Welcome to our annual Women in Tile issue.
In this issue we celebrate the amazing impact women in our industry are making – in the boardroom, in technical roles, in product design and marketing, in building a company, or on the jobsite.
Why is this important? Well a recent post on the Tile Chix Facebook page by Dawn Marie Suiter, Owner of Strong Work Renovations LLC, illustrates the significance.
She wrote, “Let us never forget who is watching and learning from us. Emma is the granddaughter of the homeowner I just completed the bath for and her new favorite thing is picnicking in the new shower. I went today to pick up the final payment and stayed for tea and received this later in an email:
“‘Glad you’re able to enjoy this breather between projects. Emma and I were delighted you had a little time to visit. After you left, she ‘read’ me all the notes she had written. They were proposals for home improvement projects her company could do for me. Little eyes and ears miss nothing. You served as a valuable role model.’”
This six-year-old girl was inspired from simply watching Suiter do her job, and it may have set her on a life path. It certainly opened up her eyes to what might be possible for a girl to do when she grows up.
It’s no secret that people are inspired and encouraged by seeing other people who look like them do things they aspire to, whether it’s in music, entertainment, politics, sports, or business. That goes for gender, race, age, and differently-abled people. Years ago women didn’t have as many people who “looked like them” doing the work in construction industries.
But that has changed a bit over time, and some of the strongest champions of women have been men. Other supporters are a growing cadre of women who have achieved career goals who are willing to reach out a hand of guidance to empower young women starting out and those who are looking to shift careers.
To that end, we choose to feature women who are tearing it up in our industry and doing great work, in different roles and sectors, as well as present some initiatives NTCA is involved in to support women in our industry. We choose to do this in March in solidarity with Women in Construction (WIC) Week March 5-11 (https://wicweek.org/); and International Women’s Day on March 8 (https://www.
And although we are not featuring The House That She Built this year (https://www.tileletter.com/the-house-that-she-built/) know that this initiative has grown into a movement and has expanded across the country. Find out more here: https://thehousethatshebuilt.com.
In addition to our female-focused content this month, also check out our Coverings preview and a summary of NTCA’s Emerging Leaders Program, which held its first in-person meeting at TISE. And in our Technical section, learn why a Jersey mud job is never a desirable “method” to adhere tile in your next job.
Educator Nancy Rathburn said it succinctly: “A strong woman understands that the gifts such as logic, decisiveness, and strength are just as feminine as intuition and emotional connection. She values and uses all of her gifts.” And in this issue we shine a light on women who are doing just this in our trade today.