Speaking with One Voice: Gaining the Competitive Edge
March 13 - 15, 2018
The symposium was a live virtual event running through the course of three days, and it is designed to connect all stakeholders in the transportation community to innovative perspectives and thought leaders. The 2018 theme — “Speaking with One Voice: Gaining the Competitive Edge” — focused attention to the significant business benefits that are achieved when civil rights is addressed as an integrated component of planning and implementation in all business operations. The topics covered will equip participants with information and proven strategies to achieve leading-edge outcomes. When inclusion and equity is championed from solution-based perspectives, the end result is an improved and sustainable transportation system with world-class implications.
Session 1: Introduction and Welcome to the 2018 Civil Rights Virtual Symposium (1:00 p.m. - 1:20 p.m.)
Overview: The goal of this session is to welcome participants, provide an overview of civil rights in transportation, and describe the topics to be covered in the symposium.
- Charles E. James, Sr., Director, Departmental Office of Civil Rights
Session 2: Lessons from Beavercreek (CANCELED)
Session 3: What are the Small Business Transportation Resource Centers (SBTRCs) and why is that important to know? (1:30 p.m. - 2:30 p.m.)
Overview: The United States Department of Transportation (USDOT), Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization’s (OSDBU) mission is to ensure small business policies and goals of the Secretary of Transportation are implemented in a fair, efficient, and effective manner. This session will discuss how the SBTRCs carry out programs that assist small and disadvantaged businesses in successfully competing for transportation-related contracts and subcontracts by developing support mechanisms, including management and technical services, that enables small and disadvantaged businesses to take advantage of those business opportunities and to plan to carry out the above purposes. The presenters will explore how recipients can partner with regional SBTRCs to maximize the use of programs and services.
- Michelle Harris, Regional Assistance Division (RAD) Manager, USDOT, OSDBU
Session 4: Leading to Gain the Competitive Edge (2:45 p.m. - 3:45 p.m.)
Overview: OPM has identified five executive core qualifications (ECQs), which describe the competencies needed to develop and maintain a culture that serves customers, achieves results, and strengthens teams and coalitions. This session will examine some of these competencies to show how effective leaders, at all levels of management, lead the way in diversity and inclusion in a way that can become a true competitive advantage for their organization.
- Amanda Seese, Chief of Staff, Office of Inspector General, USDOT
- Eileen Ennis, Assistant Inspector General for Administration and Management, USDOT
- Darin Tuggle, Attorney, Office of Inspector General, USDOT
Session 5: A Small Business Capacity Building Forum (10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.)
Overview: Transportation and infrastructure are key components that promote economic empowerment, and small businesses have an important role to play in strengthening the nation’s transportation and infrastructure. To make these points, this session will focus on programs that build small business capacity and on provisions which can help expand the small business role. Additionally, participants will learn how surety bonding can be an empowerment tool and how to get the capital and procurement assistance they need to be successful.
- Tony Arps, Project Director, USDOT Gulf Region Small Business Transportation Resource Center (SBTRC)
- Adriana Clark, Project Director, USDOT Southeast Region Small Business Transportation Resource Center (SBTRC)
- Kaye Gantt, Executive Director, USDOT South Atlantic Region Small Business Transportation Resource Center (SBTRC)
Session 6: “How May I Help You?”: Recognizing and Providing Reasonable Accommodations (1:15 p.m. - 2:15 p.m.)
Overview: This session provides a guide of how the reasonable accommodation works. DOT is committed to complying with civil rights laws that require the provision of accommodations to applicants and employees with disabilities to ensure equal employment opportunity. It includes important information from the Rehabilitation Act, Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and ADA Amendments Act of 2008.
Moderator: Emiliano Lopez, Chief Operating Officer, Office of Civil Rights, Federal Highway Administration (FHWA)
Annette Carr, Accommodations Analyst, Disability Resource Center (DRC), USDOT
Lisa Kosh, Accommodations Analyst, Disability Resource Center (DRC), USDOT
Rosanne Goodwill, Director, Civil Rights, Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA)
Session 7: Public Involvement - Effectively Serving and Understanding all Communities (2:30 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.)
