Register Today for the 3rd Annual Constructing Your Future Women’s Forum!
Join us for the 3rd annual Constructing Your Future Women’s Forum, a full day of professional development and networking specifically for women in the A/E/C industries.
Kick off the morning with “Nutritional Networking” a fun and informative way to learn about health and wellness while connecting with other fantastic women in the construction industry. The Forum continues with the keynote presentation, “The Multigenerational Construction Workforce” and luncheon speaker, SBA Small Business Person of the Year and President of Landmark Pest Management, Rebecca Fyffe are sure to engage. Workshop options include (choose one):
“Creating a Professional Blueprint” – According to Catalyst, “Not all leadership opportunities are created equally, and not all jobs provide the same degree of career advancement. Today, women still get offered fewer of the high visibility, mission-critical roles, and experiences (what we call “hot jobs”) that are important to reaching the highest levels of leadership.” What is the “hot job” in your organization? Do you know how to go after it? Have you identified your next step?
“Start with Trust” – Trust is foundational to building workplace relationships. Research has found that professionals who are able to build trusted relationships, not transactional ones, are four times more likely to be successful. Women are historically better at relationship building, yet aren’t comfortable leveraging relationships in the workplace to the same extent men are, why? We will discuss how to mitigate the barriers to trust and explore how to build a trust-based culture that can improve project outcomes, foster greater collaboration, increase productivity, and further your career.
Join the discussion with our panel of accomplished women in construction to wrap up the day.
There will be plenty of time for networking, so bring plenty of business cards.
- 7:45 am - 8:15 amCheck-in, Breakfast, & Welcome
- 8:15 am - 9:00 amGeneral Session "Nutritional Networking"
- 9:00 am - 10:30 amGeneral Session "The Multigenerational Workforce"
- 10:30 am - 10:45 amBreak
- 10:45 am - 12:00 pmWorkshops (choose one) "Creating Your Career Blueprint" or "Start With Trust"
- 12:00 pm - 1:30 pmLunch - Keynote Speaker Rebecca Fyffe
- 1:30 pm - 2:45 pmWomen in Construction Panel Discussion
- 2:45 pm - 3:00 pmWrap-up
NIU Naperville Conference Center
Unbeknownst to her, Rowena Dziubla or Ro as known by all - both in the industry and out, started her career in construction when she was just 17. "My friend called me to see if I wanted to be a secretary for some home remodeling company in Park Ridge...it paid cash; I was sold". From there, Ro continued to pursue new endeavors working in the construction industry. She worked for architects, developers, GC's, subcontractors. She worked the long crazy hours like any of us do when we try to make a name/ reputation for ourselves and get ahead. It wasn't until some routine bloodwork turned up abnormal, did she realize, this whole health thing was important.
See 10 years or so prior to that check-up, Ro was diagnosed with Fibrosarcoma her junior year of high school which required the removal of her left kidney, spleen, part of her colon and part of her pancreas. Fortunately, Ro's oncologist from the original surgery was still practicing. He confirmed that abnormal was actually normal for Ro but before doing that and after greeting her with "Holy smokes you could lose 20lbs" he assured her that she was on the wrong path in life with her poor health and that if she kept going that way, things did not look good in the short term.
That's when Ro decided to find out what all this "fitness" stuff was about. It didn't happen overnight - in fact it took over a decade to get it right, to where she is today but it finally happened and that's when she's decided to share all that trial and error with others by creating WODeration. "I don't want others to make the same mistakes I did when losing weight and developing a healthier body composition - when learning how to manage stress without my health taking the hit for it or obsessing and guilting over a meal or snack I shouldn't have had", Ro says. She continues with, "If I feel like this, other women feel like this - the emotional strain."
Fortunately for Ro, after attending her first NAWIC member meeting, it all came together. Why not give back to the construction industry by empowering women with the tools they need to make their health a priority all while continuing their mission to equalize the numbers of women verses men in construction. "Health equals success.", Ro wraps up with. "Maintaining good health all while conquering the new challenges our jobs bring day in and day out (Ro still works in the industry), proves more than we know and if I can help by sharing my story, my means and methods, then perhaps the candle will continue to burn bright instead of burn out."
"The Multigenerational Workforce"
Maureen Keane is a Professor, Parent and Professional People-Promoter. As an Executive Coach, College Professor, and Entrepreneur, she has one foot in academia and one in the “real world”. Maureen influences future leaders at Lewis University and Loyola University, designing and delivering undergraduate and graduate courses.
Maureen partners with leading-edge companies, including McDonalds, ATI, Martin-Brower, and Reyes, coaching and facilitating trainings in the U.S., and abroad – focusing on Leadership, Communication, Emotional Intelligence and other important life/workplace skills.
