18-19 September 2019, Hyatt Regency, San Francisco
Vice President - Account Manager @ Skanska
Jit Kee Chin
Chief Data Officer & Executive Vice President @ Suffolk Construction
Barbara Bouza, FAIA
Managing Director, Principal @ Gensler
Director of Centralized Engineering @ Turner Construction Company
Zena Howard, FAIA
Managing Director & Principal @ Perkins+Will
Project Executive @ Gilbane
Construction Project Executive @ The Cordish Companies
Regional Delivery Manager @ California High-Speed Rail Authority
Technical Marketing Engineer @ Nucor Steel Yamato
President @ Cavalli Solutions and Intuitive Mind Strategies
Project Manager @ Turner Construction
Senior Project Manager @ Newmark Knight Frank
General Organizer @ Ironworkers International
San Diego Regional Executive @ Kitchell
Vice President of Architecture & Design @ Public Storage
Workface Planner @ Bechtel
Senior Manager Industry Advancement @ Procore
Deputy Regional Director, North America @ C40 Cities
SVP of Construction @ Compass Datacenters
Partner @ McKinsey & Co.
Senior Director of IT @ JGC America
Environmental Health & Safety Manager @ Lendlease
Senior Preconstruction Manager @ Morley Builders
Katie is a Vice President – Account Manager with Skanska in Portland, Oregon. She is the founding chair of the Skanska Woman’s Network (SWN) in Portland and is currently serving on the SWN National Board.
Katie holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Wisconsin – Madison and is on the Industry Board for Civil & Environmental Engineering there. She has served on numerous boards including Secretary of Oregon Tradeswomen and the American Heart Association focusing on healthy construction workplace.
Outside of work, Katie enjoys reading, hiking, paddle boarding, traveling, and spending time with her husband Bob and daughter Taryn.
Jit Kee Chin is the Chief Data Officer and Executive Vice President at Suffolk and is responsible for leveraging big data and advanced analytics to improve the organization’s core business. Ms. Chin is also responsible for helping to position Suffolk to achieve its vision of transforming the construction experience while working closely with the company’s Innovation and Strategy teams to fundamentally reinvent the future of construction in the digital age. Prior to her role at Suffolk, Ms. Chin spent 10 years with management consulting firm McKinsey and Company where she counseled senior executives on strategic, commercial and advanced analytics topics. Most recently, she was a Senior Expert in Analytics in McKinsey’s Boston office where she specialized in the design and implementation of end-to-end analytics transformations. Prior to that role, Ms. Chin was an Associate Principal in McKinsey’s London office where she helped organizations drive multi-year business transformations and change programs and developing strategies for profitable growth. Ms. Chin holds a PhD in Physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a BS from the California Institute of Technology.
Barbara is Co-Managing Director, Principal of Gensler Los Angeles and is a global influencer for wellbeing through design excellence. Through her collaborative leadership style, she brings strategic design management to highly innovative clients such as Netflix, JPL/NASA, Amgen and the City of Hope.
A Fellow of the American Institute of Architects and member of the AIA California Council Board of Directors, Barbara will be 2019’s AIA Los Angeles Chapter President. She was recognized by the Los Angeles Business Journal as Executive of the Year: Women Making a Difference, Woman of Influence: California by Real Estate Forum magazine, honored by Girls Inc., and featured on National Geographic’s documentary, “Origins: The Journey of Humankind – Building the Future.” Barbara is on the Board of Directors of Imagine LA, a leading not-for-profit dedicated to mobilizing the community to end the cycle of homelessness. She is active with Dress for Success, The National Organization of Minority Architects and Women Presidents’ Organization.
She holds a Bachelor of Architecture degree from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona and studied in the Graduate Diploma Program at the Architectural Association in London. Her work has been published internationally.
si-Kilanga Bowser is the Director of Centralized Engineering at Turner Construction Company. She has been with Turner for 13 years and has been in the design and construction industry since 2001. She received her Bachelors of Architecture from the University of Miami and her Masters of Architecture and Urban Design from Columbia University.
She currently holds several professional industry accreditations such as DBIA, LEED AP BD+C and, NCARB, and is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., and National Organization of Minority Architects.
