Friday, October 29, 2010

PCC Offers "Mailing Tune Up" to Businesses

South Florida businesses interested in saving money will want to register for a free workshop that includes a “mailing tune up” sponsored by the Miami-Dade County Postal Customer Council.

The workshop is set for Friday, November 5, from 8:00 am to 9:30 am, in the Postmaster’s Conference Room at the Miami General Mail Facility, 2200 NW 72 Avenue, Miami. In addition to the tune up, businesses will learn about Direct Mail and online holiday shipping and package options, and get an overview of the Postal Service. A free continental breakfast will be included.

Postal Customer Councils establish an effective dialogue and improve communication between the U.S. Postal Service and its customers. PCCs help keep customers apprised of changes in service, make suggestions or improvements to their local Postmaster, and give customers a role in the postal decision-making process. Nationwide, there are more than 200 PCCs, including the Miami-Dade County PCC, that regularly meet and conduct mailer clinics, educational workshops, and business expos.

To register for this event, please visit:

Key West to Pay Tribute to All Veterans

Key West Postmaster Jane Evans invites all Florida Keys employees to join her in paying tribute to veterans, past and present, on Thursday, November 11.

The Postmaster is coordinating postal participation on a float in the annual Key West Veterans Day Parade. Beginning at 4 pm, the parade will travel along Duval Street, with a reviewing stand near Fleming and Duval. In addition to the postal float, military units, veterans' groups, and other patriotic units will march through the streets of Old Town Key West.

Key West always has been an important military post, since it sits at the northern edge of the deepwater channel connecting the Atlantic and the Gulf of Mexico via the Florida Straits. Fort Taylor was initially built on the island. The Navy added a small base from which the USS Maine sailed to its demise in Havana, Cuba at the beginning of the Spanish-American War. In the beginning of World War II, the Navy increased its presence from 50 acres to 3,000 acres, including all of Boca Chica Key's 1,700 acres, and the construction of Fleming Key. The Naval Air Station Key West is the main facility on Boca Chica, where the Navy trains its pilots.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

USPS Rated Top Business for Hispanics

The Postal Service’s commitment to diversity has placed it among the best of the best employers to work for, according to HispanicBusiness magazine’s Diversity Elite 60, a list of the nation’s top organizations that promote and model diversity in the workplace.

Ranking among the top 15 for leadership and personnel, the Postal Service, with 52,000 Hispanic employees, met 33 variables that measure a company’s commitment to Hispanic hiring, promotion, marketing, philanthropy and supplier diversity. HispanicBusiness magazine compiled the list after contacting the top Fortune 1000 companies, American subsidiaries of Global 500 companies and large U.S. public and private companies.

“The Postal Service recognizes the value and diversity of all of our employees and is proud to be recognized for it,” said Anthony Vegliante, chief human resources officer and executive vice president. “As one of the nation’s largest employers, we embrace diversity as a vital component to enriching our workplace while better serving our customers — now and into the future.”

“We view diversity as a winning business strategy and use it as a tool to deliver results in developing our workforce and promoting postal products and services,” said Susan LaChance, vice president, Employee Development and Diversity. “Quite simply, it makes good business sense.”

Halloween Counsel from the Pumpkin Patch

Young Jacob Rousseau and his Mom pick out a pumpkin to celebrate Halloween. Jacob and Mom (Millie Acebal Rousseau) are the grandson and daughter of Hispanic Program Specialist Jacinto Acebal. They encourage fun on Halloween, but remind all of us to keep it a safe holiday. Here are some Halloween guidelines for kids, teens, and young adults:

-- Never, ever go into a strangers house or even ring their door for treats unless your parents are with you and say that it's okay. There are some people in life that aren't very nice to kids and you have to be careful. Always make sure that your Mom or Dad is within sight when you go out trick-or-treating.

-- Be careful when you cross a street. Make sure to look in both directions and make sure that there are no cars coming. If you have a little brother or sister with you, take their hand and help them get across the street, too. If the street has a stop light, wait until the cross walk light tells you that it's okay to cross now, but still check before you cross, look both ways.

