FORT BELVOIR, Va. –
Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month is an annual celebration that recognizes the historical and cultural contributions of individuals and groups of Asian and Pacific Islander descent to the United States. The AAPI umbrella term includes cultures from the entire Asian continent – including East, Southeast and South Asia – and the Pacific Islands of Melanesia, Micronesia and Polynesia.
What started as Asian/Pacific American Heritage Week in 1978 expanded to a monthlong celebration in 1992. The 2022 theme is “Advancing Leaders Through Collaboration.”
Defense Logistics Agency Energy is highlighting employees of AAPI heritage who are honoring their history and making a difference through their accomplishments both in their workplace and community.
What is your name and where is your hometown?
I am Christine Pamplona and my hometown is Iba, Zambales, Philippines.
What is your ethnicity?
What is your title/department? What do you do, specifically?
I am a Program (Budget) Analyst. I manage and monitor DLA Energy Okinawa and Japan offices budget requirements. Additionally, I serve as the Government Purchase Card Billing Official for Okinawa region.
How many years of service do you have? How many with DLA and/or DLA Energy?
I have seven and a half years of government services. I have been with DLA Energy Okinawa for a year and a half.
How did you get into this career field?
Working in the finance field has been my dream job. I completed my bachelor’s degree in accounting, and I always wanted to find a job that is related to finance. I started as a cashier/customer service representative, vault cashier, bank teller, and then teller Supervisor. When we moved to Hanscom Air Force Base [Massachusetts] in 2014, I had the opportunity to join the federal government as an accounting technician. From there, I moved to different places with my active-duty spouse, and fortunately, I managed to stay in the finance career field.
I truly believe that I got into this career field with dedication, hard work, and the support of many people around me, Supervisors, friends, mentors, and most importantly, family.
What advice would you have given yourself 10 years ago?
You are fortunate to be here in the Unites States. Never give up. Keep trying, work harder, and be patient… the perfect opportunity will be coming your way.
What advice do you have for others who may want to follow in your footsteps?
Be proud of who you are and where you came from. Do not let anything or anyone hinder your goals. English may be your second language, but do not let that fail you. Be yourself, work harder, and respect your co-workers, leadership, and everyone around you. Lastly, always remember someone helped you to get where you are. Therefore, as you succeed and reach your goal, do NOT forget to pay it forward.
What personal accomplishments are you most proud of?
I was born and raised in the Philippines and my dream as a child was to get a finance job. Fulfilling this dream in the United States is one of my greatest accomplishments. In addition, I am blessed with a family, two kids and a husband, that is always there to support me.
Do you have a personal motto? If so, what is it?
Family is everything…the unconditional love and support you receive from them are important keys to a successful career.
What do you think about when you hear Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month?
I am proud to be part of Asian American and Pacific Islander community. I am grateful that we celebrate this event every year to gain more knowledge about our history and culture.
I think about things “WE” have done to help shape a community (small or big) for the better. For me specifically, I think about little things I have done for DoD…little things like doing my job every day to the best of my ability.
How has your family’s ancestry/origins influenced your life?
My family’s ancestry/origins are my baseline. Due to our life situation or lack of financial stability, I was raised to work hard just to get the minimum life essentials such as daily meal. With that said, my ancestry/origins influence my work ethic – work hard, respect everyone, and value my job.
Are there any other ways you contribute to your community or workplace?
I was previously a Key Spouse for my husband’s squadron. During my tenure (18 months), we improved 300 active-duty members and dependents’ quality of life by organizing events. Specially, when their spouses were deployed. Currently, I have been mentoring friends to help them reach their career goals…paying it forward.