Maureen spent 16 + years with IBM – thinking, learning, managing and marketing. She earned a Master of Science in Managerial Communication from Northwestern University and is a credentialed MBTI practitioner, and ICF (ACC) Coach.
Landmark Pest Management
Rebecca Fyffe is the CEO and Director of Research of Landmark Pest Management.
Landmark Pest Management is a woman-owned firm that is certified as a WBE by the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC). The firm is also certified as a DBE through the Unified Certification Program (UCP), holds WBE Certification through the City of Chicago, and BEP Certification through the State of Illinois.
Landmark Pest Management conducts itself with the knowledge that each of us has an obligation to the planet, to our communities, and to each other. The firm’s approach to pest control is science-based, enabling its clients to live and work in greener, safer buildings.
Rebecca is a subject matter expert on policies and programs designed to enable women and minorities to capture a representative share of economic opportunities in corporate and government procurement and contracting. She served as chair of the Chicago Transit Authority’s DBE Advisory Committee and has testified in numerous disparity studies.
Fyffe is a socially conscious entrepreneur whose background in government and advocacy form the basis of her civic engagement. Before becoming an entrepreneur, Rebecca served as a full-time staff member of the Governor’s Commission on the Status of Women in Illinois where she worked in support of placing a moratorium on the death penalty in Illinois, authored Illinois’ portion of the federal reauthorization of the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Act, hosted legislative roundtables to garner downstate support for the passage of the Illinois Gender Violence Act, and served as liaison between the Governor’s Commission on the Status of Women in Illinois and COWL; the Conference of Women Legislators.
In addition to being named 2018 Illinois Small Business Person of the Year, SBA Administrator Linda McMahon crowned Rebecca Fyffe as the National Small Business Person of the Year, America’s highest honor for a small business owner.
Constructing Opportunity, LLC
"Creating Your Professional Blueprint"
Peggy Newquist is currently a principal/owner of Constructing Opportunity, LLC a consulting firm focused on talent development and leadership coaching within the A/E/C industries. She is also an adjunct faculty member of the Corporate, Community and Continuing Education department of Moraine Valley Community College. Prior to founding her company, Peggy held the position of Construction Planning Lead for The Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago. She has the distinction of being the first woman engineer hired by Walsh Construction Company and the first woman project manager to be hired by Matocha Associates.
Before joining the Federal Reserve Bank in September 2014 Peggy had a 20+ year career with McDonald’s Corporation. She began in 1992 as a Construction Project Manager and was promoted over the years eventually becoming the Sr. Director, Worldwide Training, Construction and Strategic Sourcing. While at McDonald’s Peggy is most proud of creating the Development Leadership Program, which was designed to accelerate the careers of high potential development staff through a year long program of workshops and business case assignments. She is a 2011 graduate of the prestigious LAMP (Leadership at McDonald’s Program) program. Peggy is the recipient of the McDonald’s Women’s Leadership Award and the Directors Award of Excellence.
Peggy is a graduate of Purdue University with a degree in Construction Engineering and Management. She also holds a master’s degree in Construction Engineering from the Illinois Institute of Technology.
Peggy has been a member of NAWIC (National Association of Women in Construction) for more than 25 years and was awarded their Woman of the Year award in 1998. She is the current NAWIC national Professional Education and Development Chair and serves as a Secretary for the NAWIC Education Foundation. She sits on the Purdue University Construction Engineering School Industry Advisory Board and leads a mentoring program for women students in the PU construction engineering program.
Peggy’s speaking engagements on Gender Diversity, Negotiation and Building Professional Alliances have included: Purdue University Construction Council, CFMA Annual Convention, NAWIC Midwest Regional Forum and NAWIC Annual Conference. She has also been published in Commercial Construction and Renovation magazine, Chicagoland AGC Blueprint and the NAWIC Image.
Constructing Opportunity, LLC
"Start With Trust"
Michaelann Agoranos is a Principal and Co-founder at Constructing Opportunity, LLC. She has 25 years of experience in the A/E/C industry. She is passionate about growing and developing others, especially other women in the A/E/C industries. This passion led to the co-founding of Constructing Opportunity in 2016.
She has held various positions in design and construction, including project manager, regional construction manager, studio lead for teams of architects and engineers, and global construction support for the McDonald’s Corporation in the Restaurant Development Department. During her time with the McDonald’s Corporation she led leadership development and skill-based training for the Restaurant Development Department. Her background in architecture, construction, and training provides a unique perspective, keen awareness, and understanding of the challenges faced developing talent in these fields.
