Today as we celebrate the 48th year of National Women’s Equality Day, EDA Contractors is proud to honor the achievements and contributions of women breaking gender stereotypes. Dedicated to commemorating the passage of the 19th Amendment, Women’s Equality Day is an important reminder that there is still progress to be made in bridging the gender gap. We are committed to equal opportunities that allow women to enter nontraditional roles in the construction industry, and beyond.
As industries continue to grow and adapt to changes and the demand for work, the need for diversity grows even stronger. This rings especially true for construction, which is expected to see an increase in demand of workers. According to BigRentz, companies are “looking to recruit more women now than ever before to bring their skill sets into the field.” When told that more companies are looking to hire tradeswomen to join their projects, Reboot Construction Apprentice Keiona Jones-Jackson said “I feel like I entered at just the right time.”
Historically a male-dominated field, the construction industry is slowly embracing more women.
Carpenter Apprentice Doris Blount recounts how she was accepted in the field through the Reboot program: “[Kodi Nixon] said, ‘You should come work with us, if you really wanna do stuff like this.’ I was always interested, Reboot opened that door for me.”
While women make up about 10 percent of the construction industry in the United States, they hold a substantial portion of professional and management positions, according to the National Association of Women in Construction.
We have several women serving in leadership roles at EDA, including Directors Lisa Dunwoody (Process Redesign) and Jacklyn Isasi (Communications, Marketing, & Reputation Management) and Managers Erica Czerniak (Accounting) and Kelli Kotzen (Human Resources). We also have an all-female IT Department – a rarity for the IT field in any industry, much less a male-dominated construction industry.
CEO Edward DeAngelis, is an outspoken advocate for the advancement of women in the construction industry and gives his outlook on expanding gender diversity in the field:
“In our little slice of the world, women have not been given the opportunity to excel in this $1.3 trillion industry in the United States. Here at EDA, we have women that break down the typical stereotypes.”
While we remain proud of the contributions from our female leaders, we recognize that there is more to be done to ensure women have equal opportunities, in the office and in the field. That’s why we’ve recently launched an EDA Women in Construction group to establish strong relationships among the women on the field and in the office. This group aims to empower the women of EDA, providing a platform to speak, feel valued and heard, and establish connections with their peers.