Building Leadership: Conference for Women in Architecture, Engineering & Construction (AEC)
April 20-21, 2017
Chicago, IL

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Overview

We are pleased to announce our inaugural event, the Building Leadership: Women in Architecture, Engineering & Construction (AEC), taking place in Chicago on April 20th and 21st, 2017. This conference will bring together both women and men across related sectors in the AEC industry, leading the way on diversity and inclusion issues. Come network with top professionals in the industry regarding the most pertinent developments in AEC, and discuss the challenges of diversity in a traditionally male-dominated sector. Here we will cover strategies for leveraging both professional development resources in addition to technical advances in AEC to invoke change for diversity and inclusion. This event will ensure both women and men are prepared in the changing environment, and leave with the tools necessary to both continue the gender conversation in a solution-focused way, and utilize new developments and trends within AEC to help advance in this career despite any roadblocks.

Learning Outcomes

  • Implement strategies for continuing the gender conversation in the workplace
  • Analyze women’s progress in AEC and the barriers that have already been broken down to find out what still needs to be done
  • Compare the men’s perspective in the AEC industry to the female experience, and discuss strategies for how this side can help effect change
  • Design a solution-oriented plan to bridge gender and generational differences by uncovering the effects of implicit bias
  • Leverage committee work, mentorship, and women’s resource groups for career advancement
  • Evaluate new developments in sustainability and resiliency issues, and project management techniques to lead their implementation
  • Define practical applications for technical developments in AEC, and how these technologies can most effectively be utilized
  • Assess the economic and business-focused benefits for diversity in the workplace

Credits

EUCI has been accredited as an Authorized Provider by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET).  In obtaining this accreditation, EUCI has demonstrated that it  complies with the ANSI/IACET Standard which is recognized internationally as a standard of good practice. As a result of their Authorized Provider status, EUCI is authorized to offer IACET CEUs for its programs that qualify under the ANSI/IACET Standard.

EUCI is authorized by IACET to offer 1.0 CEUs for this event.

 

Requirements for Successful Completion of Program

Participants must sign in/out each day and be in attendance for the entirety of the conference to be eligible for continuing education credits.

Instructional Methods

PowerPoint presentations, keynote presentations, and panel discussions will be used in this program.

Agenda

Thursday, April 20, 2017

7:30 – 8:00 a.m. :: Registration and Continental Breakfast

 

8:00 – 8:15 a.m. :: Conference Welcome

Conference Chair:

Aleisha Jaeger, Construction Director, Gilbane Building Company

 

8:15 – 10:00 a.m. :: The Economic Case for Inclusiveness, and Exploring Best Practices and Roadblocks for Implementation

The push towards diversity in most industries has made its way forward, but understanding the economic implications will explain the critical nature of increasing women’s involvement within AEC. By growing the number of women succeeding in AEC, we will cover how product quality and ultimate profitability can be improved dramatically.

  • The business case for diversity with respect to including women and minorities in the decision-making process
  • The effects diversity has on both creativity and innovation
  • Variable perspectives rounding out the quality of the overall product created for clients
  • Understanding the long-term effects diversity has on the lifecycle of an AEC business
  • Stating your opinion: understanding why, regardless of background, your opinion is necessary for creating the best final product possible, and the nuanced challenges of introverts vs. extroverts
  • Tactics for being a change agent and stating the economic value of your contributions
  • A growing global marketplace and strategically hiring to represent a diverse clientele base

We just heard all the positive effects increasing diversity in AEC has on profitability and product quality, but the problem persists. We will attempt to answer the question as to why these changes haven’t been implemented and what is holding some companies back, practices that are hindering diversity and inclusion in AEC, and how these practices might be redirected to create a positive workplace atmosphere for all employees.

Moderator:

Aleisha Jaeger, Construction Director, Gilbane Building Company

Panelists:

Tracy Young, Co-Founder and CEO, PlanGrid

Gloria Shealey, President and CEO, The Daniele Company

Barbara Bouza, Managing Director, Principal, Gensler

Renita Mollman, Vice President and General Manager, Burns & McDonnell

10:00 – 10:30 a.m. :: Networking Break

10:30 – 11:00 a.m. :: Keynote Presentation: The Beauty and Challenges of the Work-Life Imbalance

Kim Wright, CEO, Wright Commissioning

11:00 a.m.  – 12:00 p.m. :: Reality Check: How Far Women Have Come, and Lingering Workplace Challenges
  • Uncovering current challenges in transparency on pay and negotiating tactics
  • Understanding the difference between required experience and building confidence
  • The continued problem of caregiving juxtaposed with career advancement: do women need to make the choice?
  • Current best hiring practices, and what top companies are doing now to push for diversity
  • Solving the inconsistency between AEC graduation rates those that stay in the career
  • Finding the right work-life integration and developing time and project management skills to keep women on the AEC track to success
  • Examining how these women have gotten where they are in the industry, and exploring where to go next
  • Understanding implicit bias, and the effect it has on women’s career choices, even within AEC
  • Challenges in diversity beyond women: inclusion for LGBT and minorities in AEC, and the effect this has on the workplace

Moderator:
Jacki Warner, HR Manager, Michels Corp.

