Union Pacific Railroad's Latino Employee Network (LEN) recently hosted an Employee Resource Group (ERG) conference in Scottsdale, Arizona, connecting subject matter experts, company leaders and employees to discuss the railroad’s critical role as the leading provider of rail transportation services between the U.S. and Mexico.
Union Pacific’s CEO Jim Vena and President Beth Whited each shared strategic business insights about the state of the railroad. LEN’s longstanding executive sponsor Kenny Rocker, executive vice president-Marketing and Sales, highlighted the new competitive intermodal service offerings Union Pacific recently activated across its Southern Region, including Port Houston on-dock, Falcon and Eagle Premium, as well as the Phoenix pop-up ramp.
Marketing and Sales Vice President-Mexico Beto Vargas Garcia shared an overview of Union Pacific’s reach across Mexico and the assets available to support customer demand. LEN members also heard from outside industry expert Luisa Fernandez-Willey, assistant vice president-Policy and Economics, Association of American Railroads, who dove into the key role of America’s freight railroads in international markets.
Established in 2004, LEN aims to improve understanding of the Latino employee experience through partnership with the company on recruitment, development and retention initiatives.
Two subject matter expert panels facilitated discussions on hot topics: Kiley Freeman, general director-Marketing and Sales, hosted the “Connecting Our Network” panel with Loup Logistics team members highlighting the subsidiary’s competitive advantages while Wes Lujan, assistant vice president-External Relations, led a “Connecting Our Communities” panel of Public Affairs experts sharing personal and professional insights.
Panel member Adrian Guerrero, assistant vice president-Public Affairs, stressed the importance of Union Pacific’s ongoing interactions with the public: “Everything we do touches the communities where we live and work, so we have to continually ask if we're being good community partners.”
Echoing the theme of leadership, keynote speaker Marisa Rivera, CEO of Mpowerment Works LLC, encouraged conference attendees to think about the best leaders they’ve known and the qualities they possess, such as authenticity, confidence, commitment and vision.
Employees had the opportunity to make a variety of meaningful connections including: touring Loup Logistics’ Precision Components Inc. Reload transload facility; packing personal hygiene kits for nonprofit International Rescue Committee; and experiencing Latin food, as well as cultural performances by Ollin Yoliztli Dance Academy and the Arizona Mariachi Music Academy.
Did you know? Union Pacific hosts nine ERGs and one Business Resource Group, with 5,000 systemwide members collaborating to promote a diverse environment where everyone can do their best work.