-- If you are an older kid or young teen, and going out with friends, make sure that your parents know where you are going and who you are going with. This may seem like a pain but they are your parents and they love you. They just want you to be safe.

-- If you can drive and are taking a bunch of friends to a party, make sure that you have enough gas to get there. You don't want to run out on a dark street, all alone, like a bad horror movie!
If you parents give you a curfew, be home when they say. It builds trust between you and them and they are doing it for your own safety. If you are going to be late, call them and let them know.

-- Vandalism is never cool! Throwing eggs at cars and houses is not cool. Someone has to clean it up and it could be you, if you get caught. You can also be arrested and punished as a juvenile. So, don't think that it's fun only if you can get away with it. It's never the right thing to do!

-- Hurting animals is never acceptable behavior! Some people use Halloween as an excuse to hurt cats and that is just wrong! Not only is it illegal in most places to hurt or torture animals and punishable by law, you should never hurt a helpless living thing.

What's Up is Watts Down at Miami P&DC; Green Team Earns PMG Recognition

The Postmaster General has announced the winners of his first-ever PMG Sustainability Excellence Award. The award recognizes outstanding efforts by employees who help the Postal Service and its customers go green.

The Cincinnati NDC, Miami P&DC, Southeast Michigan District, and Suncoast District joined Headquarters Facilities in earning inaugural awards. Together, these teams contributed more than $23 million in savings and cost avoidances. Miami Plant Manager Rick Suarez accepted the award on behalf of the Miami P&DC’s Green Team: Mike E. Adams, Robert E. Balzan (team lead), James A. Burney, Jose M. Jimenez, and Albeo A. Rosado.

Simple steps can really add up to big energy savings. The Miami P&DC proved that by reducing its electric bill by more than $450,000 during FY 2009 by switching out light bulbs and fine-tuning heating and air conditioning systems. The plant's Green Team coordinated the replacement of 3,300 light bulbs with energy-efficient fluorescent bulbs. In addition, lighting was connected to a computer system programmed to turn off lights in areas where equipment wasn't running.

Heating, Ventilating, Air Conditioning (HVAC) equipment was similarly programmed to turn on and off. It also was determined the Miami P&DC didn't need as much air conditioning capacity and an out-of-date chiller was turned off. '

Posters throughout the facility raised awareness about these energy-saving efforts and reminded employees they could save money at home by taking similar, simple steps.

More than 30 teams were nominated in eight categories for the 2010 award. To read more on the winning entries:

2020 Airs Mail Sweepstakes Scam on Elderly

On last week’s 20/20 episode, ABC News Chief Investigative Correspondent Brian Ross reported on a mail sweepstakes scam that defrauded hundreds of elderly Americans. The U.S. Postal Inspection Service initiated the investigation and was the lead investigating agency. Several individuals who were responsible for this scam were apprehended and convicted.

Please cut and paste this link:, and then select "Internet Charity Scam Exposed" for a seven-minute story.

Postmaster General's Letter to Employees

When I became Postmaster General in 2001, I told you about the challenges we were facing, the direction we were taking and the changes our future would require. I also told you about my confidence in your ability to move the Postal Service forward. As I look back, almost 10 years later, your achievements have exceeded every expectation. So it is with mixed emotions that I share with you my plans to retire.

The progress we made together, despite enormous obstacles, has been simply amazing. Service, customer satisfaction, efficiency, cost management and our reputation for trust have never been stronger. We’ve come through some trying times and I’ve always known — whatever the situation — that we’d stand together, work through it and emerge more focused than ever. And we have.

The work has been demanding, but it has been fulfilling. In taking stock, and with the perspective of a decade to guide me, I have reached a point in my life where it is time to move on to other things. Pat Donahoe, Deputy Postmaster General and Chief Operating Officer, will become our new Postmaster General when I “end tour” December 3.

I’ve worked with Pat for many years. His commitment to service excellence and his confidence in you are unparalleled. There’s no one better qualified to lead our organization during a time that will require new levels of flexibility, innovation, performance and change. The governors of the Postal Service have chosen well in selecting him.

