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News | Dec. 14, 2020

What the holidays mean to me: Deborah Winston

DLA Aviation Public Affairs

During the month of December, DLA Aviation Public Affairs will be running a special series of stories titled "What the holidays mean to me." The purpose is to spotlight members of the DLA Aviation workforce during the holidays.  

Name: Deborah Winston

Organization: DLA Aviation Richmond

What is your job title, and what do you do, specifically? I am the director of the Office of Equal Employment Opportunity and Diversity where I oversee the daily EEOD operations.

What do the holidays mean to you? There is something magical in the air during the holidays. The world seems to pause and the joy in the air is penetrating. The whole world seems to be in a festive spirit. I love that even in the madness of purchasing presents, I just feel happy, knowing this holiday will usher in a time of relaxation and being present in the moment. This could mean watching Christmas movies with family, reminiscing while listening to old holiday music, talking and laughing with family, sitting quietly in front of a lighted Christmas tree or the smells of holiday cooking. There is such a sense of peacefulness.

What are your fondest holiday memories? My grandmother, who is many years deceased now, loved the holiday season, particularly a brightly lit tree.  I would have the pleasure of putting up her tree each year. When I was finished, she could not wait to come into the room to sit in her favorite chair and just marvel at the beauty of the twinkling lights and multitude of colored ornaments. The look of joy and happiness on her face from the simple gesture will forever warm my heart. The simple things we take for granted can sometimes bring so much joy to others.

What is your favorite holiday tradition? My children and now my grandchildren decide on a project they would like to do, which they believe would make a difference to someone. One year, my nine-year-old daughter made sweet potato pies and took them to a neighborhood church that fed people in need. I will never forget the gratitude the workers showed, but more importantly, this act of kindness set in motion the desire to help others, something she continues to cultivate even 20 years later.

Name your favorite holiday song and why it’s your favorite:  My favorite holiday song is “Silent Night” by the Temptations. I love the words and the Temptations sing it beautifully.