Every March, people across the nation celebrate Women in Construction Week to raise awareness and recognize the work of women across all levels and sectors of the industry.

Women play a valuable role across the construction industry, yet make up only 11% of all employees.

As companies continue to struggle to find skilled workers amid labor shortages and studies continue to discover the positive impacts of diversity and inclusion, it is becoming more important than ever to draw women and girls into the construction industry.

This month and every month, American Constructors is proud to celebrate the women who keep our jobsites running and contribute to our daily success.

American Constructors also is proud to mentor women and girls interested in various aspects of the construction industry through our annual high school learning week and college internship programs.

Keep reading to learn more about some of the women on our team:

Belinda Santolucito

Current Role: Business Development
Previous AC Roles: Intern, Field Engineer, Project Manager and Preconstruction Project Manager

What is your favorite part of your job?
I love the variety of tasks that I get to work on as well as the different teams and people I get to work with!

What makes you proud of working in the construction industry?
I’m proud of the skills I have learned while working in the construction industry and of the buildings and structures I have helped bring to fruition. I’m also proud to be an example for other women interested in this industry.

How do you think the construction industry can attract more women?
I think construction can attract more women candidates by providing awareness that these positions exist to our young female elementary school, middle school and high school aged students.

What advice would you give to a young woman entering the industry?
The advice I would give to a young woman entering the industry is to be confident, seek opportunities, ask questions, have a good work-life balance, and help empower and mentor others as you advance in your career.

Cindy Evans

Current Role: Warranty Admin
Previous AC Role: Field Admin

What is your favorite part of your job?
I have learned from some amazing project managers and superintendents that has helped me be able to do my job in warranty.

What makes you proud of working in the construction industry?
If you love what you do, then you are proud of what you do.

How do you think the construction industry can attract more women?
If you have a passion in building and seeing something come together from start to finish then in a larger scale then this is something for you.

What advice would you give to a young woman entering the industry?
If you have the passion in your heart and mind, then go for it. Just remember it is not a bed of roses… You need tough skin!

Chelsea Hass

Current Role: Project Admin
Previous AC Role: Assistant to Business Development and Marketing

What is your favorite part of your job?
The people and the challenge.

What makes you proud of working in the construction industry?
Seeing the work that we do and the positive impact it has on the community makes me proud. My daughter loves saying, “Mommy’s work built my school!”

How do you think the construction industry can attract more women?
Seeing more women in the industry gives women more confidence that they can do it themselves also.

What advice would you give to a young woman entering the industry?
Go for it; take the chance. You’ll get to meet some amazing people.

Danielle Winstead

Current Role: Graphic Designer and Marketing Coordinator

What is your favorite part of your job?
The best part is having a direct say in the branding/identity of the company – that I get to have the opportunity to work with a business in how it showcases its identity and to guide their image to best fit the business strategy. I came from an advertising agency background – so stepping into this industry was very different than what I had experience in previously. My background gives me the benefit to do what I do in an objective way – which allows for “a fresh pair of eyes” on how our messaging and brand identity is displayed.

What makes you proud of working in the construction industry?
There are major changes happening in this region with an explosion of growth and innovation taking place – it feels great to be a part of that growth directly.

How do you think the construction industry can attract more women?
I think we need to focus on inclusivity and think beyond the limited stereotypes. The ways the public thinks of the construction industry are based on these stereotypes, so to change public perception that change needs to come from within the industry. We can do this by getting involved in CTE programs in schools early, showcasing more women in promotional materials and events, and making it a point to recruit people from diverse backgrounds.

What advice would you give to a young woman entering the industry?
Think beyond stereotypes. If you enjoy something, do it. People respect and appreciate those who work hard for what they are passionate about and will help you along the way. Success comes in many forms; there is no one-size-fits-all on the path to success.

Casandra York-Brugnone

Current Role: Job Site Admin
Previous Industry Role: Utilities Equipment Repairer

What is your favorite part of your job?
The American Constructors team will always answer questions. It doesn’t matter what aspect of the industry you have questions on they are more than happy to share.

What makes you proud of working in the construction industry?
What we build will support the communities we work in for years to come. You get to see daily progress and it’s never a dull moment.

How do you think the construction industry can attract more women?
Construction companies should be mindful of the job description, so it emphasizes a diverse and inclusive listing. A mentorship program could be offered for young girls provided by women already in the industry. Companies with college recruiting should recruit from campuses that support and have high female populations in engineering or construction studies.

What advice would you give to a young woman entering the industry?
Learn the project and your scope of work better than anyone else. Be open and curious minded. Trust your knowledge and yourself. Also, never hesitate to ask questions to expand your knowledge or ask for advice. It doesn’t matter what industry you are focused on, asking questions is an excellent way to build trust and establish relationships. Don’t forget to share what you have learned. Don’t let anyone assume your skillset.

Rebecca Beach

Current Role: Operations Admin
Previous AC Roles: Field Admin

What is your favorite part of your job?
I have to pick just one? There are so many things that I enjoy, from having a glimpse into the progress of a project through the documentation side of things to being able to work on some incredibly cool software that facilitates construction.

What makes your proud of working in the construction industry?
I was raised by a mom who always was renovating the house. Always. It’s great to work in an industry that is tied to amazing childhood memories.

How do you think the construction industry can attract more women?
First off, we have to stop telling girls that they aren’t good at math and science. My daughter has always had an aptitude towards those and is a natural outside-the-box thinker. She’s trying to figure out exactly what in construction she wants to do, but she’s pretty sure it’s the best outlet for her creativity.

What advice would you give to a young woman entering the industry?
Believe in yourself. There is a lot to learn, but you also have a lot to contribute.

Hope Lenamon

Current Role: Communications Specialist

What is your favorite part of your job?
I love touring our active jobsites and seeing how the efforts of all my fellow teammates makes a facility come to life – from project proposals to grand openings.

What makes your proud of working in the construction industry?
American Constructors is doing so much more than constructing buildings. We are helping build the future of our community. It’s amazing to get to communicate the stories of people and places that come from that.

How do you think the construction industry can attract more women?
Change starts young. Many kids gain an interest in STEM subjects during their pre-teen years. But statistically, girls lose interest in these subjects by the time they turn 15-years-old due to a lack of the same level of support and encouragement their male counterparts receive. As adults, we must push ourselves to help keep that spark alive and not think in stereotypes or binaries.

As an industry, construction must fully and unapologetically protect, support, advocate for and celebrate women in construction. Show the next generation of girls interested in construction that they will be truly respected as equals when they enter the field.

What advice would you give to a young woman entering the industry?
Find a mentor who has been where you are and have realistic conversations about what experiences might be ahead of you. And, always work in a way that creates space for voices often pushed out of conversations to be heard.

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