NASA Recognizes Conflict Resolution Day on October 18, 2018

Conflict Resolution Day, officially celebrated this year on October 18, 2018, is an internationally recognized event created by the Association for Conflict Resolution to promote awareness of the many creative and proactive methods for resolving and managing conflicts. At NASA, each Center holds commemorations and conducts educational awareness events throughout the month of October. These events highlight NASA’s commitment to resolving conflicts at the earliest possible stage.

Each Center leverages this time of the year to promote awareness and use of early and peaceful means of resolving workplace conflicts such as Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR), Ombudsman Program, Conflict Resolution Program, Anti-Harassment Program, Process for Handling Dissenting Opinions, NASA Safety Reporting System, Employee Assistance Program, Negotiated Grievance Process, Administrative Grievance Process and Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO).

For Conflict Resolution Month events at each Center, please visit:

Ames Research Center:
Telephone: (650) 604-0783

Armstrong Flight Research Center:
Telephone: (661) 276-3033

Glenn Research Center:
Telephone: (216) 433-2463

Goddard Space Flight Center:
Telephone: (301) 286-7348

Telephone: (202) 358-1228

Johnson Space Center:
Telephone: (281) 483-0603

Kennedy Space Center:
Telephone: (321) 867 9171

Langley Research Center:
Telephone: (757) 864-4240

Marshall Space Flight Center:
Telephone: (256) 544-6764

NASA Shared Services Center/Stennis Space Center:
Telephone: (228) 688-2210

Alternative Dispute Resolution Resolves Issues Quickly and Effectively

NASA is committed to Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) to resolve workplace disputes as early as possible and to provide a safe and inclusive environment for constructive communication. No matter how effective an office is, sometimes there are misunderstandings, conflicts, or differences of opinion. The Office of Diversity and Equal Opportunity (ODEO) champions ADR as a way of quickly addressing and resolving issues.

ODEO believes that with an inclusive, safe, and welcoming environment every employee will be better able to focus on attaining their full potential, with the motivation to go the extra mile in support of NASA’s vision and mission.

NASA Attends Society of Asian Scientists and Engineers Conference and Career Fair

The Society of Asian Scientists and Engineers (SASE) National Conference and STEM Career Fair is the largest conference and career fair for Asian Americans in the United States, with over 3,000 students and professionals and representation from over 100 universities nationwide.

NASA attended SASE again this year, talking with hundreds of students and presenting a workshop on NASA internship opportunities. In the words of participant Lien Moore, from Marshall Space Flight Center, “I just want to say thank you for the opportunity to represent NASA and MSFC at SASE 2018. It was so much larger than the last time I attended (maybe 2-3 years ago). The students’ interest in working at NASA is as strong as ever! I enjoyed spending time with all you and appreciate the chance to taste Chicago deep dish pizza with some of you! I had a lot of fun!”

The George Washington University’s Women’s Leadership Program to Feature NASA’s Modern Figures

NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope trained its razor-sharp eye on one of the universe’s most stately and photogenic galaxies, the Sombrero galaxy, Messier 104. The galaxy’s hallmark is a brilliant white, bulbous core encircled by the thick dust lanes comprising the spiral structure of the galaxy. As seen from Earth, the galaxy is tilted nearly edge-on. This brilliant galaxy was named the Sombrero because of its resemblance to the broad rim and high-topped Mexican hat.

NASA’s Modern Figures story, with an emphasis on elevating women in Government, will be featured at the Women’s Leadership Program: Strategies for Accelerating Impact, Influence and Advancement, at the George Washington University from October 24-26. The program presented by GWU’s Center for Excellence in Public Leadership is a joint effort by women leaders for women leaders, and will provide new strategies and tactics for women to take the lead and succeed at higher levels in their organizations.

This breakthrough women’s leadership program features highly respected guest speakers, including a panel “From Hidden Figures to Modern Figures,” featuring the following:

•Julie Williams-Byrd, Acting Chief Technologist at NASA Langley Research Center
•Michelle Ferebee, Deputy Director for Strategy in the Aeronautics Research Directorate
at NASA Langley Research Center
•Dr. Wanda Peters, Deputy Director for Planning and Business Management in the Flight Projects at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

While gender diversity is recognized as a hallmark of the most successful organizations, studies—including “Women Rising: the Unseen Barriers” reported in HBR—reveal that gender bias continues to exist in most organizations.

Whatever the organizational climate, there are key actions and behaviors women can take to lead successfully and improve workplace engagement, culture, and operational execution. Participants will have the opportunity to network and build community with the speakers and participating women leaders.

