Reina Valdez

Alumni on the Move - November 2017

Maria Abad   Asian Discovery, Class of 2016

Maria Abad

Asian Discovery, Class of 2016

Maria Abad was promoted to IT Project Lead at The Boeing Company, a few months after completing EDI's Asian Discovery Leadership program, Class of 2016. Her current role in Supply Chain Logistics (SCL) at Boeing, includes managing cross-functional teams from different IT organizations and working with business partners and third-party providers to implement a software-as-a-service application across Boeing, starting with Boeing Commercial Airplanes (BCA). Successful onboarding of BCA production suppliers and IT integration with multiple Boeing procurement systems are her primary focus. As an IT Project Lead, many of her tasks also include business requirements gathering, project and schedule management, stakeholder and leadership communications, risks management and mitigation planning. Aside from that, she also serves on the board for two Boeing Resource Groups: Communications Chair for the Boeing Association of Gay, Lesbian, Bi and Transgender - Puget Sound Chapter, and Vice President for the Boeing Black Employee Association - North Puget Sound Chapter. This year, she was recently featured as a guest speaker on career development for a leadership program at Boeing and during pride month for the Everett Delivery Diversity Council. Needless to say, Maria has kept herself extremely busy at Boeing but enjoys having the fast-paced environment – she would not have it any other way.

When not working, Maria enjoys cooking and pushing herself at cross-fit and pilates during the week. She reserves the weekends for camping and discovering Washington, British Columbia, and Oregon.

Strong women leaders and athletes are Maria’s source of inspiration and motivation. Safra Katz, Oracle President, and Chrissie Willington, four-time World Ironman Champion are the top females she admires the most. Her personal mantra is “Keep Going,” which she developed during one of the EDI sessions. Since then, she has used and practiced her mantra to overcome obstacles that come her way.  


Reina Valdez   Asian Discovery, Class of 2016

Reina Valdez

Asian Discovery, Class of 2016

It’s been seven years since I've joined the Columbia Bank family. I was recently promoted to AVP of Treasury Management Commercial Care Supervisor. This is definitely a career progression and I will continue to work towards bigger goals!

I truly believe that a good employee understands vision of the business, produces efficient results, and within the process, creates a good rapport within the team. It sounds complicated. However, I think it’s as simple as being compassionate. If I care about what I do, the quality of work will be the result.

When I work with someone, I try to be humble and get to know the person so the work will turn into a fun and enjoyable experience. According to articles, there are key components to success. Looking back, I hit all of them. They only matter if you are compassionate and learn to apply them.

I’m not much of a risk taker because I fear for the worse. But little by little, I have taken steps. By knowing the boundaries of the risk, I have been slightly comfortable in going outside of my comfort zone.

My mentors have helped me to get where I am today. As a result of my own mentorship experience, one of my favorite aspects about the job is the ability to foster talent within my employees and helping them identify areas of improvement to activate their career growth and professional potential. I enjoy helping successful people become even more successful and learn from them. I am so grateful for my own mentors!

Alumni on the Move - July 2017

Reina Valdez   Asian Discovery, Class of 2016

Reina Valdez

Asian Discovery, Class of 2016

Reina Valdez recently joined the Associate Board of the 253 Club, YWCA.

I am who I am today because of the people around me, who made an effort and cared about me. Whatever I do, I put 100% effort. In EDI, I learned the importance of giving back. I don't have a good method of how to give back most efficiently, but it doesn't matter, as long as I put 100% effort into anything that I do. I feel that community, work, and environment are what we build. We need to build them together to create the result we want to see. Through EDI’s community project, I experienced the process of planning and execution. As a team, we had an outstanding result!

I remember one of EDI's session was on risk-taking. For me, becoming a board member is a huge risk. I will be stepping out of my comfort zone, but I know it will be very rewarding. The EDI program was a nine-month journey, yet it still continues to influence me for the rest of my life.

With the opportunity I’m given as a board member, I’d love to see the organization make a difference in the community we serve. In order for us to become a strong community, we need to nurture the youth with open arms and provide them the skills to be impactful. At the end, these young leaders will continue to do the work we started.

253 Club is only two-years old, but I feel I’m lucky to see the growth as I grow along with the organization. The 253 Club engages rising leaders in building awareness of YWCA’s values and facilitating community involvement. YWCA's mission is to empower women and eliminate racism.

At EDI, I loved learning about behavior styles and have been applying what I've learned - I’m amazed by how effective it is. Recently, I was assigned a task to “execute” on a launch of a new department. Learning about behavior styles definitely helped in this process since I needed to work with so many people and departments who helped make it successful.

I’m blessed to have such a huge support system in my personal and professional life. Special thanks to my parents and my husband. I used to do things to make others happy, but now I try do things for myself. With that thought process, I expected others to appreciate me, provide me with feedback, etc. My husband made me realize that I need to start doing things for me because of how helping others made me feel.

I’m helping others because I feel great by doing so. To me, the more work I put in, the more results I see. If I can see the result, that’s better, but now I simply like the pleasure of making other people’s days, or making a positive difference. It’s really simple, but it took me years to understand this concept.

Marci's Column - October 2016

Congratulations to the EDI Class of 2016! Thank you for taking us on this incredible eight month leadership journey with you and we can’t wait to celebrate your accomplishments on November 10th & November 17th. We invite everyone to join us at graduation to cheer on the graduates. We have some exciting things planned that you won’t want to miss!!! 

We are now in the midst of filling our classes for 2017. This is going to be a milestone year as we will surpass the 1000 mark of participants that have been through the EDI program. What started as a class of 11 people in 1994, will now be over 1000 alums strong. That is truly amazing. Help us keep this momentum going by enrolling individuals into our 2017 program.  Application deadline is November 30th.

The last few months have been event season here in the Puget Sound area. In September we held our annual Inclusion Fusion fundraiser in which we surpassed our goals and raised over $110,000. We were overwhelmed by all the support and are already looking forward to planning 2017. We had the opportunity to attend many other galas including, Densho, ACRS, El Centro de la Raza, NW Asian Weekly and many more. We are extremely grateful to be part of this larger community and we love running into so many EDI alumni wherever we go! 

In Portland, our Executive Director Emeritus, Alan Sugiyama, put together a happy hour event and it’s great to see our Portland EDI community growing. We had over 25 in attendance including Board members, community and corporate leaders and Portland alums from the 2011, 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016 classes. You can read more about this event and how Al has been doing in this newsletter. We hope to do more events like this in both Puget Sound and Portland.

See you at graduation!