Lifelong Army Civilian Organizes Sexual Assault Awareness Program

(CRANE) – Crane Army Ammunition Activity’s greatest strength is in its people and making sure those people are supported and protected from threats. That’s why CAAA invests in a strong Sexual Harassment and Assault Response Program and also why it annually participates in the Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month

This year Crane Army’s SAAPM events were organized by its Sexual Assault Response Coordinator Donaval Avila Martinez. Hired in January, Martinez was critical in the planning of CAAA’s SAAPM events in coordination with its Crane Navy partners.

Crane Army Ammunition Activity Sexual Assault Response Coordinator Donaval Avila Martinez works from his office at home in compliance with coronavirus protection measures. Martinez continues to provide support to victims of sexual assault and educate the workforce on sexual assault prevention. Photo provided by Avila Martinez

“The events show solidarity,” said Avila Martinez. “It sends the message that everyone supports this goal and that we are all in this together and won’t tolerate sexual assault.”

SAAPM events were developed with health and safety measures in response to the coronavirus outbreak in mind. These events included encouraging employees to wear denim and teal, SHARP’s official color, and drive with car headlights on to “shine a light” on sexual assault.

“Protecting our workforce is always Crane Army’s first priority and that includes protecting them from sexual assault. Sexual Assault damages our ability to contribute to our mission and has no place at Crane Army,” CAAA Commander Col. Stephen Dondero said. “We are grateful to have someone with Donaval’s energy and passion help to keep our people safe.”

Avila Martinez said that Crane Army’s dedication to supporting its workforce and SAAPM means that the program’s messages can go further in protecting CAAA employees and raising awareness for sexual assault.

“I hope people see that our leadership supports the program and it’s something they feel strongly about,” Avila Martinez said. “I hope they see that this is important and want to help keep sexual assault out of Crane Army.”

Equal Employment Opportunity Officer Angel Rudd said that Avila Martinez has brought not just his experience as SARC to the program, but an approach that focuses on trust and relationships.

“He’s been out there doing walk-throughs, talking to people face to face, and building relationships with employees,” Rudd said. “He does a great job of ensuring that everyone from management to the workforce feels comfortable talking to him.”

Avila Martinez brings with him his prior, uniformed experience to help him help others. Before joining Crane Army, he served as an active duty Soldier for 23 years for the 177th Armored Brigade, three of which were as their SARC. Ultimately though, his goal is to not be needed in this role any longer.

“I feel strongly about the program and want to do something to help the victims and prevent sexual assault. I am ready to be as proactive as possible,” Avila Martinez said. “The goal, as counterintuitive as it seems, is to work myself out of a job. I want to stay in the program so I can make as much of a difference as I can.”

Crane Army Ammunition Activity produces and provides conventional munitions in support of U.S. Army and Joint Force readiness. It is part of the Joint Munitions Command and the U.S. Army Materiel Command, which include arsenals, depots, activities and ammunition plants. Established Oct. 1977, it is located on Naval Support Activity Crane.

Story by Mallory Haag, Crane Army Ammunition Activity.