With Turner, Esi is honored to have worked on several notable projects around New York City such as Manhattan Cruise Terminal, NYU Energy Building, Brookfield Place’s Courtyard Renovation, Mt.Sinai Hospital KCC, One Court Square and Cadillac House just to name a few. She is currently working on projects at 375 Pearl St, Brooklyn Navy Yard, 230 Park Ave, Mt. Sinai Hudson Yards, and various other commercial and institutional fit-outs throughout New York City, as well as the lead for training and standardization for the engineering operations department within Turner’s New York City Office.
Esi is proud to exemplify Turner’s core values of Teamwork, Integrity, and Commitment and is excited to be here to help cultivate and inspire the panel discussion attendees. Esi lives in Brooklyn, NY with her husband of 12 years and three children.
Zena Howard is a Principal and Managing Director of the North Carolina practice of global architecture and design firm Perkins+Will. Zena is known for her success leading visionary, complex, and culturally-significant projects including the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, DC and the Motown Museum Expansion in Detroit, MI. Her current projects include LA’s Destination Crenshaw, the City of Vancouver Hogan’s Alley initiative, and the City of Greenville Town Common Sycamore Hill Gateway project. Zena is helping these and other clients envision and create cultural destinations that will celebrate the history and context of displaced, forgotten communities.
A Project Executive for Gilbane, Angela has been involved with many high-profile projects during her 22 years that have received multiple local, national and international awards.
A Penn State graduate, Angela was an ENR Texas/Louisiana Top 20 under 40 in 2015 and a 2018 STEAM Role Model for Houston Women’s Chamber. She is working with the AGC starting a local Women in Construction initiative
Mrs. Cotie is ACE Mentor Houston’s Chairman of the Board, a board member for PSU’s Architectural Engineering Program, a Galveston Career Connect leader, HISD chamber member, and active with her children’s school, FFA and activities.
Barb Allen has been in the construction industry for 25+ years. Barb began climbing the field ladder for a General Contractor directly after receiving her Bachelors in Construction Management from the University of Central Missouri. She began as a Union Carpenter Apprentice and was progressively promoted to Carpenter Foreman, Assistant Superintendent, and Superintendent. After 20 years on the General Contractor side, Barb moved to the Developer side of the industry when she accepted a position as Construction Project Executive with The Cordish Company where she manages all aspects of construction for their Luxury Apartment Towers across the nation.
Serving the Transportation industry for over 20 years, Noopur Jain is the Regional Delivery Manager (RDM) for the California High-Speed Rail Authority. She brings leadership, management, and technical expertise from both public and private sectors as RDM, and previously as an engineer on the California High-Speed Rail program since 2015.Noopur is a registered professional and structural engineer in multiple States including California, Washington, Utah, Illinois, Texas and Ohio. She is an active member of several professional organizations including the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), Design-Build Institute of America (DBIA), American Segmental Bridge Institute (ASBI), and the Transportation Research Board (TRB). Noopur currently serves as the Pacific West Region Council Chair for Women’s Transportation Seminar (WTS), an organization dedicated to advancing women in the transportation industry.
Jain received a B.S. in Civil Engineering, and an M.S. in Structural Engineering, both with honors, from Universities in India.
Rebekah Morlock is the Technical Marketing Engineer for Nucor. She earned her Bachelor of Science Degree in Civil Engineering from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte in 2006. She has over twelve years experience working in all facets of the structural engineering industry, including residential, commercial, industrial, and even software sales and development. She has sat at the design desk as well as worn the hardhat onsite. She has a true passion for building and pushing the envelope in terms of design and structure.
Sophia Cavalli’s continually expanding expertise comes as a result of more than 20 years of experience in the field of inclusion and diversity and unconscious bias. She has established herself as a sought-after speaker at US and European engagements in the construction industry and has lead inclusion and diversity programs for multibillion-dollar construction companies and nationally recognized programs for large public agencies in the US.
Sophia continues to further her mission by helping companies and organizations become more inclusive and move beyond existing biased perspectives and practices. She works with clients in the US and Europe at all stages of their inclusion and diversity journeys to help them achieve their business and operational goals. Sophia conducts insightful presentations and workshops and connects clients to tailored solutions that drive results. No matter where an organization is on its path, she can help enhance the values of inclusion and diversity by enlightening perspectives.
