Michelle Mills: 2013 PMF
I'll take this opportunity to also thank all the federal and non-federal workers in the health care, care economy, skilled trades, information technology, finance and business, transportation, supply chain and logistics industries, that continue to do an incredible job during the COVID-19 pandemic– thank you! I also want to encourage all future Presidential Management Fellows (PMF) to take the journey of being a social engineer, a force of positive change, and an inspiration to the next generation of government leaders.
The journey has not been linear for me (which makes it fun), I started my PMF journey as a licensed attorney. I initially started working at the US Department of Agriculture managing grants, contracts, and later working in the Office of the Secretary’s Center for Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships on White House Initiatives. I later transitioned as a PMF and converted to competitive service at the Department of Labor’s Bureau of International Labor Affairs (ILAB) where I spent several years as an International Relations Officer working on congressional reports and directives, coordinating with colleagues from the State Department and USTR, and negotiating with foreign leaders to address and combat child labor, forced labor, and human trafficking in Sub-Saharan African countries. I also worked in US Department of Labor’s (DOL) Office of Apprenticeship managing a diverse portfolio of investments and working as a team lead in expanding pre-apprenticeship and registered apprenticeship opportunities for youth. Currently, I am a senior policy advisor in DOL’s Office of Job Corps, an agency funded at approximately $1.7B that serves opportunity youth from underserved and marginalized communities so that they can champion their own cause and earn family sustaining wages. Through the several experiences and roles taken in various federal agencies, I have grown professionally and personally. It is a privilege each and every day to work with a talented and diverse group of individuals to support the Administration’s and DOL’s mission to “foster, promote, and develop the welfare of the wage earners, job seekers, and retirees of the United States; improve working conditions; advance opportunities for profitable employment; and assure work-related benefits and rights.” I hope you are encouraged but mostly excited to start your federal career/journey – mine is still going and the journey continues to be filled with new and rewarding experiences.