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Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Former OPI Director and The Gotcha Squad Removes Problem Code

Candace McClaren

By The way, Gina Martinez, mentioned in Candace's email,  is no longer the Director of OPI. I met her there, however, before she moved on:

Many months ago I accompanied a discontinued DOE teacher to OPI to discuss her being taken off of the "problem code" list at the DOE.
The interviewer wanted us to check off boxes on a form before talking with her!!! Amazing. We had discussed nothing with her. I asked her why we would check off the boxes saying we had discussed everything with her BEFORE we had done so, and she said, "that's the way we do it here."
I gave her my card, and asked her if we could speak with the Supervisor. She got up and said "wait here".
We did. About 20 minutes.
Suddenly the door to the room swung open, and a woman came running in pointing her pointer finger directly at me, yelling "You know me!!!! You know me!!!!!!"
I looked at her and said that I did not know her.
She said, "I'm on your blog!!!"
I asked her for her name, and she told us, "Gina Martinez."
Then I remembered that indeed, she was on my blog in the sad tale of my friend and former Superintendent Martin Weinstein (former Principal of the UFT Charter School):
I told her that yes, indeed I remembered her name, and she sat down and heard my concerns about the form. Then she asked my teacher what the issue was and immediately removed her from the problem code. We left with a clear record for the teacher.
THANKS, Gina!!!!!
Gina is no longer at OPI (best of luck in your new job!!):

Gina Martinez

Downstate Director - Office of Administrative Hearings at NYS Office of Temporary & Disability Assistance
  1. NYC Department of Education, 
  2. Bronx County District Attorney Office, 
  3. Weitz & Luxenberg
  1. St. John's University School of Law


Deputy Director - Office of Personnel Investigation

NYC Department of Education
   (9 months)Greater New York City Area
Served as the leadership for all personnel investigation matters, including arrests, reassignments, clearances, investigations and information requests from various state and local agencies.

Handled all day-to-day office matters, including supervision, performance management, attendance, timekeeping issues and general human resource strategies.

Reviewed and determined security clearances and appeals for the Arrest and Investigation Units.

Supported the Director in responding to legal inquiries and provided direct support to school networks and the Office of Legal Services on all matters related to DHR employment policies, procedures and systems to ensure all determinations and actions were documented and implemented in a timely manner.

Provided high-level policy input, advice and assistance to the Director of OPI and CEO of DHR.

Advised Director and other agency personnel on various matters, including employment decisions and compliance with state and federal mandates for security clearance procedures. 

Attended high-level cabinet meetings and worked in conjunction with various HR Partners and the Office of Legal Services to ensure that all staff working with DOE students or in DOE facilities obtained and maintained appropriate background clearance. 

Provided ongoing input into internal technology issues and proposed solutions; worked with consultants/vendors/DIIT as needed.

Interviewed and assisted with the hiring and training of new employees.

Attended monthly working group meetings on employee goals, feedback and professional development. 

Facilitated specific trainings to address internal performance issues.

Designed and implemented processes to improve office efficiency and customer service.


NYC Department of Education
   (5 years 4 months)

Manager - Office of Personnel Investigation

NYC Department of Education
   (2 years 3 months)Brooklyn, New York

Assistant District Attorney

Bronx County District Attorney Office
   (4 years)Bronx, New York

Bankruptcy Paralegal

Weitz & Luxenberg
   (1 year)Greater New York City Area