With over 10 years in the Construction Industry, Allison is a graduate of Civil Engineering from Clemson University and a Project Manager with Turner Construction. She began her career at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center, and later followed with various assignment rotations at Turner Construction. Her portfolio includes a variety of project types, including hospitals and medical office buildings, a higher education innovation center, and mission critical data center projects. Allison is involved in a number of industry organizations, and is the Board Chair of the Greenville ACE Mentor Program. Through her continued career growth and experiences, Allison has found her purpose and passion within the construction industry.
Ellen Haiying Yang is a senior project manager from global real estate services consultant Newmark Knight Frank / The CRE group now on assignment to a confidential fortune 50 technology client. She is managing several tenant improvement and office build-out projects as owner representative where her work ranges from project planning and permitting to design, construction and close out. Over her 11 years in project and program management, she also has worked on tenant improvement projects for other tech-sector clients like Google. Earlier, she worked on pharmaceutical, infrastructure, oil and gas, mining, and power construction projects for Cumming, Atkins and WorleyParsons in the US, Canada and Australia.
Vicki O’Leary joined the Ironworkers International in January 2016. Since that time she became Chair of the North American Building Trades Union (NABTU) Tradeswomen's Committee. She is a 34-year member out of Local #1 in Chicago. She completed her triple major Bachelor of Arts degree in Union Leadership & Administration, Labor Education & Labor Studies from the National Labor College in 2008 and her Master of Arts Degree at Gonzaga University in Organizational Leadership in 2012. In 2018 she graduated from the Harvard Trade Union Program and completed the Cornell National Labor Leadership Initiative (NLLI). As a General Organizer for Safety/Diversity she passionately strives for equal opportunity for all minorities and women within the building trades as well as the safety and health for all ironworkers.
Cecilia Kucharski offers more than two decades of construction industry experience in a leadership role at Kitchell, where she serves as Regional Executive of the company’s San Diego contracting division.
Over the course of her career, Cecilia has held various positions including construction operations, estimating, preconstruction and business development, resulting in the successful award and delivery of signature projects throughout California.
Cecilia holds a Bachelor of Science in Construction Engineering and Management (CEM) from Purdue University and continues to contribute to the engineering program as a mentor with the Purdue Women in Construction Mentoring Program. She is a certified LEED® AP and DBIA Professional and serves on numerous boards including ACE Mentor San Diego and Urban Land Institute San Diego/Tijuana. She has been named one of San Diego’s Business Women of the Year by the San Diego Business Journal, and was honored by the YWCA “In the Company of Women” tribute with a Mentor Award.
Outside of work, Cecilia enjoys swimming, cooking, Girl Scout leadership and spending time with her husband Tom and three daughters Maya, Laura and Alina.
Bernadette Reyes is Vice President of Architecture and Design at Public Storage. Ms. Reyes brings more than 18 years of experience in the design and construction industry.
Ms. Reyes and her team lead the Company’s architecture, site planning, building system and interior design efforts. She ensures Public Storage standards are consistently applied to ground up and existing properties across the portfolio.
Since joining in May 2017 Ms. Reyes has led the design strategy for our portfolio providing support of architectural design, site planning, procurement, design specifications, branding and material selection. Ms. Reyes has also led the development of the reinvestment design and rebranding strategies for our capital reinvestment efforts.
Prior to joining Public Storage, Ms. Reyes worked at Austin Commercial as the Western Region Director of Preconstruction, establishing Austin’s expansion office in California. Prior to joining Austin Commercial, Ms. Reyes was a Senior Design Manager for Clark Construction, one of the largest general contractors in the United States and led over $3 billion of Design/Build and LEED projects.
Ms. Reyes holds an MBA from the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan, B.Arch. in Architecture and a B.A. in Political Science from the University of Southern California.
Laura is an engineer, yoga teacher, speaker and workplace diversity and inclusion champion. Her mission is to empower women to thrive in work and in life.
As Workface Planning Manager, Laura leads a team responsible for constraints management and sequencing of construction execution for Shell’s world-scale multi-billion dollar Pennsylvania Chemicals project. Laura joined Bechtel in 2011, and has worked across design engineering, construction, commissioning and start up, in the UK, USA and Australia.
