When Terence Hudson joined U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) in New Orleans Field Office as the new Assistant Director Field Operations (ADFO), he did not realize that he would be the first African-American to hold that management position.
“My parents instilled in me to always strive for excellence. I was taught to always give one-hundred and ten percent in everything I attempted, and while in the military, I was taught preparation-plus-opportunity, equals success (POS). I apply this acronym to my everyday challenges to this very day, and it has helped shape my life and career thus far.
I strive to be a positive role model for all employees within CBP, especially for people of color. I want them to see that it is attainable to work at senior level positions within the agency. I am proof that it’s possible and I work diligently at improving operations and meeting CBP’s mission and goals.”
ADFO Hudson said he had two goals in mind when coming to New Orleans: mission and relationships. “I want to lead by example and provide guidance and direction to the employees who work for me and be a stable source of assistance to my coworkers, law enforcement partners, and stakeholders,” he said. “Secondly, I want to ensure that I and the staff are in step with the vision of the Director, to ensure we move the agency in the right direction going forward.”
As ADFO, he oversees all enforcement activities in the New Orleans Area of Responsibility, which encompasses 18 ports of entry within Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Tennessee. He also coordinates law enforcement functions with federal, state, and local agencies in each state, and oversees trade operations, including international cargo entering and exiting the ports of entry.
While New Orleans is a diverse city, it is majority African American, and the United States is a country where the employees of government resemble the populations they serve. The city is populated with those coming from all different walks of life and reasons for living and working there. ADFO Hudson has lived and worked abroad, and believes that experience working with a range of people from different backgrounds and cultural experiences will help tremendously.
“I feel as though the diversity I bring to the New Orleans Field Office will enhance operations and inspire employees of color that possibilities to promote and elevate within CBP are very real and attainable.”
The New Orleans field office where he works is located in the historic U.S. Custom House on Canal Street. It is one of the oldest and most important federal buildings in the southern United States and one of the major works of architecture commissioned by the federal government in the nineteenth century.