Agoranos holds a BA in Architectural Studies from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and an MBA in Global Management from the University of Phoenix. She is a member of the Federation of Women Contractors;
actively involved in the Chicago Metro (#325) Chapter of the National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC), currently serving on the chapter Board of Directors as secretary; Chairperson for the Midwest Regional Professional Development & Education; and was Block Kids Chairperson 2016 – 2018 and regional Block Kids Chair in 2018 and is currently a member of the mentoring committee. She has also served as a mentor for the LEAD Program of Women Unlimited, Inc. and is on the membership committee for ABC Illinois.
Agoranos has spoken on topics such as company culture, negotiating, gender diversity, for various professional organizations including: Chicagoland Associated General Contractors (AGC), NAWIC Midwest Regional Forum, and the SBA in Chicago. She participated on an Architecture, Engineering & Construction Panel at the Society for Marketing Professional Services’ (SMPS) annual conference. She has been published in Commercial Construction and Renovation Magazine, and the Chicagoland AGC Blog.
Roshelle Dama is a manager at Marcum LLP and member of the Firm’s Accounting Services Division and Construction Industry Practice Group. Roshelle has over 20 years of accounting experience specializing in small to mid-size clients in a variety of industries including manufacturing and construction, professional organizations, and healthcare. Roshelle assists clients with financial statements and provides tax and consulting services to help them navigate through their everyday accounting needs. She is a member of Illinois CPA society and AICPA.
Deanna is a Purdue Construction Engineering Management graduate who spent her 3 internships working for The Walsh Group. Upon graduation she continued her career with The Walsh Group and is now a 20year tenured employee. Her early construction experience was in the high-rise residential market and upon the Chicago Market decline in 2010 she transitioned into the Healthcare realm. She is currently a Senior Project Manager with The Walsh Group in Healthcare and helps lead the Diversity and Inclusion Committee at Walsh.
Erin Hatcher is Vice President of Sustainability at AMLI Residential. Erin oversees the sustainability initiatives at AMLI with a focus on building certifications and investor reporting. In supporting companywide sustainability initiatives, her role is highly collaborative and works with internal development, construction and operation teams across their active markets. She joined AMLI in 2012 in Atlanta and moved back to the Chicago headquarters in 2017. Prior to joining AMLI, Erin worked as a Sustainability Consultant in focused in new construction. She received her BFA in Interior Design from the Illinois Institute of Art – Chicago. Erin is a LEED BD+C Accredited Professional and a certified Construction Documents Technologist.
Sarah Nelson earned her Bachelor of Architecture, Masters of Architecture, and Masters of Civil Engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana - Champaign. In 2016, she kicked-off her career with Power Construction, working as a member of their estimating department. With a desire to work in the field, Sarah took her estimator skillset and brought it into her first project at the University of Loyola Chicago. Working as a Project Engineer on Loyola's Campus, Sarah helped coordinate the construction of the new Alfie Norville Practice Facility. When the project completed in July 2019, Sarah had gained experience with ground-up construction, and realized that her passion for building was closer aligned with the corporate interior market. Joining Power Construction's Workplace Group, Sarah is currently working as a Project Engineer for the relocation and renovation of SOM's Corporate Office. Her background in both the design and construction aspects of a project have provided her with a keen understanding of design documents and the ability to fill in scope gaps to accurately budget and ensure constructability of each project.
Corie joined ARCO/Murray, a design/build contractor, after graduating from the University of Wisconsin with a degree in Civil Engineering. She has completed over twenty local and national commercial renovations ranging from office tenant improvements to adaptive re-use projects. Corie now serves as the Director of Operations of the Tenant Solutions division. She created and oversees the on-boarding process for all project managers during their first year. Her main focuses involve the growth of associates through execution and efficiency, as well as the development of operational procedures and systems.
As a Construction Project Manager at Related Midwest, Liliana Gonzalez oversees different phases of construction on ground-up high-rise residential projects. Since 2016, Liliana has worked on notable residential towers that have contributed to Chicago’s growing skyline. This includes the newly completed 70-story One Bennett Park, a luxury residential tower, which is the tallest all-residential building in Chicago, and Landmark West Loop, a 300-unit luxury rental high-rise.
Liliana has 12 years of architectural and real estate experience with expertise in construction, design and project management. Prior to joining Related Midwest, she served as the Architecture Design Lead and Project Manager for Mission Critical Facilities on ESD’s Real Estate Development Consulting Team. She served in an integral role for Newmark Grubb Knight Frank’s Workplace Solutions Team on the Capital One account and was a project designer and marketing manager for architecture firm JGMA.
Liliana holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Architecture from the University of Illinois at Chicago and a Master’s Degree in Real Estate from Roosevelt University. She was a member the Roosevelt University Real Estate Team that won the Harold Eisenburg Midwest Real Estate Challenge in 2014. Liliana is a Chicago native and is passionate about housing, civil rights issues and improving her community through real estate.