The Foreign Service Impasse Disputes Panel (the Disputes Panel) was created by the Foreign Service Act of 1980. It consists of five part-time members appointed by the Chair of the Foreign Service Labor Relations Board (the FLRA Chair). The Disputes Panel resolves impasses between Federal agencies and Foreign Service personnel in the Agency for International Development and the Departments of State, Agriculture and Commerce over conditions of employment under the Foreign Service Act of 1980. The staff of the Federal Service Impasses Panel supports the Disputes Panel.  The Foreign Service Impasse Disputes Panel consists of the following members.

Mary Jacksteit, who also currently serves as the Chairman of the Federal Service Impasses Panel (FSIP), has over 20 years of experience in mediation, facilitation and negotiation working for non-profit organizations, government agencies and community organizations. Chairman Jacksteit previously served on the Panel for seven years during President Clinton’s Administration. She began her legal career as a labor attorney for the American Federation of Government Employees, AFL-CIO, where she later served as Deputy General Counsel.

Betty Bolden served previously as the Chair of the FSIP, having been appointed by President Clinton on October 4, 1994. On January 11, 1995, she was reappointed for a full 5-year term. Prior to her appointment, Ms. Bolden was a career Federal employee of the Department of Labor (DOL), rising to the level of Associate Deputy Secretary of Labor in 1993, where she acted as liaison to DOL program agencies and the Deputy Secretary. Ms. Bolden has a wealth of Federal sector experience in the areas of administration, personnel, and labor-management relations. She has been a part-time self-employed dealer of out-of-print books since 1988, and is a resident of the District of Columbia.

Diane T. McFadgen is currently employed with the DOL where she serves as the National Employee Relations Program Manager and the Acting Director of the Office of Employee and Labor-Management Relations in the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Administration and Management. Ms. McFadgen’s experience in labor-management relations and 3rd-party representation was attained from various positions in several agencies in the Federal sector, including the Department of the Navy, U. S. Patent and Trademark Office, Department of Agriculture, and the Department of Veterans Affairs. She served in various positions including, but not limited to, Chief, Benefits and Performance, Chief Negotiator and Labor Relations Officer, Supervisory Personnel Management Specialist, Supervisory Human Resources Specialist (Labor and Employee Relations), and National Agency Representative before the FLRA, Merit Systems Protection Board, and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Ms. McFadgen brings to the FSIDP over 18 years of experience and a wealth of knowledge in labor-management relations and dispute resolution.

Jonita Whitaker assumed the position of Foreign Policy Advisor (POLAD) Director in June 2008 following her graduation from senior training at the National Defense University in Washington, D.C. Her previous assignments overseas include Khartoum, Sudan, as management counselor; Maputo, Mozambique, as management officer; Bamako, Mali, as financial management officer; and Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, as human resources manager. Ms. Whitaker’s domestic assignments include serving as desk officer in the Sudan Program Groups, as program management officer for South Asia in the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement, and as foreign policy advisor as a Pearson Fellow in the office of Congressman Donald Payne (D–NJ). Prior to joining the Department of State, Ms. Whitaker served with the city of Sacramento as a personnel analyst. Her educational background includes a B.S. degree in psychology magna cum laude from the University of the Philippines, a Master of Public Administration degree from the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs at the University of Pittsburgh, and a Master of National Security Resource Strategy from the National Defense University. Ms. Whitaker is an alumna of the National Preparedness Leadership Initiative (NPLI) at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. She speaks Portuguese, Visayan, Spanish, and Tagalog. During her career she has earned numerous honor and service awards, including the 2006 ICASS Leadership Award.

Alexandria L. Panehal is a Senior Foreign Service officer with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). Her most recent overseas assignment was as the USAID Mission Director for Ecuador. Other overseas assignments include Kyiv, Ukraine as Deputy Mission Director for the Regional Mission for Ukraine, Moldova and Belarus; Managua, Nicaragua as Director of the Democracy Office, Tegucigalpa, Honduras as the Director of the Regional Housing and Urban Development Office for Central America; Tunis, Tunisia with the Regional Housing and Urban Development Office for the Near East; Bangkok, Thailand with the Regional Housing and Urban Development Office for Asia, and with the Bureau for Eastern Europe and the NIS as Deputy Director of the Environment team. Upon returning from Ecuador to Washington, DC in August, 2009, Ms. Panehal was Acting Deputy Assistant Administrator for USAID’s Economic Growth, Agriculture and Trade Bureau, managing Agency worldwide programs related to education, women in development, and infrastructure, engineering and energy. She is currently Director of the Office of Infrastructure and Engineering. In addition, since the January 2009 earthquake in Haiti, Ms. Panehal has been assisting the Agency in the design and implementation of shelter and infrastructure reconstruction efforts. Ms. Panehal has a Bachelor of Science in Foreign Service from Georgetown University, a Master’s in Public Administration from the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, and a Master’s in National Security Strategy from the National War College. Ms. Panehal speaks French and Spanish.