PANYNJ Commits to Employing Veterans and Active Duty Members

Steve Adubato talks with Mary Lee Hannell, Chief of Human Capital, and Sean Kazmark, Principal Transportation Planner, Port Dept., Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, about their commitment to veterans and active duty members and their goal to make 5% of the agency’s work force U.S. military by 2020.

1/21/19 #2191






"We're pleased to be joined by two friends from the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, Mary Lee Hannell, Chief of Capital... excuse me, Human Capital, and Sean Kazmark, Principal Planner, Port Department at the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. Good to see both of you. Thanks for having me. Good seeing you too. The Port Authority is a huge organization impacting the New York New Jersey region, but we're not here to talk about the organization overall. We're here to talk about the specific targeted effort to recruit, hire, train, and make the most of our terrific veterans, who have given so much to our country. Absolutely. And our veterans initiative, relatively new. Since 2017. We made a strong commitment that we would double down on the number of veterans we had in the organization at the time to bring it to a 5% target, and we are just about there. We're at 4.9% ahead of schedule. Is it challenging? It is. Mostly because translating military skills into corporate skills is a little bit of an art, and sometimes veterans don't even know how to translate those skills themselves. So to help them repackage the skill sets they have, and figure out where they fit into the corporate leadership world... Sure. a little bit of a challenge, but very doable. You just need some time and effort. So let me ask you this. You served 12 years? Navy? Correct. Six active? Six in the Reserves? It goes without saying, on behalf of everyone in public broadcasting and on FiOS, our other friends, thank you for your service. Thank you very much. You took skills away from that experience that you brought to the Port Authority, such as? Sure. So I think it's important to note first off that employers oftentimes spend a lot of time, resources, and money trying to replicate the technical skills that... and the soft skills that the men and women learn in their training, starting from basic training to their follow-on schools, and so it's the soft skills that you continue to utilize in your military service. Such as? Dedication to duty, responsiveness, being able to think... How about being reliable and on-time? Little things like that? Well those go without saying. And mission-driven. Right. Mission-driven. Mission-driven. What does that mean, Mission-driven, Sean? So each individual branch is instilled sort of core values that they learn, and when you take on an assignment, or when you're asked to do something, I feel as though you project those core values in any aspect that you... any sort of role that you..."