March 10, 2023

Women in Construction Week celebrates women who are ‘building America’

Women in Construction 2023

When the first Women in Construction Week was celebrated 25 years ago, women played a limited role in the industry, often working behind the scenes in offices and jobsite trailers. Although women still make up less than 15 percent of the construction industry workforce, their roles, responsibilities and respect have increased much more dramatically.

This week, we highlighted just a few of the women who are improving our construction, safety and business operations to both amplify the vital importance of all people on the Michels team and to advocate for more women to consider challenging, satisfying employment in the energy and infrastructure world.

Hailey Edlebeck joined Michels as an intern six years ago. Today, she is a project manager, leading construction of underground passageways for utility lines and conduits. It hasn’t always been easy, but it has offered plenty of opportunities to grow as a person and a construction professional.

“Being a woman in construction, your work ethic, grit, mental toughness and knowledge are constantly being questioned, underestimated and put to the test,” Hailey said. “I’ve learned to use this as an opportunity to better myself and continue to grow into a tougher, smarter person. Being underestimated gives you the advantage of having the element of surprise. You get to show people what you’re actually capable of.”

Kailynn Jones grew up in a family that owned a construction company and joined Michels five years ago as an intern. Today, as an aggregate inventory specialist, Kailynn splits her time between the office, her truck and at the controls of a drone.

“Being a woman in construction, I am given the opportunity to show that we can do our jobs just as well as the guys,” she said. “This has also provided me a unique opportunity to mentor and bond with other young women joining the construction industry.”

Riley Kies has three years of experience in the construction industry, including one at Michels. As a project engineer with Michels deep foundations group, Riley is proud to work on projects that will be enjoyed by future generations.

“Most people don’t even know that the type of work I do exists because usually it is underground, but I know that it is there,” she said. “I get to have a small but important part of essentially building America.”

Tina Braun joined our corporate security team two years ago after a career in law enforcement. She sees similarities and positive changes in both industries.

“Male-dominant professions are seeing the value in having good employees, regardless of gender,” she said.

Join our team and continue building opportunities for future generations of construction workers, regardless of gender.

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