Valdez Follows Family’s Railroading Tradition

Valdez 2023 Native American Indigenous Leadership Award | LR

Even as a child, Desrié Valdez, senior manager-Technical Training, knew railroading as part of her everyday life – she and her family accompanied her father and uncles as they installed and maintained tracks on a Navajo tie gang traveling the Southwest, witnessing ‘Building America’ in action.

Inspired by the traditions of her family, Valdez now leads the Mechanical training team, helping ensure mechanical inspections and repairs are performed to standard.

Acknowledging Valdez’s talent and commitment, Profiles in Diversity Journal recognized her with a 2023 Native American Indigenous Leadership Award.

“My passion for education and pride in being a generational railroader laid the tracks for my career,” Valdez said.

Valdez’s Profiles in Diversity Journal Q&A excerpt:
Who is your personal hero? My parents.
What was your first job? Caseworker for the Navajo Nation.
Favorite charity? AISES, Native Forward and Native Pathways.

For more on Valdez, check out Profiles in Diversity Journal’s edition highlighting the Native American Indigenous Leadership Awards.

Marsha Woodard, senior manager-Litigation Environment, was also recognized. Stay tuned for her story. 

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