On March 5, the Associated General Contractors of Massachusetts (AGC MA) held its annual 2020 Building Women in Construction (BWiC) Inspire Awards at the Westin Copley Place Hotel in Boston. The awards celebrate the most exemplary women in construction who demonstrate leadership, generosity, innovation, and unwavering commitment to their career, colleagues, and industry.
by Sara Mannes
The event featured guest speaker Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito, who spoke on her career in the A/E/C industry and the state’s initiatives to prepare young people for careers and closing the skills gap. Polito remarked on “changing the way we educate kids” to demonstrate project-based learning, developing real-world problem solving skills, and “starting early” by introducing the building trades to elementary school-aged kids.
Marianne Monte, chief people officer at Shawmut Design & Construction, served as the program host. She gave remarks on her career path, accomplishments, and integral leadership with respect to bringing more young people into the building trades as a human resources executive.
Monte then announced the 2020 award recipients, selected by BWiC’s seven judges: Kristin Poulin, Structure Tone, Inc.; Petrina Garbarini, Harvard University; Doug DiCerbo, Sentry Hill Financial Advisors, Northwestern Mutual; Kathleen McNeil, MP Boston; Barbara Hansberry, MSBA; Phil Hammond, WIT; and Joseph Barra, Robinson+Cole.
Janet Chrisos, deputy director at Massachusetts State College Building Authority (MSCBA) was presented with the BWiC Mentor of the Year Award. Chrisos has more than 20 years of industry experience, having played a central role in delivering over $1 billion in new construction and the renovation of universities and community colleges. Her commitment to sharing knowledge and experience to benefit others, as well as her ongoing contributions to AGC MA and CREW Boston, have established Chrisos as a valuable mentor for other women in the construction industry.
Valerie Stone, safety director at T.G. Gallagher, was named BWiC Emerging Leader of the Year. In her role, Stone inspires a field staff of over 200 men and women, and has significantly improved company-wide safety programs, practices, and procedures.
Sabina Kintzer Shorey, cost engineer with Turner Construction Company, was awarded BWiC Rising Star of the Year. Shorey’s impressive engineering and cost analyst career has led to her overseeing the financial controls for numerous large projects including Tishman Speyer’s Pier 4 Office and Condominium Tower and the Boston Consulting Group Fitout.
Finally, the BWiC judge panel awarded the 2020 Tradeswoman of the Year Award to Savy Francis. After graduating from Building Pathways, Francis joined Pipefitters Local 537 and E.M. Duggan as a pipefitter, and has worked on a range of large-scale projects in Boston. Savy has served as a mentor, advocate, and organizer for women in the trades as both a mainstay for “Tradeswoman Tuesday” outreach events and as a member of the Massachusetts Building Trades Futures Committee.
Sara Mannes is the digital media manager at High-Profile Monthly.