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FHWA Works: Careers in Motion

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Welcome to the "FHWA Works: Careers in Motion Employee Spotlight" series, a look into the careers and lives of Federal Highway Administration employees. Each month, we will introduce you to one of nearly 3,000 FHWA colleagues and highlight the important work they do. Our employees come from all corners of the agency but all offer the same, yet unique sense of dedication and professionalism, all while keeping America's roads and bridges safe.

Check out whose career is in motion and how #FHWAWorks! Discover exactly why our agency is celebrating being ranked in the Top 10 percent of "Best Places to Work in Federal Government!"

To learn more about how FHWA Works, explore the video series on YouTube or FHWA's LinkedIn page.

FHWA Works: Employee Spotlight - Monica Jurado

Photo of Monica Jurado

Full Name: Monica Jurado
Title: Pavements and Materials Engineer
Division/Department: FHWA Resource Center
Location: El Paso, TX

  1. What is your typical workday like?
    I am adjusting to my new full time remote work schedule; a typical workday consists of my daily start of checking email, followed by phone/web meetings with my counterparts at Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center and Headquarters, developing trainings, and updating guidance. Due to Transportation Research Board committees I am a part of, I am currently reviewing three research paper submissions. I also provide technical assistance to the division offices.

  2. What has been your biggest accomplishment over the last year?
    Over the last year, my biggest accomplishment has been the promotion of Nondestructive Testing (NDT) and Evaluation for pavements by traveling to different states and training others on how to use NDT technologies through the Strategic Highway Research Program.

  3. Prior to working at FHWA, what was the most unusual or interesting job you've ever had?
    While in high school, I was a telemarketer conducting political, product, and services surveys. This was the most unusual job because of the different types of people and personalities I got to exchange words with.

  4. What are your hobbies in your spare time?
    In my spare time, I'm an avid photographer. I like to capture moments and scenery. I also like to travel and with my two hobbies hand in hand, I spend most of my spare time scrapbooking. I am also a life-long student and love to learn new things, such as dancing, cooking, sign-language, and am currently enrolled as a PhD student.

  5. What is one of the biggest lessons you have learned in your career to get you where you are today?
    Throughout my 9-year career with FHWA, I've learned that opportunities don't always roll around twice and that you must take advantage of the opportunities that arise. I've learned that while my career is very important, I have to work on my work-life balance. I'm also a firm believer that you learn something new every day, and that you should always connect with people and mirror their good qualities while trying to stay away from those that aren't so good. You should always surround yourself with mentors and others who will challenge you and help you by asking the questions but not always give you the answers.

  6. Who do you admire in the transportation field and why?
    Lady Bird Johnson was an advocate for beautifying the nation's cities and highways ("Where flowers bloom, so does hope"). The Highway Beautification Act was informally known as Lady Bird's Bill and had a lot of input from Lady Bird. As an Area Engineer in the New Mexico Division, I learned of the benefits and importance of the Highway Beautification Act.

  7. Complete this sentence: "People would be surprised if they knew..."
    If it weren't for my fear of heights, I would have loved to be a bridge engineer. I am in love with historic bridges and most of my photographs are of bridges.

