One only needs to conduct an internet search about “diversity issues in healthcare” to learn about the needs and impact of diversity in the workplace, specifically healthcare.

Increasing diversity among health professionals improves access to health care for everyone.

Having spent 20 years in the Army, I have had a chance to travel all around the world and “break bread” with many cultures. While I do prefer my fish cooked, I will never forget eating sushi in Japan outside Camp Zama. I am not sure who had a better time – me, watching the chefs prepare the sushi rolls, or those watching me as I ate them. It was of my most memorable meals.

Recently, I attended a Veterans outdoor event. I do this occasionally for state of mind, and to rekindle the camaraderie with my fellow Soldiers. No rank, no race, no gender, no branch of service, no ability level; warriors growing and thriving with each other. I could not stop noticing that the different places, experiences, and histories did not matter as we all worked together and spent time together enjoying one another. We ALL rode 7 miles down an 8000-elevation trail on a mountain…then we ate STEAK!

That same level of satisfaction can be achieved in the workplace too, when we all work together toward a common goal. We each bring a different strength to the table. Your strength may offset my weakness, or my strength compliments another’s strength. And, like the military, VA encourages our staff to be as diverse as our Veterans. That is why the Secretary of Department of Veterans Affairs highlights the laws, policies and protections to ensure a diverse and inclusive environment at VA.

So if you are wondering if you are a “fit” at VA, or if you will feel like a member of the “team”, I encourage you to explore all opportunities. You keep being you, I will be me, and together we will make a difference in the lives of Veterans!

Find your next opportunity at, TODAY!

Darren SherrardIn May 2008, Darren Sherrard was appointed as the Associate Director of Healthcare Recruitment and Marketing (HRM) at the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) Workforce Management and Consulting office (WMC). As Associate Director, Darren oversees VHA’s national recruitment marketing campaigns inclusive of television commercials, print and online media, and recruitment marketing sites. He leads a diverse marketing team representing VA Careers’ website, social media sites, and VHA recruitment events. Darren coordinates strategies, campaigns and effective approaches to carry out HRM’s mission of “driving qualified candidates to” Prior to joining VHA, Darren was Chief Operating Officer of a healthcare staffing firm which he modernized from a small regional company into a thriving national corporation. Darren served 20 years in the U.S. Army; 13 of which were spent in recruiting. During that time, he was known for his ability to transform low performing organizations through training, motivation and ability to develop and provide needed recruitment tools. Darren is devoted to finding the best talent to provide the best care for our Nation’s Veterans.

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Published on Jul. 2, 2015

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