While our leadership may change, our needs will not. The Postal Service has to continue adapting to changing customer demand. It has to respond to the pressures of a diminished economy and a revolution in communications. It has to generate new revenue by developing new products, new services and new approaches to pricing. And it has to help shape the public-policy debate as we seek necessary legislation to remove the obstacles in the way of our long-term success. These are the basic elements of our plan to keep America’s postal system viable for many years to come. It will be difficult, more difficult than even the last 10 years, but it can be done, and I know you can do it.

It has been an honor and a privilege to lead this great organization. When I leave, I’ll leave knowing that I’ve done my best through your tireless efforts and support. I’ve truly enjoyed every one of my 32 years with the Postal Service. The most rewarding part has been the people — the thousands of people I’ve had the chance to meet and work with, inside and outside the Postal Service.

I have always been proud to be a member of the postal family. My pride, based on your commitment to our customers and to our nation, has only grown in the years I’ve served as Postmaster General. That will not change — no matter where the future takes me — and I will remain a strong advocate for the Postal Service.

Thank you for your efforts on behalf of those we serve. The work of the Postal Service is important and it will remain important, even as we evolve in the face of a future that is still revealing itself. You make a difference every day.

It’s been a pleasure to work with you.

Federal Employees Benefit Fairs in November

Remember to check your mailbox for a brochure on the Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB) Program … and then mark your calendar.

In November, the South Florida District will be hosting four “Federal Employees Benefit Fairs” to help employees make an informed decision about their health benefits during the upcoming Open Season.

Representatives from several health plans will be available to answer your questions and to hand out information at each location (see below). You’ll also have an opportunity to learn more about the benefits of the Employee Assistance Program (EAP) from professional counselors on staff.

Benefit Fairs are open to all employees throughout the South Florida District. Your attendance is voluntary and off-the-clock.

Miami P&DC Cafeteria, 2200 NW 72 Avenue, Miami
2:00 pm – 10:00 pm

South Florida P&DC Cafeteria, 16000 Pines Blvd, Pembroke Pines
2:00 pm – 10:00 pm

Fort Lauderdale P&DC, Room 129, 1900 W Oakland Park Blvd, Fort Lauderdale
2:00 pm – 10:00 pm

West Palm Beach P&DC Cafeteria, 3200 Summit Blvd, West Palm Beach
2:00 pm – 10:00 pm

Friday, October 22, 2010

"What is Giving?" CFC Contest for Kids

Contest begins: October 23 – November 26, 2010
Contest Rules:
Open to all immediate postal family members’ children.
Age groups Age 5 -7, 8-10, 11-13
Submit a drawing on “what is giving”. Drawing must be on a Standard Poster Board – “22x28” (no exceptions).
In a few words write a short narrative beside/below your drawing. Place a label on the back of the poster and include the employee’s name, facility, a telephone number, child’s name and age.
Drawings will be judged by age group.
A Runner-up and a winner will be determined by age group for Customer Services as well as for Processing and Distribution Centers.
Submit all drawings to Learning, Development & Diversity, GMF Miami, 2200 NW 72 Ave, Miami FL 33152. The drawings will be judged by NALC, APWU, NPMHU representatives and designated Management officials.

The winner will be given a certificate of appreciation and gift and the runner-up a certificate. The CFC Loaned Executives and Union Officials will present the award to the winners at their schools.

USPS Appeals PRC Decision on Exigent Pricing

The U.S. Postal Service today announced its decision to appeal the September 30 ruling of the Postal Regulatory Commission denying the Postal Service exigent price request.

The Postal Service Governors' decision means that a petition will be filed in the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, seeking a review of the PRC's interpretation of the law that governs how prices can be set under extraordinary and exceptional circumstances.

The Postal Service position is that the PRC misread the statute and applied an incorrect standard in evaluating the request for an exigent price increase.

20/20 to Air Mail Sweepstakes Scam on 10/22

On the 20/20 episode to air at 10 pm, Friday, October 22, ABC News Chief Investigative Correspondent Brian Ross will report on a mail sweepstakes scam that defrauded hundreds of elderly Americans. The U.S. Postal Inspection Service initiated the investigation and was the lead investigating agency. Several individuals who were responsible for this scam were apprehended and convicted.

