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Wanda Rogers might not known outside the confines of her position at the U.S. Treasury, but her story is worth sharing. Ms. Rogers achieved a series of firsts within the Treasury Department, rising from an entry-level position into one of the most powerful positions with the federal agency.

A native of Pleasantville, N.J., Rogers graduated from Rider University in 1979. Her initial career path was to become a teacher. Instead she took a job at the Treasury as a secretary, making significant strides despite her non-executive start.

Rogers was the first African-American to become a deputy commissioner with the now-defunct Financial Management Service. She is also the first African-American to serve as the federal agency’s assistant commissioner and its U.S. Chief Disbursement Officer. Essentially, Rogers was part of a management team responsible for disbursing 85 percent of the federal government’s payments.

Along with the aforementioned achievements, Rogers was first African-American woman to hold a position within the federal government’s Senior Executive Service. Presently, Rogers is the Deputy Commissioner for the Bureau of the Fiscal Service, overseeing a staff of over 1,400.

In an interview with her undergraduate alma mater, Rogers shared that she was often the only Black person on the job but maintained her focus on personal success. She credited her time at Rider, along with two high school teachers and her guidance counselor, for her current place in life.

Rogers returned to school while working and raising a family, earning her master’s degree in 1997 from the University of Maryland at College Park.

Rogers’ husband, Terry, was also a student at Rider, and the pair have raised three daughters together. Despite her achievements, Rogers says that her children are her greatest accomplishment.

(Photo: Rider University)

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