Sheet Metal & Air Conditioning Contractors’ National Association


SMACNA Celebrates Women in Construction

Mar 06, 2019


WIC_ApprenticesCollage 600x295This week is Women in Construction week, a campaign by the National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC) to highlight women as a visible component of the construction industry.

SMACNA is celebrating by focusing on women and their contributions to the sheet metal and HVAC industry. Chapters and members across the country are using this week to raise awareness of the opportunities available to women and to emphasize the growing role of women in construction.

Chapters Focus Efforts on Women in Construction Week

Angie-Hardhats Breakfast 2 600x748

SMACNA Western-Washington kicked off its first ever WIC Week initiative, sponsoring events throughout the week.

A “Women in Hardhats” breakfast hosted by PSF Mechanical featured Angela Simon, president of Western Allied Mechanical Inc. and SMACNA president-elect. More than 200 women attended the event.

In her inspiring keynote speech, Angela spoke on the theme that women can do anything. She highlighted the history of women in construction as well as her experience as a young project manager in the late 1980s and 90s. She noted that, “one of the biggest issues in the construction industry is the lack of other successful female role models. It is really important to have someone to look up to and say “if they can do it so can I.” 

The chapter also partnered with the Local 66 Women’s Committee to fill “Rosie’s Closet” and assist women who are new to the trade with donated tools, gear, and workwear. The two organizations coordinated a visit to the ANEW training Center, one of the oldest pre-apprenticeship programs for women.

The week will culminate with an event hosted by the Women of Hermanson to celebrate International Women’s Day and a social media photo contest using the #SMACNAWIC2019.

MadisonArea 600x322The Madison Area Mechanical and Sheet Metal Contractors Association (MSC) and Madison Association of Plumbing Contractors (MAPC) featured stories of women from member companies, including 1901, Inc., All Comfort Services, General Heating and Air Conditioning, Hooper Corporation, H.J. Pertzborn Plumbing and Fire Protection, J.F. Ahern Co., and Monona Plumbing and Fire Protection.  

On being a woman in this industry, Caryn Rader, a design engineer with General Heating and Air Conditioning, said, “It is both challenging and rewarding…we need intelligent, dedicated women in this industry!”

Read all the stories at

Members Recognize Contributions of Female Employees

MWIC_ApprenticesCollage 600x338cKinstry celebrated by highlighting “women building innovation.” The company featured female employees on their blog all week, including an interview with five female apprentices. On how to encourage more women to work in the trades, Ashley Fortune said, “Working in the trades gives you a sense of independence, strength, and confidence. When you choose to be a part of something bigger, you can set yourself and your family up for success.”  Read the full interview here.

Once again MacDonald-Miller interviewed women from all areas of their company. Lana Gochenaur, VDC solutions manager with MacDonald-Miller’s engineering team, spoke on her new position and gave advice to newcomers. “Learn as much as you can about every aspect of the process.” Read more here.

Skanska published an infographic following the career paths of two of their employees: project manager Jessica Miller and vice president Katie Coulson.

icon Mechanical featured many of their female employees on their Facebook page. Limbach also highlighted many of their female employees on their social media outlets, asking “What do you envision for women in the construction industry?”

Many other SMACNA members, including Southland Industries, Egan Company, MMC Contractors, Hermanson Company, and associate member PlanGrid, posted in support of women in construction highlighting women as a visible component of the industry.