Panelists:
Gwen Searer, Associate Principal, Wiss, Janney, and Elstner Associates

Stacy Guercia, President, CEO, and Chairman, Triton Builders

Katherine Warzynski, Project Engineer, Kiewit

12:00 – 1:15 p.m. :: Group Luncheon

1:15 – 2:45 p.m. :: Bringing Men to the Table: Continuing the Gender Conversation, and Effectively Creating Change within Your Organization
  • Men’s perspective on women’s gender issues in the workplace, and continuing the conversation to make a change
  • Becoming aware of unconscious bias and the effect this has on success within AEC as a whole
  • Techniques for talking about gender equity in a solution-driven way, meaningful to the advancement of both sides
  • Understanding the communication techniques of both men and women, and how to navigate those gaps in reading signals, listening techniques, and natural reactions
  • Looking at what men are doing now to help remove these barriers, and what more could be done to help maintain women in the profession
  • Exploring the process for reverse mentoring and what both sides can bring to the other
  • Discussing the role of employee resource groups and the value they have in the workplace: do these safe spaces encourage inclusiveness, or do they just create further division?
  • The process for creating an employee resource group within your own organization

Moderator:

Allison Gries, Manager, OE Strategic Initiatives, AECOM

Panelists:

Mike Bellaman, CEO, Associated Builders and Contractors

Paul Hewins, Co-Chief Operating Officer, Skanska

Brian Kundert, Senior Vice President of HR, Arcadis

Alfredo Mendez, Senior Director – Talent Management, Diversity and Organization Effectiveness, AECOM

2:45 – 3:15 p.m. :: Networking Break

3:15 – 4:30 p.m. :: The Move Forward: Sustainability & Resiliency in Infrastructure & Design
  • Discussing the evolution of the project planning process to include new resiliency initiatives – focus on: site selection, licensing, contractors, engineering management, and stakeholder interaction
  • Strategies for how to increase efficiency while enhancing public safety across communities
  • Parsing the necessary technical challenges in green infrastructure and updating outdated structures pulling from the grid
  • The impact of evolving team relations and accreditation requirements for engineers and architects
  • Loading standards and requirements for analysis and design of buildings and infrastructure
  • Understanding how these new codes and regulations will impact your design or structure, and how to most effectively merge client needs with compliance
  • The response to climate change: what steps firms are proactively taking to protect the integrity of new construction and retrofitting old buildings and infrastructure
  • Utilizing these new initiatives and advancements to lead these practices in your own firm

Fiona Cousins, Fellow, Principal, Mechanical Engineering and Sustainability Consulting, Arup

April Hughes, Owner and Managing Principal, HPZS Architects

Rachel Minnery, Senior Director of Sustainable Development Policy, AIA

4:30 – 5:30 p.m. :: Cocktail Reception
plan_grid_logo Sponsored by PlanGrid


Friday, April 21, 2017

7:30 – 8:00 a.m. :: Continental Breakfast

8:00 – 9:00 a.m. :: Keynote Presentation – The Value of Research, Hard Skills, and Emotional Intelligence for Success

Sara Ross, Senior Research Consulting Partner, Institute for Health and Human Potential (IHHP) 

9:00 – 10:15 a.m. :: The Generation Gap: Understanding the Changing Perceptions of Gender’s Role in the Workplace
  • Strengthening your personal identity to find success within a male-dominated industry
  • Casting off roles and responsibilities that have traditionally been assigned to women
  • Discussing the perception of weakness and strength across generations in AEC
  • The perception of women’s resource groups, and how they could appear as another form of exclusivity compared to a necessary support system
  • Celebrating the differences of women and the contributions they make to the workplace as a benefit and an asset
  • Cross-generational perceptions of diversity, mentorship, and leadership
  • Parsing which programs have been tangibly successful and can be widely implemented
  • Exploring the reasons women are leaving the industry, and what can be done to prevent it

Moderator:

Zoe Markwick, Commercial Director, Skanska

Panelists:

