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Meet Our Inclusion Council: Jessica Thomas

January 10, 2023

Meet Our Inclusion Council: Jessica Thomas

Meet our Inclusion Council!

Throughout the year, we’ll be highlighting our Inclusion Council members and learn more about their committed efforts to diversity and inclusion. Our latest featured Council member is Jessica!

PSA’s Internal Communications Specialist, Maggie Short, had a chance to interview with Jessica (Component Repair Analyst and Inclusion Council Secretary). Read more about Jessica’s story below:

1. What is your role with the Inclusion Council? I am a member, as well as Secretary. I take minutes and moderate the meetings, help organize logistics, and work with the Chairperson and Vice Chairperson to set up agendas.

2. What is your role at PSA? Component Repair Analyst

3. Why do you think the Inclusion Council is important to PSA, what role does it play and how does it fit into the company vision? I believe what makes us different, makes us stronger. When team members feel excluded, they aren’t comfortable expressing their big, beautiful, innovative ideas. If we stock our toolbox with nothing but hammers, all that’s going to happen is a big mess. Having a diverse set of tools and allowing each one to shine and bring their full potential to the project, that’s how we can build something amazing – together!

4. Why are you passionate about diversity and inclusion? I want my children to live in a society that recognizes that differences are a reason for celebration and growth, rather than a reason for destruction. I want them to love how they want, think how they want, ask questions and embrace acceptance and individuality. And, I want to help lay a strong foundation where they can build concepts, conclusions, opinions and designs that haven’t even been dreamt up yet.
“It is time for parents to teach young people early on that in diversity there is beauty and there is strength.”—Maya Angelou

5. What makes you more than your job title? I am more than a Repair Analyst at PSA because off the clock, I surround myself with circumstances that encourage me to explore. I make it a point to leave my comfort zone – difficult as it may be – in the pursuit of knowledge and experience.

I have been endearingly referred to as a “professional failure” for taking on projects or roles where, in some people’s views, I fell flat.

The time I came up with an elaborate cake design which I meticulously executed for hours until the final reveal, where it then looked like it belonged on an episode of “Nailed It.” It was still delicious.

The time I tore up a section of the backyard and built an elaborate play area with the kids when, for a fraction of the cost, I could have bought a premade playset. I learned how much work it was to shovel a trailer full of playground rubber. And the kids learned that when they put in good work, they get good results.

With every stumble, I’ve gotten more comfortable with myself. I came out of my shell and was rewarded with a beautiful group of friends who are willing to lend their combined skills and experiences to do their part to make PSA a better place.

All of these experiences have made my life richer. When I try something new, I learn a little, I gain confidence, I embrace not taking myself too seriously. I am proud to be a “professional failure.”

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