This week we celebrate Women in Construction Week (WIC) and the many women who work in and make important contributions to our industry every day! We are pleased to share the stories from many of the women who work and live in NH and VT. The project was created in partnership with I Build NH and NAWIC Granite State Chapter.
As an Army Veteran with two tours in Iraq, I learned quickly the value of well-placed logistics support. The construction industry was a natural fit for me coming out of active duty service. I started with United Site Services, working with my customers to prepare and support well planned jobsites, meeting their temporary needs for sanitation with a wide variety of options.
By joining the construction industry, I was able to transition into a civilian life that allowed me to operate in a fast paced, exciting and challenging environment, much like the one the military provided. Working with various General Contractors, Builders and Event Coordinators, I have had the privilege of learning so many facets of the industry. Constantly on the road, visiting my customer’s job sites and seeing what we can do to make the onsite safety, temporary services and daily production better each day is a huge part of what keeps me in the career I love!
Education and Training:
I have a Bachelor’s of Science in Economics from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, and I am currently working towards an MBA.
I have served in the Army for 23 years, with 20 of them as a Commissioned Officer. I currently serve as an Assistant Professor of Military Science at Harvard / MIT, helping young Cadets learn the fundamentals of being a military officer and what it means to serve our Nation.
How did you find yourself working in the construction industry?
I left active duty military service and was recruited by a large construction equipment rental company to head their government sales territory in Washington, D.C. The experience was unlike any I had ever had, and I learned quickly that working with project managers, estimators and general contractors was both challenging and rewarding. I love having a small part in seeing something big come together, and construction gives me just that opportunity!
What do you enjoy most about your career?
The fast paced environment! Watching a project come to life, from inception, through the building phase and on to completion. I love that there is always another exciting start just around the corner. The chance to learn, grow and work with so many types of builders is exceptional!
What’s the most interesting project you’ve worked on?
At my company, we had a chance to help reconfigure the water and restroom systems for a very complex job in downtown Boston. The project lasted over a year as the public transportation terminal was renovated and updated. We were tasked with finding creative solutions to provide around the clock restroom trailer and service, while operating in a less than optimally sized space. The urban variable of the project made it a challenge to coordinate 6 times per day services, but we were successfully able to accommodate the customers changing needs and the project finished ahead of time and budget! We were delighted to be the team to successfully provide complex solutions to such a highly visible and heavily trafficked site!
What advice do you have for women who want to work in the construction industry?
Be determined, be competitive and be the person who anticipates the next step in the project and gets on board to make it happen. Understanding the steps and the process go a long way.
One of the most critical components to this industry is learning on the job, so find yourself a mentor who can genuinely help you pursue your ambitions. And as you move up and learn more each day, reach back and bring the next young, ambitious lady along with you.
Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) is a national construction industry trade association representing nearly 21,000 chapter members. Founded on the merit shop philosophy, ABC and its 70 chapters help members develop people, win work and deliver that work safely, ethically, profitably and for the betterment of the communities in which ABC and its members work. ABC's membership represents all specialties within the U.S. construction industry and is comprised primarily of firms that perform work in the industrial and commercial sectors.
I Build New Hampshire
I Build NH represents the construction sector of the state through the Sector Partnerships Initiative (SPI). I Build NH represents companies involved in heavy construction like municipal water treatment systems and road building, electric and telecommunication infrastructure, civil engineering, heating/ventilation/air conditioning businesses and more.
National Association of Women in Construction
The National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC) has over 115 chapters throughout the United States, including the NAWIC Granite State Chapter. NAWIC provides its members with opportunities for professional development, education, networking, leadership training, public service and more. NAWIC advocates for the value and impact of women builders, professionals and tradeswomen in all aspects of the construction industry.