Other Employee Spotlights

Photo of Al-Hasan Rashida Full Name: Al-Hasan Rashida
Title: Multimedia Specialist
Division/Department: Office of Management Services
Location: Washington, DC
Photo of Neil Gaffney Full Name: Neil Gaffney
Title: Public Affairs Specialist
Division/Department: Office of Public Affairs
Location: Washington, DC
Photo of Susie Tingler Full Name: Susie Tingler
Title: Management Assistant
Division/Department: Director of Field Services
Location: Baltimore, MD
Photo of Christopher Douwes Full Name: Christopher Douwes
Title: Community Planner; commonly known as the Transportation Alternatives and Recreational Trails Program Manager
Division/Department: Office of Human Environment
Location: Washington, DC
Photo of Mohammed Yousuf Full Name: Mohammed Yousuf
Title: Program Manager, ATTRI/Transportation Research Specialist
Division/Department: FHWA Office of Operations R&D
Location: McLean, Virginia
Photo of Rebecca T. Crowe Full Name: Rebecca T. Crowe (Becky)
Title: Transportation Specialist
Division/Department: Office of Safety
Location: ADL- Virginia Division; Richmond, VA
Photo of Jihan Kamel Noizet Full Name: Jihan Kamel Noizet
Title: Transportation Specialist
Division/Department: Office of International Programs
Location: Washington, DC
Photo of Todd Kohr Full Name: Todd Kohr
Title: Legislative Analysis Team Leader
Division/Department: Office of Policy and Governmental Affairs
Location: Washington, DC
Photo of Kirsten Poston Full Name: Kirsten Poston
Title: Disability Policy Analyst
Division/Department: Office of Civil Rights
Location: Washington, DC
Photo of Agnes Vélez Full Name: Agnes R. Vélez
Title: Transportation Specialist
Division/Department: Office of International Programs
Location: Washington, DC
Photo of Joey Hartmann Full Name: Joey Hartmann
Title: Director of the Office of Bridges and Structures
Division/Department: Office of Infrastructure
Location: Washington, DC
Photo of  Marissa Romero Full Name: Marissa Romero
Title: Division Bridge Engineer
Division/Department: Arizona Division Office
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Photo of Doug Hecox Full Name: Doug Hecox
Title: Spokesman
Division/Department: Federal Highway Administration
Location: Washington, DC
Photo of Tome White Full Name: Tom White
Title: Social Media Coordinator
Division/Department: Office of Public Affairs
Location: Washington, DC
Photo of Ralph M. Davis Full Name: Ralph M. Davis
Title: Supervisory Transportation Specialist
Division/Department: Office of Government and Policy Affairs, Office of Highway Policy Information
Location: Washington, DC
Photo of Doug Atkin Full Name: Doug Atkin
Title: Assistant Division Administrator Nebraska Division
Division/Department: Nebraska Division
Location: Lincoln, Nebraska
Photo of Norah Ocel Full Name: Norah M. Ocel, P.E.
Title: Transportation Operations Team Leader/Highway Safety Engineer
Division/Department: Eastern Federal Lands Highway Division
Location: Sterling, Virginia
Photo of LaToya Hines Full Name: LaToya Hines
Title: Staff Assistant to the FHWA Administrator
Division/Department: Office of the Administrator
Location: Washington, DC
Photo of Travis Thomas Full Name: Travis Thomas
Title: Lead IT Specialist
Division/Department: Office of Information Technology Service/Office of Administration (HAD)
Location: Washington, DC
Photo of Brittany Broussard Full Name: Brittany Broussard
Title: Human Resources Specialist
Division/Department: FHWA/Office of Human Resources
Location: Washington, DC
Roger Ryder Full Name: Roger Ryder
Title: Senior Stewardship Advisor/Director of Operations
Division/Department: FHWA Pennsylvania Division
Location: Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Jennifer Nicks Full Name: Jennifer Nicks, PhD, PE
Title: Research Geotechnical Engineer
Division/Department: Office of Infrastructure Research & Development (R&D)
Location: Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center,
McLean, Virginia
Trinette D. Ballard Full Name: Trinette D. Ballard
Title: Marketing and Communications Specialist
Division/Department: FHWA Florida Division
Location: Tallahassee, Florida
Jaun C. Garcia Full Name: Juan C. Garcia
Title: Multimedia Specialist
Division/Department: Management Services/Office of Administration (HAD)
Location: Washington, DC
Melissa Yu Full Name: Melissa Yu
Title: Marketing and Communications Specialist
Division/Department: Center for Accelerating Innovation
Location: Washington, DC
  U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration - Careers in Motion  
Page last modified on September 12, 2017.
Federal Highway Administration | 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE | Washington, DC 20590 | 202-366-4000