News | Feb. 26, 2021

Black History Month Spotlight: Zita Oubre

By DLA Aviation Public Affairs

A Feb. 3  Presidential Proclamation on National Black History Month calls “on the American people to honor the history and achievements of Black Americans and to reflect on the centuries of struggle that have brought us to this time of reckoning, redemption, and hope.”

This year’s theme, “The Black Family: Representation, Identity, and Diversity” was provided by Association for the Study of African American Life and History, the founders of Black History   (asalh.org)

Defense Logistics Agency Aviation spotlights Zita Oubre, who shares what the celebration of Black History Month means to her.

Name, Title/location: Zita Oubre, management analyst, DLA Aviation at San Diego

How long have you worked for DLA? Since 2010

What does the 2021 Black History Month mean to you? 

It is a time for the Black/African American communities to remember and unify in celebrating the beauty, strength, resilience and richness of our culture.

What misconception about your heritage or country of origin would you like to correct?  

Don’t use the hues of our skin as a barometer of whether or not you’ll stare at me concerningly when I enter a store, or if you consider me beautiful or intelligent.  We have character and merit, just not afforded equal opportunities and accesses based merely on skin pigment.  Moreover, it shouldn’t take a movement for you to love your neighbor as yourself.

Tell us a little known fact that most people do not know about you.

Even though I’ll complain about the distance, I really enjoy exploring different hiking trails.

How important is it to you that Defense Logistics Agency Aviation recognize this month?

It is absolutely key, DLA is a notable DoD agency. If we want better, we have to do better and the best way of doing that is through exemplifying the change we want to see.  Typically, if it is not from the top down, it loses validation of sending the message that this is of importance.

What do you want the DLA Aviation workforce to take away from celebrating this particular month?   Understanding cultures helps working relationship dynamics. Knowing our history helps us to “really” appreciate how we got to where we are today and how we move forward tomorrow. I’ll never forget we had an on-site BHM event and an employee basically shared they never really knew what Dr. Martin Luther King did for us.  It really shocked me because at that moment, I realized this is what happens when you don’t share it and remove it from curriculum, home discussions and work.  If not for Dr.  King’s non-violent commitment to equality and justice, we would not be coworkers, sitting in the same room, doing the same jobs for the same pay and in reality, we couldn’t even be friends because it would be unacceptable. Too many lives, known and unknown, were sacrificed, not to be celebrated!