Yolanda Cole, Senior Principal and Owner, Hickok Cole Architects

Laura Farthing, Senior Engineer, Eugene Water & Electric Board

Gabrielle Bullock, Director of Global Diversity, Perkins & Will

Ann-Marie Jennette, Project Manager, Suffolk Construction

10:15 – 10:45 a.m. :: Networking Break

10:45 – 11:30 a.m. :: A Realistic Look at the Future of AEC in Technology, Equipment, and Instrumentation
  • Exploring new and innovative technologies in the AEC industry, and how each of them are affecting future designs and constructions. Focus on:
    • 3D rendering, the visualization of future projects and selling it to clients and investors
    • The economical use of UAV’s in site selection and project planning
    • Understanding how automated vehicles would change infrastructure, traffic engineering and transit systems
    • Using point clouds, project management software, and laser scanning technology: exploring their applications and limitations within the AEC sector
  • Taking a realistic look at each of these technologies and expectations for the future of innovation: which of these can economically be implemented now, and which need more development?
  • Strategies for using data analytics, necessary sensors, and error analysis in current projects and advancing these programs and economic benefits within your own firm

Jen Suerth, Vice President of Technical Services, Pepper Construction

11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. :: Collaboration between Sectors and Genders for the Best Results
  • Parsing collaboration as a means to achieving new innovation and creativity
  • Diversifying contributing views to develop a more well-rounded project and discussion
  • The process for supporting women in the AEC fields
  • Overcoming the “imposter syndrome” and the challenge of repeatedly proving yourself to belong
  • Highlighting professional women in the trades and their contributions to new developments
  • Individual challenges in regards to safety standards and gender issues women in the trades face
  • Understanding the role of all professionals involved from concept through construction, and how collaboration between sectors and genders affects the ultimate bottom line
  • Collaboration between each side of an integrated project delivery (IPD) contract, and the benefits that result from sharing responsibilities and risk
  • A look at the opportunities in public-private partnerships and if this is the model for the future

Mary Brush, Principal, Architect, Brush Architects

Barbara Wagner, Senior Vice President, Clark Construction

Colleen Layman, Vice President, Resource Business Group Water Principal, HDR

Elizabeth Velez, President and Chief Contract Administrator, The Velez Organization

 12:30 p.m. :: Conference Adjourns

Speakers

Mike Bellaman, CEO, Associated Builders and Contractors

Barbara Bouza, Managing Director, Principal, Gensler

Mary Brush, Principal, Architect, Brush Architects

Gabrielle Bullock, Director of Global Diversity, Perkins & Will

Yolanda Cole, Senior Principal and Owner, Hickok Cole Architects

Fiona Cousins, Fellow, Principal, Mechanical Engineering and Sustainability Consulting, Arup

Laura Farthing, Senior Engineer, Eugene Water & Electric Board

Allison Gries, Manager, OE Strategic Initiatives, AECOM

Stacy Guercia, President, CEO, and Chairman, Triton Builders

Paul Hewins, Co-Chief Operating Officer, Skanska

April Hughes, Owner and Managing Principal, HPZS Architects

Aleisha Jaeger, Construction Director, Gilbane Building Company

Ann-Marie Jennette, Project Manager, Suffolk Construction

Brian Kundert, Senior Vice President of HR, Arcadis

Colleen Layman, Vice President, Resource Business Group Water Principal, HDR

Alfredo Mendez, Senior Director – Talent Management, Diversity and Organization Effectiveness, AECOM

Rachel Minnery, Senior Director of Sustainable Development Policy, AIA

Renita Mollman, Vice President and General Manager, Burns & McDonnell

Sara Ross, Senior Research Consulting Partner, Institute for Health and Human Potential (IHHP) 

Gwen Searer, Associate Principal, Wiss, Janney, and Elstner Associates

Gloria Shealey, President, CEO, and Chairman, The Daniele Company

Jen Suerth, Vice President of Technical Services, Pepper Construction

Barbara Wagner, Senior Vice President, Clark Construction

Jacki Warner, HR Manager, Michels Corp.

Katherine Warzynski, Project Engineer, Kiewit

Kim Wright, CEO, Wright Commissioning

Elizabeth Velez, President and Chief Contract Administrator, The Velez Organization

Tracy Young, Co-Founder and CEO, PlanGrid

Location

Millennium Knickerbocker Hotel
163 E Walton Place
Chicago, IL 60611

To reserve your room, please call 1-312-751-8100 or book online here.
Please indicate that you are with the EUCI group to receive the group rate.

Room Rate:

The room rate is $139.00 single or double plus applicable taxes.

Room Block Dates:

A room block has been reserved for the nights of April 19 – 20, 2017.

Rate Available Until:

Make your reservations prior to March 27, 2017. There are a limited number of rooms available at the conference rate. Please make your reservations early.

Register

Event Standard RateAttendees
Proceedings package US $ 295.00
Sponsored By
Michels Corporation  plan_grid_logo    
Supporting Organizations   
 Structural Engineers Association of Illinois - WISE