Alongside her work for Bectel, Laura is the Global Chair of Women@Bechtel, Bechtel’s Business Resource Group for Women, and is passionate about inspiring the next generation of engineers, encouraging more women to stay and thrive in STEM, and exposing the inherent biases facing women in male-dominated industries.
Danielle is a multi-functional leader with 10+ years of experience developing strategic cross-channel programs focused on industry development, marketing, and technology. With a history of proven success in business development, intrapreneurship, product marketing, content, and digital, Danielle specializes in small to mid-growth companies.
In her current role, Danielle is responsible for developing and evangelizing a new benchmark for a modern construction industry. She runs Procore’s Women in Construction initiative, and oversees the tracks and session planning for Groundbreak, Procore’s annual industry conference. Danielle is also an officer and founding member in Procore’s Lean In ERG (Employee Resource Group) and the Procore Council for Diversity & Inclusion.
Laura Jay serves as a Deputy Regional Director for North America & Head of the New York Office at C40 Cities where she works with C40’s 15 cities in the US and Canada to help advance climate actions, from policies to mitigate emissions to strategies for adapting to climate impacts. Previously, Laura managed the Land Use Planning Network at C40, working with urban planners in C40 cities globally to support the development of land use policies to address the creation of more compact, connected and resilient cities. Laura holds a Master's degree in Urban Planning from Columbia University.
Nancy Novak, Compass Datacenters’ SVP of Construction, has over 25 years of construction experience and has overseen the delivery of over $3.5 billion in projects during that time. Prior to joining Compass, Nancy was the National Vice President of Operations for Balfour Beatty Construction which she joined after serving in a variety of executive positions for Hensel Phelps Construction Company. Ms. Novak is actively involved in a number of organizations dedicated to the advancement of woman in business including Above the Glass Ceiling (AGC) who are working with Fortune 500 companies to aid in the advancement of women in STEM, Women in Government Relations (WGE), Women Construction Owners and Executives (WCOE), The World Trade Center Initiative, Fortune Media’s Most Powerful Women and the National Women’s Party. Nancy is a frequent speaker on the topic and has participated in the White House Womens and Diversity in STEM forums. Nancy holds a degree in Construction Engineering and Management from San Diego State University.
Shannon is a leader in McKinsey’s Capital Projects & Infrastructure, Electric Power & Natural Gas, and Sustainability Practices. She brings extensive experience serving both public- and private-sector clients in infrastructure, transportation, and utilities. Prior to rejoining McKinsey, Shannon worked in the Office of the Chairman of the New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority. Outside of McKinsey, Shannon serves on the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management Undergraduate advisory board as well as the San Francisco Center for Economic Development.
Overseeing Environmental Health and Safety operations for Lendlease in San Francisco is 10 year industry veteran Ashlynn Dolcini. Ashlynn began her career in construction as a jobsite administrator for Cahill Contractors where she supported both field and safety teams onsite. Upon joining Southland Industries’ Safety team in 2013, Ashlynn found that her passion for people, health, wellness and safety would serve as the ultimate synergy in her career path and also bring a different level of value to the teams she worked with.
Ashlynn leverages a very diverse portfolio of project experience which include healthcare, life science, high-rise residential, and higher education. She is fully versed in local, statewide and federal health and safety regulations and is a certified Construction Health and Safety Technician. She holds a Bachelors in Business Administration and will be receiving her Masters in Occupational Health and Safety at the end of this year.
A nineteen-year veteran of the architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) industry, Anna Jacobson has collaborated on some of the most complex and culturally significant new projects in Southern California at Morley Builders, an ENR Top 400 general contractor based in Santa Monica. She currently provides leadership and direction in all phases of preconstruction, engaging with new and existing clients to secure opportunities, providing technical expertise and oversight in cost estimating, and managing a diverse portfolio of other preconstruction functions including proposal and interview preparation, construction scheduling, BIM coordination, and design and constructability reviews. She also founded and leads Morley’s peer mentoring group for women in construction operations. Ms. Jacobson holds a BS from USC in Structural Engineering and is currently pursuing a Masters of Information and Data Science at UC Berkeley.
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