2015 – 2016

Download original survey (pdf)

  1. What would you like to see from APAEA in 2015 and 2016?
  • Opportunities for face-to-face camaraderie. A sense of “For Use, By Us.”
  • face to face meeting, updates on what the committee has accomplished,
  • Monthly outreach and recruitment to local events (free or cost effective). Federal Interagency
  • recruitment to include major cities, Hawaii and the US territories. Focus on the top ten mission
  • critical jobs to increase the workforce representation. Develop a set of core values. Create a
  • membership pin and or card for all employees. Develop a coin to reward excellence for
  • members and partners.
  • Local/regional meetings – face to face
  • API directory of staff by region so that those wishing to advance may speak with others.
  • Continue with leadership training opportunities.
  • More involvement in national issues.
  • Opportunities to meet other members and more mentorship opportunities.
  • I’d like to see more positive action taken to increase awareness and representation of APA’s in
  • the Federal Gov. So far all I’ve seen are some emails and webcasts of people talking in
  • Washington DC.
  • Funding for speakers provided to local units.
  • It is great in 2014, keep it up.
  • I don’t have any particular suggestions right now but will think about them.
  • 1) continued focus on building the APAEA community and perhaps including simple ways (like this survey) where members can contribute as well. I, personally, would love to hear stories/perspectives from other APAEA members on things such as how has their background shaped the way they look at the world, natural resources, other people, etc. 2) Also, it might be worth more specific thought to how APAEA wants to “brand” itself in the agency where inclusivity is the new buzz word… How might joining APAEA be a cool/okay thing to do? — Might we invite agency APA SEPMs, if they haven’t been invited already? Might there be more agency leaders who can become involved and show that groups like ours is a good thing? A non-Asian former ranger, now Forest Sup., had mentioned to me earlier that she was interested in learning more about Asian perspectives and experiences. How can APAEA foster such exchanges to help broaden understanding and appreciation for our diverse backgrounds?
  • Exploration of the establishment of international relationships (such as sister forests) to further
  • broaden USFS collaboration in conservation and restoration.
  • more networking opportunities and perhaps an APEA all employee meeting face to face
  • I’d like to learn what role APAEA is or will be playing in the latest Diversity and Inclusiveness
  • More training opportunities, particularly around leadership and hiring.
  • More training and employee development opportunities that explore new ways of providing targeted training to APA employees.
  • I would like to see APAEA take a leadership role in spreading the aloha spirit throughout the Forest Service. APAEA needs to deliver on its mission of being inclusive by being actively inclusive.
  • I believe more efforts should be made to recruit Pacific Islander and Asian American students from smaller community colleges in rural areas. These students are more likely to be willing to live in rural areas, where most Forest Service units are located.
  • Organizing more activities to engage members- facilitate more participation
  • I would be interested in how far APAEA has connected geographically with Regions 8/9 personnel as well Northern and Southern Research Station employees and S&PF folks (Northeastern Area and the Southern area)?
  • Mentor programs
  • 1) All APAEA employees engage in a face-to-face forum/summit. Just an idea – R5 could host. 2) Encourage all APAEA employees to add to their IDP as training, to attend one of the APA conventions/training (i.e. FAPAC, AdvOCAte
  • I like to see opportunities to meet other APAEA through training seminars or events. Especially in the Eastern Region.
  • A strategy for a proactive increase in APAEA people in the agency. Guidance and tools on the APAEA webpage are great but passive.
  • Reaching out to really educate those in college to become involved in organizations with a strong bent toward natural resources. Education is so important to replacing ignorance.
  • More on mentoring, training, and employment opportunities.
  • I would like to become more involved before I retire.
  • Continue working on recruiting members and providing mentor/mentee opportunities
  • doing well. keep up with the good work.
  • I think APAEA is doing a great job. Keep it up.
  • I would like to see an annual report/presentation on accomplishments and how we can continue to learn and grow as an employee resource group. The more we share stories and successes the more we can gain opportunities as an agency.
  • Continue to work on “glass ceiling” many Asian Americans — Pacific Islanders face trying to get into higher management positions.
  • More member involvement
  • Fundraiser for APAEA or another charitable organization. Use funds to promote organization or target a APAEA project that encourages membership or teaches folks about APA. Make a APAEA t-shirt.
  • More ways to connect meaningfully with fellow APAEA members.