Postal Inspectors arrest more than 1,000 suspects each year for fraud conducted via the mail—and the Postal Inspection Service is just one of many federal agencies that target fraud. Although people 60 and older account for 26 percent of all telemarketing fraud victims, 60 percent of people in that age group are victims of prize or sweepstakes fraud.

That number may sound high, but the actual figure is probably even higher. Victims of prize or sweepstakes fraud often never report it to authorities. It can be embarrassing, even humiliating, to admit you’ve been had.

Postal Inspectors recommend that everyone—regardless of age—take these precautions to themselves from fraud:

-- If you’re unsure about a financial offer, keep a record of it, including all mail and envelopes, and get guarantees in writing before acting on an offer.
-- Don’t give out your credit card or bank account numbers unless you’re sure of who you’re dealing with and what you’ll be getting.
-- Resist high-pressure sales tactics. Insist on time to think and discuss offers with trusted friends, family members, or advisors.
-- Ask the promoter for a call-back number. Respectable companies allow customers time to think about an offer.
-- Report suspicious offers or unsatisfactory transactions conducted by mail via the Postal Inspection Service's online complaint form.


Thursday, October 21, 2010

BSN Staff Recognizes Wanda Brown for her Outstanding Customer Service in WPB

Wanda Brown has been selected as the "Customer Support Team Member" (CSTM) for Quarter 4, FY 10. A CSTM is an employee who directly works with the Business Service Network to provide quality customer service and obtain resolution to service-related issues.

Wanda began her career as a clerk in September 1988. Currently, she is assigned the duties of secretary at the West Palm Beach P&DC.

Wanda has been instrumental in assisting the Business Service Network in successfully presenting business customers, such as Action Marketing, Anthony's Inc., Palm Beach County, and Wilen Press, with positive resolutions leading to high levels of customer satisfaction ratings.

Congratulations, Wanda! Your providing our customers with excellent service is appreciated!

How to Contact Families of Slain TN Workers

Earlier this week, two employees were killed during an alleged robbery of the Henning, TN Post Office. Retail Associate Paula Robinson and Rural Carrier Associate Judy Spray died in a senseless act of violence. This is a tragic loss, not just to those close to them, but to the entire postal family. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the families and friends of our two colleagues.

Sympathy cards and letters to the families of these employees may be sent to the following:

"Family of Judy Spray" and "Family of Paula Robinson"
PO Box 620
Henning TN 38041-0620

The U.S. Postal Inspection Service is offering a $50,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the individual(s) responsible for this crime. Please call 1-877-876-2455 if you have any information.

Hispanic Magazine: USPS is Diversity Model

The Postal Service has earned recognition as one of the best places to work, according to HispanicBusiness magazine’s “Diversity Elite 60” — a list of the nation’s top organizations that promote and model diversity in the workplace.

Ranking among the top 15 for leadership and personnel, USPS met 33 variables that measure a company’s commitment to Hispanic hiring, promotion, marketing, philanthropy and supplier diversity.

“The Postal Service recognizes the value and diversity of all of our employees and is proud to be recognized for it,” said Tony Vegliante, chief Human Resources officer and executive vice president. “As one of the nation’s largest employers, we embrace diversity as a vital component to enriching our workplace while better serving our customers — now and into the future.”

Susan LaChance, Vice President, Employee Development and Diversity, said, “We view diversity as a winning business strategy and use it as a tool to deliver results in developing our workforce and promoting postal products and services. Quite simply, it makes good business sense.”

Holiday Stamps Debut at Post Offices Today

The Postal Service today begins delivering the 2010 holiday season when it issues four new Forever stamps and a single stamp featuring a musical angel during ceremonies at the American Stamp Dealers Association Mega Stamp Show in New York City.
Decorating with evergreens during the winter holiday season is a popular tradition. The Postal Service kicks off the winter celebrations by issuing Holiday Evergreens, featuring images of the foliage and cones of four different conifers: ponderosa pine, eastern red cedar, blue spruce and balsam fir.
The Holiday Evergreens, in addition to the Forever stamp bearing an image of the Liberty Bell, are valid forever, literally, for 1-ounce First-Class Mail cards and letters regardless of when the stamps are purchased or used, and no matter how prices may change in the future.
Today also marks the debut of the Angel with Lute stamp. This stamp features a fresco painted around the year 1480 by Italian Renaissance artist Melozzo da Forli depicting an angel clad in red and green strumming a lute.
Several stamp choices are now available this holiday season. In addition to the new Holiday Evergreens and Angel with Lute stamps, customers can purchase the 44-cent Madonna and Child, Kwanzaa, Hanukkah and Eid stamps online at, by telephone at 800-STAMP-24 and at local Post Offices.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Outstanding Service, a Smile, and a Scan