Overview: The environment in which our nation’s transportation systems operate can be both dynamic and challenging. Transportation leaders are proactively engaging with stakeholders to achieve better outcomes. The objective of this session is to provide an overview of effective practices, tools, communication techniques, and success stories that highlight how leaders proactively understand the communities they serve and manage these important relationships.
Moderator: Yvette Rivera, Associate Director, Departmental Office of Civil Rights (DOCR), USDOT
- Gloria Jeff, Project Director, Minnesota Department of Transportation
Alex Karner, Professor, The University of Texas at Austin
Session 8: Why Discussing Harassment Matters (10:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.)
Overview: For victims of harassment, choosing to report it is often a difficult decision. They can choose either to address it on the spot or talk about it later. Two thought leaders will discuss how a victim can handle this difficult work situation. This session will also explore the benefits, for the individual and the organization, when harassment is confronted.
Moderator: Beverly Onwubere, Associate Director, Departmental Office of Civil Rights (DOCR), USDOT
Tammy Van Keuren, Executive Director, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)
Fern Kaufmann, Center for Alternative Dispute Resolution (CADR), Office of the Secretary (OST), USDOT
Session 9: Recruitment and Hiring: “I” is for… (11:15 a.m. - 12:15 p.m.)
Overview: OPM’s Inclusive Diversity Strategic Plan calls for a strategy that “involves fostering the diversity of the potential applicant pool throughout all stages of the employee life-cycle.” Organizations that are most effective in implementing this strategy are ones in which leaders show real commitment by directing attention and resources to attract applicants that reflects the diversity of our society. Beyond that, organizations must look for ways to leverage performance expectation, employee resource groups, and training as a means to equip and encourage managers to be successful in the hiring process. However, getting diverse candidates to the interview is not enough. An applicant—whether a new hire or current employee competing for a promotion—must be able to showcase, in a clear and compelling fashion, the skills and experiences that make him or her most qualified for the position.
Moderator: Jonathan Ocana, Equal Opportunity Specialist, Departmental Office of Civil Rights (DOCR), USDOT
- Yvette Rivera, Associate Director, Departmental Office of Civil Rights (DOCR), USDOT
- Stanley J. (Stan) Hammonds, Lead Trainer, Departmental Office of Civil Rights (DOCR), USDOT
Session 10: Inclusion and Equity from the Perspective of State and Local Transportation Entities (1:30 p.m. - 2:30 p.m.)
Overview: Transportation and infrastructure play a vital part in achieving and maintaining prosperity. It is vital that all involved parties, whether State agencies or local transportation agencies, ensure transportation and infrastructure projects provide the benefits and promises of these investments to all members of the public. It is a core tenet of fairness, but more importantly our values, that public resources serve the public good. To do so, it is necessary to ensure equity and access is considered in transportation and infrastructure projects. Whether during the development and planning phase, or the operation phase, incorporating equity and access, early and throughout, will guarantee a stronger result for state agencies and local transportation agencies. It is the goal of this session to provide participants with low-cost, high-return practices and techniques, rooted in the Americans with Disabilities Act and Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, that result in equity and access for the public.
Moderator: Jonathan Klein, National Team Lead, Airport Disability Compliance Program, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)
Katherine Delaney, Community Planner, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)
Steve Mayers, Airport Director, Customer Experience and ADA Coordinator, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL)
Stephanie Ward, Manager, Aviation Planning, Mead & Hunt
Session 11: Show Them the Money! The DBE Program’s Prompt Payment Requirements (2:45 p.m. - 3:45 p.m.)
Overview: Experts from the Federal Aviation Administration, Federal Highway Administration, and Federal Transit Administration will provide an overview, as well as details, about the DBE Program’s Prompt Payment requirements. Topics covered will include contract clauses, retainage options, timing, monitoring, and compliance. Recipients and business owners of all knowledge/experience levels will walk away with new information.
Moderator: Aarathi D. Haig, J.D., EEO Specialist, Departmental Office of Civil Rights (DOCR), USDOT
- Janine Ashe, Civil Rights Policy & Regulations Specialist, Federal Highway Administration (FHWA)
- Janelle Hinton, Equal Opportunity Specialist, Federal Transit Administration (FTA)
- Alexander Horton, DBE/ACDBE Compliance Specialist, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)