  1. What should the Forest Service leaders know about Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders among the public we serve?
  • That we are a group of hard working employees with work ethics and core values up to par and our heritage and traditions play a very important part in how we carry ourselves.
  • I think they should know that AAPI would often like to utilize NFLS for recreation or other uses but are not always reached out to. Some of the resources could be set up in a way to better serve these types of uses such as advertizing notices beyond just the classifieds / legal notices in papers, etc. This is a really poor way to let people know of scoping opportunties, buisness opportunties, etc. Short flyers, targeted social media ads, and making contact with AAPI community leaders would be a better way.
  • Most of the APA’s we serve have little to no interest in the work we do, or the jobs we provide.
  • We need some real education efforts and incentives to appeal to a younger more technological oriented generation.
  • That there are cultural differences and each side needs to understand and embrace the differences
  • I grew up in an urban Asian immigrant population who hold very different cultural perspectives on the outdoors and careers related to the outdoors. There is a lot of education that is needed if we are to be successful in recruiting future employees from this segment of the APA public, not to mention urban youth in general where “working for the great outdoors” doesn’t resonate, even if they have interests in helping the environment. We need to be thinking of other and more innovative ways to reach those segments of the public.
  • We are people who are very dedicated to resource management and protection, working with folks from many different backgrounds in both urban as well as rural communities. APAEA casts a wide loop around many different ethnic backgrounds, communities, and such – so there can be no expectation that we can speak with one central voice – but represent a broad range of experiences and backgrounds – which is where we can draw much strength. I know folks worry about having recognizable faces at the WO-level and in upper leadership positions – but from my perspective as a research wildlife biologist and team leader in a research work unit in the Northern Research Station – I really would not see that as a productive use of my time (just my opinion). So we do what we can do – in the places where a difference can be made.
  • The messages articulated so effectively and positively in the “Civic Engagement through Public Service” should be made available to all Forest Service leaders.
  • Most Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders live in urban areas. Recruitment and retention of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders who do not value life in the rural areas where most Forest Service untis are located will continue to be difficult, unless recruitment efforts start in rural areas or these young employees are encouraged to foster ties to the local rural communities where they are assigned.
  • Where we fit in the agency’s history.
  • There are barriers to Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders advancing to higher positions. One is that for my region and I suspect in other regions, there is little or no representation in GS-13 “official and managers” positions. They stop at the GS-12 level with no bridge to the GS-14 level.
  • We are people. We have pride in our ancestry that is beyond food and arts. We come from a variety of backgrounds, diverse within diversity. If the FS would think beyond diversity as a dozen or so emphasis groups of people and instead think about the expanded diversity that is brought into the FS family through those dozen or so emphasis groups, the effect would be enormous and enlightening.
  • Any diversity provides unique perspectives and approaches to not only work but life as well. It is vitally important to have a well represented workforce without fear of someone from different cultures.
  • recruiting is important
  • Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders are more than techno-nerds.
  • Family and community bonds make it hard to take a job far away. You can’t fault people for having grown up differently than what you assume is normal, or your version of “American.” not sure I understand what you’re asking here.
  • APAEA should develop membership directory booklet (hard cover and digital) with short biographies (by RSA’s) of all member and contributions to the AAPI initiatives.
  • Public service means exposing elementary school aged children to careers in FS.


  1. Any other suggestions or feedback for APAEA? e.g. How has the APAEA network helped you? How can we improve our website? Do you have a favorite recipe you could share?
  • Let’s be bold enough to hold the agency accountable for when it has not succeeded in diversity or inclusion.
  • Open the membership to student interns, this will give the candidates a sense of belonging, responsibility and accountability.
  • Keep up the good work. Diversify to have standing board of API reps by state or forest.
  • Website would be more visually appealing with more succinct page titles/links on the left.
  • Let’s carry on with the wonderful job we are doing and take pride in what APAEA has already accomplished and still striving to accomplish in this diverse agency
  • The website looks better I think.
  • So far I can’t say APAEA has helped me much.
  • APAEA has raised my awareness about the interconnectedness of various cultures. APAEA has shown me that ties to the Asian/Pacific Islander groups are rich and diverse and may relate to adoptions, place of residence, family history, and many other factors beyond physical appearance. APAEA is a rich and diverse netowork of professionals. I encourage the organization to continue to reach out to all people with an eye toward inclusivity. Great work so far!
  • I think it’s hard to get the energy moving and expand the network. How to garner support and visibility amongst ourselves and the agency.
  • Good job organizing webinars. The web site looks great. I am happy and willing to contribute a recipe, but would be better prepared in a different venue (I currently don’t have recipe on hand).
  • APAEA has given me a great deal of support and courage to speak out and organize ways to actively create a more inclusive atmosphere of respect at my own office. APAEA is on a roll and our outreach efforts for being inclusive and respectful should be a main focus as well as a role model for other employee associations and groups.
  • Perhaps APAEA should be more invovled with events that occur in rural areas. A good example is the Shasta Taiko Festival (http://shastayama.org/Public/HomePage).
  • More FS employees that are not APAs should know (via advertisements) that this association exists.
  • Continue with the strong Advisory leadership support from the National level. APAEA network has provided me with a sense of community and belonging. Thanks!
  • Keep on truckin’
  • focused program
  • I have corresponded with some wonderful folks I would not have otherwise met without the APAEA connection. That has been great. I’m not much good with websites so I don’t have any comments. On the question of favorite recipes – anglo or Japanese – if we were to do something like that – I’d hope it would not be like the one just done by the fs federal women’s program recently I really enjoyed the youtube video on API’s in government and would like to see more projects like this to promote APAEA. (apaea.org/aapi-in-public-service/)

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