Dianah C. Bryant (R) is a letter carrier at the Hialeah Main Office. She's worked at the same location during her 24-year career. Customers like her infectious smile, positive attitude, and outstanding service.

Hialeah Letter Carrier Dianah C. Bryant knows that scanning is a strong selling point in the competitive package delivery business.

"Properly scanned letters and packages allow our customers to monitor the progress of their shipments in the postal system," Dianah says.

Consumer behavior has changed dramatically over the past few years, with online purchases resulting in significant growth for package delivery companies. As we all know, we face strong competition among delivery companies for our share of the overall market. The good news is we are gaining market share, and the advent of Priority Mail and the Flat Rate Box have been key components to that growth. But insufficient scanning information costs millions of dollars each year in refunds and lost business opportunities, and hinders our efforts to keep ahead of the competition.

Dianah reminds all employees of the importance of scanning because "it's the future of the Postal Service --- our future."

Early Out Incentive Checks for 2009 Retirees

If you retired or separated from the Postal Service in 2009 as part of the negotiated Early Out Incentive agreement, your additional $5,000 check is not in the mail. It's tentatively scheduled for distribution Oct. 29 ... and you'll need to pick it up at the Post Office.

Those who participated in the retirement incentive program received $10,000 as part of the agreement in 2009. The final $5,000 payment is scheduled to coincide with the Pay Period 22 payroll.

Those who choose to retrieve their checks in person should contact their last place of postal employment in advance to determine where they should report. If you prefer to have your check mailed to your current address, you'll need to provide a written, signed request to your former manager.

If It Fits, It Still Ships

Maybe you already noticed. The Priority Mail Flat Rate Box campaign — perhaps better known for the “If it fits, it ships” commercials — is promoting another item in the flat-rate products line.
This time, Al, the letter carrier who has appeared in previous commercials, reprises his role in a new ad featuring the Priority Mail Flat Rate Envelope.

USPS is focusing on the $4.90 envelope because research indicates large and small businesses will respond to the product. Al provides a simple and competitive solution for customers who already understand the benefits of the flat-rate concept and will immediately recognize the benefits of expanding the basic offering.

The Postal Service is airing the ad on several broadcast and cable TV networks. Supporting the new ad is direct mail to 6 million businesses, an e-mail campaign, online advertising, and print commercials in trade and news publications.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

CFC Grows with Employee Generosity

The South Florida District is only two weeks into the Combined Federal Campaign (CFC), and we're already achieving great results! Hollywood Customer Service is at 38% of its goal to date while Miami Customer Service is at 21% of its goal. Ft. Lauderdale Customer Service is at 18%.
West Palm Beach P&DC has contributed $10, 277 towards its goal.

The District has achieved 9% of the goal of $764,388. Our goal this year is to surpass that amount and to obtain the Traveling Trophy for the South Florida District. To achieve this recognition, we not only have to exceed our goal, but we also have to recruit new participants in comparison to other federal agencies. Your continued support will make it happen!

Pink Persuasion Helps Fight Breast Cancer

Few government agencies reach as many Americans each day as the U.S. Postal Service … and postage stamps provide an opportunity to raise money and awareness in support of important social issues.

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and September sales of the Breast Cancer Research semi-postal stamp have totaled nearly $1.1 million, raising $217,163 for research. This brings the total raised for breast cancer research to $71.1 million since 1998. By law, 70 percent of the net amount raised goes to the National Institutes of Health and 30 percent goes to the Medical Research Program at the Department of Defense.

Sea of Pink Races for the Cure in Miami

USPS Express Dream Team joins the "Sea of Pink" at the "Race for the Cure."
Teammates Kim Person, Carolyn Williams, Terri Ivanoff, and Rose Mesenger-Mannisto stop to pose for photographers.