“The skills, habits, and nuances learned in this program will begin to move the needle in gender equity and create better leaders,” says Leslie Grossman, Senior Fellow and Executive Coach at GWU Center for Excellence in Public Leadership, and Faculty Director of the program.
The program tackles such topics as building trusted relationships and influential networks, the mindfulness of confidence, workplace harassment, and emotional intelligence as a pathway to leadership.

The three-day program will take place on GW’s Washington, D.C. campus. There are a few more spaces for qualified candidates. For more information about GW’s Women’s Leadership Program:

To apply, please visit:

Congratulations to NASA Employee Parimal Kopardekar and his Team for their Selection for a Sammie Award

NASA employee Parimal Kopardekar and his team have been selected for a Sammie award, recognizing their exceptional work on a UAV traffic management system. See article at:

The Samuel J. Heyman Service to America awards (nicknamed the “Sammies”) are known as the “Oscar” awards for government service – they are a highly respected honor conferred after an extremely vigorous selection process. Named for the Partnership for Public Service’s late founder who was inspired by President Kennedy’s call to serve in 1963, these awards align with his vision of a dynamic and innovative federal workforce that meets the needs of the American people.

An award winner is selected for each of the following categories:
• Federal Employee of the Year
• Career Achievement
• Homeland Security and Law Enforcement
• Management Excellence
• National Security and International Affairs
• Promising Innovations
• Science and Environment

For each category, nominees must show:
• Strong commitment to federal service
• A significant accomplishment within their field that meets the needs of the American people
• Excellence in customer service to citizens or other beneficiaries

Award recipients are chosen from the field of finalists by a selection committee comprised of national leaders representing government, business, entertainment, media and the non-profit/foundation community. The members of the selection committee rank the finalists in each category based on:
• The significance and impact of their accomplishments
• How well they foster innovation
• Demonstrated leadership
• The extent to which they exemplify excellence in public service

Winners are announced at a black-tie gala in the early fall, and winners receive cash in the amount of several thousands of dollars. A complete list of this year’s winners is available here, and a list of previous winners (including individuals such as Bill Gerstenmaier) is available here, and I encourage all interested individuals to read about the amazing accomplishments of our Federal employees.

Additional information on the Sammies awards is available at:

This is a great accomplishment and recognition for our workforce and for ARMD, ARC, and NASA!

Johnson Space Center Disability Employment Awareness Month Program: “Working With People Who Are Not Like Me”

JSC Conflict Resolution and Disability Month_Oct 4 Event Flyer_FINAL_pdf…
Johnson Space Center (JSC) is hosting a presentation by Joe Bontke from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), who will address the following questions:

What’s in your backpack, and is any of it baggage? For today’s multi-cultural and multi-generational workforce to be effective, we all need to be prepared to engage in open communications. This event will identify effective strategies for cross-cultural communications at the workplace, for supporting employees with disability or health condition, and to utilize active listening for better understanding of needs and workplace issues.

Does unconscious bias, unspoken interactions and, ultimately, fear get in the way? This will get you thinking and maybe acting in a different way with people who are not like you.

JSC is streaming this event on Thursday, October 4 at (viewing from 8-9:30am PST / 9-10:30am MST / 10-11:30am CST /11am-12:30pm EST). This event is hosted by JSC Safety and Health Action Team, No Boundaries Employee Resource Group, and JSC Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity. There will be 2 ASL interpreters supporting the event at JSC. Their image will be inserted via the livestream video feed.

National Disability Employment Awareness Month: Celebrating Disability Inclusion for More Than 70 Years

October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM). NDEAM is an annual campaign to raise awareness about disability employment issues and celebrate the contributions of America’s employees with disabilities. The 2018 NDEAM theme is “America’s Workforce: Empowering All.”

In 1945, Congress decreed the first week in October each year as “National Employ the Physically Handicapped Week.” In 1962, the word “physically” was removed to acknowledge individuals with all types of disabilities. In 1988, Congress expanded the week to a month and changed the name to “National Disability Employment Awareness Month.”

At NASA, we work intentionally to attract and retain employees who reflect the diverse world we live in and serve. Hiring employees with diverse abilities strengthens our capability to achieve our mission, creates innovation, and enhances employee engagement. NASA is committed to equal employment opportunity, a workplace free of discrimination and harassment, and a workplace that supports reasonable accommodations and accessible tools and technology so our employees with disabilities can win at work and fully contribute to mission success across the agency.

Many people have disabilities, whether overt or hidden. NDEAM is about encouraging each of us to embrace differences to see the potential in everyone.

In commemoration of National Disability Employment Awareness Month, I invite all employees to frequent the ODEO blog to get information on various activities across NASA and to participate in events in your communities.