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News | Dec. 7, 2017

New mentorship program aims to InSPIRE

By John Dwyer III DLA Troop Support Public Affairs

A new road to professional and personal development will open for employees at the Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support early next year. 

Joanne Anello, a division chief in the Industrial Hardware supply chain, is developing a mentorship program based on employee feedback in the 2016 DLA Culture Survey and subsequent IH Culture Improvement Team meetings.

Anello has worked in three Troop Support supply chains and volunteered to help groom junior employees in the Pathways to Career Excellence program before she became a supervisor in IH. She’s using her experience to create the program, which is called Industrial Hardware Success and Partnership in Reaching Excellence, or InSPIRE.

The program is open to all Troop Support employees.

Anello said that InSPIRE is unique from other programs in that, “we have it broken out into four different levels based on where you are in your career.”

These four levels, or cohorts, consist of employees in the same grade, from intern through new supervisor, who provide mentorship from the next higher grade. For example, a GS-12 employee will mentor a GS-11 employee, and GS-11 employees may mentor GS-9 employees or PaCERS.

Employees can apply as a mentor or mentee, request specific mentors and participate in community service activities. Mentors and mentees are also encouraged to engage in not only professional, but whole person mentorship, within their comfort zone, Anello said.

InSPIRE is scheduled to start in January 2018. While applications may be submitted at any time, those interested in starting as soon as the program begins should contact Joanne Anello or Chuck Zerambo to submit an application by Dec. 15.

Anello also recruited the assistance of Industrial Hardware purchasing agent Chuck Zerambo after he approached her at a CIT meeting and told her about his mentor training.

Zerambo, a certified trainer in areas such as professional relationships and goal setting, is currently involved in Rider University’s Mind Your Business program and Philadelphia’s Young Entrepreneur Academy.

“His training and mentoring background is a perfect fit,” Anello said about Zerambo. “It’s great to have someone be a part of this program who is as passionate about it as I am.”

John Mumbower, a new supervisor at IH and a chief master sergeant in the New Jersey Air National Guard, said that the program will be “without a doubt, definitely” a good thing.

InSPIRE targets employees at the intern through GS-12 levels, as well as new GS-13s. The program is distinct from DLA Troop Support’s shadow program which targets GS-12 through GS-14 level employees for command level observation and exposure.