Terri Ivanoff takes a short break from taking photos of the day's events. Terri also participated in the race.

Teammates Ignacio Camacho, Dorothy Uriarte, Marguerite Goulet, and Damaris Agrait strike a pose for the camera.

Pretti McNeil is one of thousands of race participants who joined the fight against breast cancer.
Seventy-eight postal employees joined 20,000 South Floridians in the "Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure."

How many members of the USPS Express Dream Team can you name? Hint: The youngest teammate is Juan Carlos Nadal, Jr. who is pictured with Mom & Dad, Charisse and JC.

(L to R): USPS Express Dream Team Members Mirtha Uriarte, Gladys Jimenez, Patty Barfield, and Iliana Valdes.

Photos: Donna Demirgian, Marguerite Goulet, Terri Ivanoff

Susan G. Komen fought breast cancer with her heart, body and soul. Throughout her diagnosis, treatments, and endless days in the hospital, she spent her time thinking of ways to make life better for other women battling breast cancer instead of worrying about her own situation.

That concern for others continued even as Susan neared the end of her fight. Moved by Susan’s compassion for others and committed to making a difference, Nancy G. Brinker promised her sister that she would do everything in her power to end breast cancer forever. That promise is now the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure.

Congratulations and thank you to the USPS Express Dream Team for making a difference by participating in this year's race and raising $4,500 to fight breast cancer! Special thanks to Team Captain Marguerite Goulet for coordinating postal participation and to all the employees who supported the team with donations.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Help Round Up MTE for Holiday Season

Each year, the Postal Service spends millions of dollars to replace pallets that leak out of its network. USPS provides pallets to mailers for bulk shipments, but far too often, they’re not returned. With wooden and plastic pallets ranging from $7 to $20 each, losses quickly add up.

Many offices are stepping up to help recover missing pallets, including the Dulles, VA, Air Transport Office (ATO). After ATO employees noticed an increasing volume of pallets in cargo buildings and trucks, they launched an aggressive recovery campaign. Working with the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, they recovered in the past year pallets and other mail transport equipment (MTE) such as flat tubs, worth $120,000.

USPS is experiencing a shortage of MTE. And with the holiday season rapidly approaching, demand for equipment is high. Employees who see postal equipment that is obviously outside the postal network should call the MTE hotline — 866-330-3404 — to pass along information about the location, type and quantities of equipment to be retrieved. In addition to calling the hotline, employees can send information related to equipment recovery to

The Curious Baby and the Avocado Tree

Baby Lola is curious about those large green things hanging from the tree in her grandparents' yard. They feel heavy and warm to the touch ... but Lola's not sure what they are. She does know that Uncle Ernie seems preoccupied posing for the camera and is not the least bit concerned that these larger-than-life-sized avocados could fall from the tree at any moment! Uncle Ernie tells his niece not to worry about the hanging fruit. After all, she is in good hands. Lola and Ernie are the granddaughter and son of Hialeah O-I-C Ernie Cintado.

St Maurice Church to Host Mother Teresa Stamp Dedication at All Saints Day Service

On Sunday, October 31, Fort Lauderdale Postmaster Jerry Long will dedicate the Mother Teresa stamp following the 10:30 am mass at St. Maurice Church, 2851 Stirling Road in Dania. Following the All Saints Day service, the approximate time for the stamp dedication will be 11:45 am.

Mother Teresa, an ethnic Albanian, was born Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu on August 26, 1910, in Skopje in what is now the Republic of Macedonia. Drawn to the religious life as a young girl, she left her home at the age of 18 to serve as a Roman Catholic missionary in India.

“By then I realized my vocation was towards the poor,” she later said. “From then on, I have never had the least doubt of my decision.”

Having adopted the name of Sister Mary Teresa, she arrived in India in 1929 and underwent initial training in religious life at a convent in Darjeeling, north of Calcutta. Two years later, she took temporary vows as a nun before transferring to a convent in Calcutta. She became known as Mother Teresa in 1937, when she took her final vows.

(This dedication is an off-the-clock activity for employees.)

