Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging at WRA

By Pema Lin, Vice President of People Operations

My name is Pema Lin, and I’m the Vice President of People Operations at WRA. People Operations is just a fancy way of saying that I think deeply about the intersection of humanity and how we work to achieve great things. 

Since I started at WRA, I’ve been in awe of our staff. At a foundational level, our staff members are exceptional in their areas of domain expertise and in their commitment to our clients. On a more personal level, I’ve been peeling back the layers around the diversity of our staff members’ backgrounds, experiences, perspectives, interests, and complex identities with equal parts admiration, respect, and joy. 

Over the past year, WRA has been engaging in introspection and internal conversations about diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging as it relates to our company culture, the work we do, and our influence and impact on the communities in which we live and work. We recently landed on the following guiding statement which nicely summarizes our company point of view and provides clarity and guidance for the decisions we make and the priorities we set going forward. 

“WRA’s company vision is ‘cultivating a sustainable future where people and the environment thrive,’ and that starts with our staff. We are committed to building a diverse, equitable, and inclusive work environment, and we have developed flexible policies, internal practices, and are investing in programs that prioritize learning and sustainability. We aim to create conditions that allow employees to prioritize their families, lead healthy and balanced lives, and to bring their authentic selves to work everyday. We believe that by creating an exceptional workplace, our employees will be able to do their best work and be able to meaningfully contribute to the sustainability of the environment and the communities in which we live.”

To cultivate empathy, connection, and a sense of community at WRA, we’ve been highlighting the perspectives and experiences of staff members. In May, our team members shared first-person accounts of their cultural experiences to honor and celebrate Jewish American Heritage Month and Asian Pacific American Heritage Month. This month for Pride, we’re highlighting stories from our LGBTQIA+ staff members and are taking great joy in learning about and celebrating the richness of each others’ identities and experiences. 

These stories are true gifts to our entire team. They create moments for sharing, learning, and empathy building. At WRA, we believe that our work gets better and our contributions increase when we feel safe to bring our authenticity and wholeness to work.

If you’re interested in a career in environmental consulting or are already in the industry and have wondered what a more connected type of workplace might feel like, I’m happy to share that we are growing. Check out our job postings. If you don’t see anything that is an immediate fit, please apply to our dream job listing so that we can begin a conversation.