Women may constitute more than half of the U.S. workforce, but they represent only 9% of labor in the construction industry
. Although growth in this area has been slow, there are some encouraging numbers. According to a recent American Express report
, the growth rate for women-owned businesses in construction increased 94% between 2007 and 2018. So it’s no surprise the NAHB Professional Women in Building (PWB) Council is growing, too.
At its annual board of trustees meeting at the International Builders’ Show
, PWB will charter six new councils, whose leadership is eager to support their local communities, network with other female professionals, and encourage more women to pursue careers in the building industry.
Lee County (Alabama) Home Builders Association
"I’m most excited to charter PWB Lee County, Ala., which will be a vehicle to bring exposure of and education about the construction industry to women and girls. We want them to know the opportunities within this industry, but furthermore, we want them to know they are welcome
within this industry."
– Lisa Campfield, chair
[caption id="attachment_14358" align="alignright" width="300"] Members of HBA of Western Colorado's PWB Council gather at their first meeting.[/caption]
Home Builders Association of Western Colorado (Grand Junction)
"PWB of Western Colorado formed a council to build a stronger industry, together. We will bring the passion and drive of women to empower one another. We will bring together all like-minded organizations and individuals who are pursuing similar causes. We will brainstorm, network and build strategies, connect with the community, have fun and become friends. We will be the voice of the western portion of Colorado in our industry, together."
– Deb Hogstad, president
Greater Baton Rouge Home Builders Association
"We certainly feel this new PWB Council will benefit our entire local HBA council — especially promoting women in the workforce. Contractors, superintendents, architects, Realtors, interior designers, kitchen and bath designers, plumbers, electricians, carpenters, painters, etc. We want to entice local women to pursue careers in the home-building industry. We need this workforce, and they will do a great job. We are excited to widen this doorway for women!"
– Kathy C. Simoneaux, CAPS, chair
Home Builders Association of Greater Grand Rapids (Michigan)
"We are excited, and our PWB members are excited that we have a community where we can network with other women within the building community. We have already made some wonderful connections amongst the group, and we look forward to what awaits as our group grows."
– Maria Szotko and Dani Harris, co-chairs
Southwest Montana Building Industry Association
"We are thrilled by the rate at which the Professional Women in Building Chapter has taken off in Southwest Montana. For us, the PWB chapter is a way to connect women in many different aspects of the industry, as well as work together to help solve some of the problems and growing pains our town of Bozeman is experiencing. We have been blown away by the amount of enthusiasm generated by the PWB chapter, and are looking forward to the exciting programming and events of 2019."
– Holly O'Malley, chair, and Hannah Van Wetter, vice chair
Salt Lake City Home Builders Association
"I'm excited about our PWB charter in Salt Lake City because it allows me to interact with so many amazing women in the building industry and to spread the word to other women who may not realize the opportunities available to them. The incredible thing about PWB is that it creates a platform for us to show other women and girls what they can do, and the possibilities are limitless.
"The women I've met at the local and national level of PWB inspire and uplift me. I feel truly connected to them as we work together to strengthen and improve this great home-building industry."
– Kristi Allen, vice chair
PWB membership has grown 20% over the previous year. With the addition of these charters, the PWB is nearly 2,000 members strong.
To learn more about the benefits of PWB membership, visit the Professional Women in Building Council webpage