Friday, October 15, 2010

LATINA Style Business Series Comes to Miami

Susan LaChance (L), USPS Vice President, Employee Development and Diversity, presented the Julia De Burgos stamp enlargement to Robert Bard (R), President and CEO, LATINA Style.
(L to R): Hispanic Programs Specialist Jacinto Acebal, Vice President, Employee Development and Diversity Susan LaChance, Human Resources Manager Jann Miller, Senior Plant Manager Jennifer Stevenson, Latina Style CEO and President Robert Bard, and Honorable Congresswoman Iliana Ros-Lehtinen.

GrowGlobal! team members Shipping Solutions Specialist Carlos Berrio (L) and Business Solutions Specialist Edwin Vivas (R) offered global business solutions to customers who visited their booth at the LATINA Style business conference. Other team members --- Hispanic Program Specialist Jacinto Acebal and Customer Relations Coordinator Rose M. Castro (not pictured) --- also shared information with customers. In addition, Carlos gave a presentation, "Your Business Overseas: Global Business Solutions from the U.S. Postal Service.”

(L to R): Senior Plant Manager Jennifer Stevenson, Hispanic Program Specialist Jacinto Acebal, Vice President, Employee Development and Diversity Susan LaChance, and Human Resources Manager Jann Miller pose with the Julia de Burgos stamp poster.

All Photo Credits: Rose M. Castro

LATINA Style Magazine,the first national magazine to address the concerns of contemporary Latina working women in the U.S., hosted a business series celebrating "Latina Professional Empowerment" in Miami this week.
This interactive business development program brought together Latina business owners with key corporations and government agencies --- including the Postal Service --- that provide the products and services for their success. At the conference, the Honorable Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen gave opening remarks. The Congresswoman is the first Hispanic woman and first Cuban-American elected to Congress when elected to represent Florida’s 18th Congressional District in the United States House of Representatives in 1989. A/District Manager Jeff Becker welcomed Vice President, Employee Development and Diversity Susan LaChance who also gave remarks.
Shipping Solutions Specialist Carlos Berrio gave a presentation on how the Postal Service can help business owners expand globally with postal products. Small business owners, in particular, were pleased that he took the guesswork out of shipping overseas; participants were eager to export their products and market their brand internationally.
The District's GrowGlobal! Team (Jacinto Acebal, Carlos Berrio, Rose Castro, and Edwin Vivas) talked with customers and distributed literature on global products at their booth.

It was 45 Years Ago Today ...

Forty-five years ago today, Hispanic Programs Specialist Jacinto Acebal joined the Postal Service as a letter carrier. He quickly became known as "Ace."

Through the years, he advanced into managerial positions including Supervisor, Customer Services, EEO Counselor/Investigator, Human Resources Specialist, and now Hispanic Programs Specialist. He is credited with conducting workshops for entrance exams and participating in several diversity programs in the district. He probably is best known for his promotion of postal products and services in the Hispanic media.

Ace has been recognized for his contributions to the Postal Service and was awarded Federal Employee of the Year – Professional Category, Diversity Vice President Partnership, and the Dot Sharpe Lifetime Achievement.

Ace, congratulations on your career milestone! It's time to start planning next year's 46th anniversary celebration!

"Scanning" the Global Economy

Scanning of Express Mail International is not only a customer expectation, it’s an operational requirement. With the advent of a global marketplace and online purchases, EMI volumes are increasing, and with it, the efficient processing and delivery of these inbound mailpieces represents a potential revenue assurance issue, too.

Missed or inaccurate scanning of EMI can result in lost revenue since agreements between the Postal Service and foreign posts call for adjustments based on performance. Not only that, but once an EMI mailpiece arrives in the U.S. and receives an acceptance scan at one of our five International Service Centers, the service guarantee is the same as domestic Express Mail.

EMI packages often bear unfamiliar markings and multiple barcodes, which can create confusion for employees attempting to identify, separate and make accurate scans on these mailpieces. Some of the inbound EMI pieces have over-labels, which are similar in appearance to domestic Express Mail labels, but are printed in sticker form and placed over the original label or customs form. Over-labeling makes them easy to identify. You simply scan the over-label, capture a signature, and you’re done. If there is no over-label, then the key is to scan the barcode on the customs form.

