Meet Pedro Villacorta
Senior IT Project Manager, and Retired Master Chief Petty Officer in the United States Navy
Pedro served in the United States Naval Reserves from 1992 to 2013. He enlisted as an Engineering Aide with the Seabees and finished his naval career as a Master Chief Petty Officer. He was stationed in Alameda and Treasure Island in California, Orlando and Jacksonville in Florida, and in Atlanta. In 2000, Pedro joined KP as a programmer and eventually transitioned into a project management role.
Joining the military was always on his radar:
“Growing up, I was always excited about joining the military, so when I moved to the United States, I didn’t waste any time seeking out a military recruiter. My recruiter suggested the Seabees, the construction forces within the Navy, so I could take advantage of my training and experience as an electrical engineer. I spent 21 years with the Seabees and greatly value the people I met and the training and skills I received. Living and working in different geographic areas and cultures gave me a tolerance and deeper understanding of our nation and citizens.”
The military helped hone the critical soft skills:
“The military helped me develop solid technical and project management skills that have been extremely valuable in my personal and professional life. Building relationships is the key to success. Instead of barking orders, you negotiate and build and maintain trust. If you don’t have the respect of your direct reports and your superiors, your requests are put at the bottom of the pile and you’re pushed to the back of the line.
I was able to bridge the gap between the troops and the commanding officer because I had a solid relationship with both sides. The troops trusted me with information about what wasn’t working well and what they needed to be successful because I had a history of listening and responding to concerns.”
He recognizes the value of giving back:
“I’m a member of my local KP Veterans Association and we started supporting the Veterans Association Clinic in Decatur in 2015. To date, we’ve added more than 2,500 books to their library and provided more than $5,000 worth of comfort kits and socks and 100 public transit cards to help veterans travel from their homes to the clinic. I also volunteer alongside many other veterans with the Knights of Columbus to support veterans of all ages at the Purple Heart Association. We collect items and partner with the Decatur VA Clinic to supply books, toiletries, and other items to those in need. We also provide a Color Guard for celebrations and special events organized by various veteran organizations. All of this is made possible by veterans and the KP family giving back.”
The Navy led him to Georgia:
“I’ve travelled through 26 states and lived in several, including Georgia, California, Florida, and Alaska, and I have to say that Georgia is my favorite by far. I was stationed in Atlanta from 1998 to 2006 and I currently live in Cumming, which is part of the Atlanta metropolitan area. Georgia is famous for Southern charm and hospitality, but I don’t think people realize how diverse Georgia in population, food, and culture. It also has great parks, outdoor activities, and beaches.”
Advice for Transitioning Veterans Interested in Kaiser Permanente’s Opportunities
“Get involved early to expand and build your support network. The KP Veterans Association is a great place to start, but also explore external veteran organizations and ask your colleagues with military connections about their transition experiences. If you’re applying for a job here, don’t disregard your military experience just because it doesn’t match what’s listed in a job description. Use the Military Skill Translator when applying and make sure recruiters and hiring managers understand your military experience. Be more specific about how you accomplished tasks and projects in the military.”