales

Morales selected as new EO officer

Jay Levine
X-Press Editor

Dryden's new equal opportunity officer has a wide range of experiences in government service that will give her unique perspectives on issues at this Center and ideas on how to mesh Dryden's equal employment needs and concerns with those across the Agency.

As staff in the NASA Equal Opportunity Programs Office (Code E) look from the top to implement the office's role more uniformly across the Agency, Anna Morales' experiences can help them meet the challenges that effort will present. Besides assisting NASA with diversity management, she said she intends to look at ways of improving overall NASA culture from an equal-opportunity perspective.

A diversity plan is currently being developed at Dryden and has been distributed to Dryden's Equal Opportunity Board. In addition, copies will be routed to supervisors, managers and employees for suggestions and comment as to specific activities, Morales said. The plans essentially address a mix of awareness, training and technical assistance.

And Morales has a clear vision of what the Dryden equal opportunity office should do.

"We should be able to meet all Agency and federal mandates and requirements for EEO programs to include complaints processing, affirmative employment, diversity awareness and assistance in recruiting and hiring."

Equal-opportunity customers include those at the Center who are working with affirmative employment issues, who need information on diversity, employees seeking informal (complaint) counseling and supervisors and managers who seek EEO advice and assistance. Customers also include applicants for work at the Center, school representatives, other federal agencies, community members and partners such as the Air Force and the greater Los Angeles community.

Morales has a methodology for preparing for future equal-opportunity needs.

  "I'll read and research everything in the EO Office, review statistics and documents, and meet and receive input from diversity council members, Center managers and other EO staff members," she explained. "My approach is to communicate with people and not act unilaterally, and to be very well prepared before going forward with feedback, suggestions and recommendations. I will seek input from people and rely on managers for support in implementation."

Her background includes stints at the Department of Homeland Security Customs and Border Protection Bureau and government Equal Employment Opportunity positions in Los Angeles, Long Beach and Houston, Texas. She also has worked for the U.S. Justice Department Civil Rights Division and in the Immigration and Naturalization Service's Headquarters EEO Program.

Morales holds bachelor's and master's degrees in sociology from the University of California at Los Angeles, and is at work on a second master's degree from California State University, Dominguez Hills, in conflict management and negotiation that she intends to complete in about a year.