Phishing Without a Pole

Phishing involves attempting to acquire sensitive information such as usernames, passwords, and credit card details by pretending to be a trustworthy source. Communications purporting to be from popular social websites, auction sites, online payment processors or IT administrators commonly are used to lure the unsuspecting public. Phishing is typically carried out by E-Mail or instant messaging. E-mails with typos, misspellings, and poor grammar are indicators. This fraudulent activity often directs users to enter details at a fake website whose appearance almost is identical to the legitimate site. Don't fall for this bait and get caught!

Getting the Stamp of Approval

When the Postal Service unveiled this year’s stamp program, the 2010 collection included more than 50 commemorative stamps covering 23 subjects. These ranged from honoring Cowboys of the Silver Screen and film star Katharine Hepburn to recognizing the achievements of distinguished sailors and the remarkable athletes who played Negro leagues baseball.

But just who suggests, and finally decides, what subjects and images will be portrayed on these miniature works of art?

For almost all stamp subjects, the process begins with the public. Americans each year submit up to 50,000 written proposals on literally thousands of different topics to the Citizens’ Stamp Advisory Committee (CSAC). This method allows everyone the same opportunity to suggest a new stamp subject. Each suggestion receives equal consideration, regardless of who makes it or how it is presented — by letter, post card or petition.

CSAC members evaluate the merits of all proposals that comply with the selection standards and guidelines. These include general policies that postage stamps primarily feature American or American-related subjects; that no living person be portrayed on U.S. postage; that only events, persons and themes of widespread national appeal and significance will be considered; and that no stamp shall be considered if one treating the same subject has been issued in the past 50 years.

For more on the committee or to submit a stamp idea:

USPS Issues "BOLO" for Missing Equipment

"BOLO" ... Or "Be on the Lookout" ... USPS is experiencing a critical national shortage of letter trays. Out of the 10 million letter trays USPS purchased last year, few remain in Mail Transport Equipment Service Centers (MTESCs), hurting the Postal Service’s ability to keep mailers and plants supplied. USPS is asking offices to search their areas for excess letter trays and immediately send them to their servicing MTESC for redistribution.

In South Florida, there's an "APB" ("All Points Bulletin") for missing General Purpose Mail Containers (GPMCs), sometimes called General Purpose Container, or "GPC" without the "M." Recently, 37 of those large, four-sided metal containers turned up in several delivery units. These empty GPCs were soaking up the sun on the platform or serving as makeshift tables for storage inside Post Offices. All were returned to their respective plants. No questions asked.

And if you see postal equipment being misused in the community, report it to 866-330-3404. USPS spends millions of dollars annually on mail transportation equipment (MTE). In 2009, U.S Postal Inspectors recovered $2.1 million worth of MTE that had either been stolen or was being misused.

Miami-Dade County PCC Meeting is Fri, Nov 5

The Miami-Dade County Postal Customer Council will be meeting on Friday, November 5, from 8:00 am to 9:30 am, in the Postmaster's Conference Room, Miami Plant, 2200 NW 72 Avenue. This workshop will include an overview of the state of the Postal Service, information on ways to save money on mailings, and a demonstration on how to mail packages using your home or office computer! Continental breakfast is included. All for FREE! Register at

That's $70.7 Million for Breast Cancer Research

Few things reach as many Americans each day as the U.S. Mail … and postage stamps provide an opportunity to raise money and awareness in support of important social issues.

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and to date, sales of the Breast Cancer Research semi-postal stamp have raised more than $70.7 million. By law, 70 percent of the net amount raised goes to the National Institutes of Health and 30 percent goes to the Medical Research Program at the Department of Defense.

The 55-cent Breast Cancer Research semi-postal stamp covers First-Class Mail postage and generates funds for this important cause. On July 29, 1998, the first semi-postal stamp in U.S. history --- the Breast Cancer Research stamp --- was issued at the White House. The stamp features artwork of a mythical "goddess of the hunt" by Whitney Sherman of Baltimore.

The Breast Cancer Research semi-postal stamp is available at your local Post Office.