Profiles of African Americans at EPA: Reginald Allen
Assistant Deputy Chief of Staff
On IPA as Executive in Residence - Affiliate Professor
George Mason University
Where were you born?
New York City, NY
What brought you to EPA?
After serving 30 years as an officer of Armor and Cavalry in the United States Army, I was looking for an opportunity to continue my service in the federal government. In 2015 I had the honor to compete and be selected as the SES Director of the Office of Administrative and Executive Services (OAES) in the Office of the Administrator.
What type of work do you do at EPA?
In my current role on IPA I serve as the Executive-in-Residence – Affiliate Professor at George Mason University. My mission there is to help shape the next generation of EPA employees and help them see all the positive work the career staff at EPA are doing every day to protect human health and the environment. To do this I work with students and faculty across the University to improve linkages between EPA and GMU, broadening students and faculty experiences and potentially future career opportunities through extensive lecturing around the university. This includes keynote presentations during a University Seminar Speaker Series, classroom presentations, and the University’s keynote speaker for their large Veterans Day celebration. Other projects include development of the “Environmental Professionals Career Network (EPCN)” to connect students with current and former professionals in the federal government; and leveraging my national security background to develop the first ever at GMU Environmental Security Course. Prior to my IPA I served on a detail as Senior Advisor to the Deputy Administrator from my position of record as Assistant Deputy Chief of Staff and Director of the Office of Administrative and Executive Services.
What is your highest level of education? What was your major?
I have two masters degrees one in Education from University of Louisville, and one in National Security Strategy from National Defense University, my undergrad degree was in Business Administration from North Carolina A&T State University.
What message would you like to send other Black/African Americans who are considering college or a career in environmental protection?
I believe there is nothing more important than education to improving the life’s chances for anyone, but especially people of color. I also believe that government service is as honorable a profession as there is; and that a diverse workforce that looks like the nation we serve is important. A career in government provides that opportunity to serve and help the American people. That help can be direct or indirect, but every contribution matters. As far as EPA is concerned, I tell everyone who will listen, especially former members of the military that EPA is an organization with a righteous mission. I believe protecting human health and our environment is a mission to which veterans and all Americans can relate, including people of color. I encourage anyone interested in contributing to improving our nation and our world to look here.