The first week in March is National Women in Construction week. What better time than now to highlight Black women in the field of construction. These women have all or are in the process of building companies in a field that women, and especially black women are not often seen. From large corporations, to smaller more personal brands that operate more fully in the new era of media, these women are all blazing trails. Whether it is commercial construction or, home repair, these women all deserve to be acknowledged for their role in creating jobs and building companies that provide another option for members of the black community.
Cheryl McKissak Daniel
Cheryl McKissak Daniel, a 25 year veteran of the construction industry is the President & CEO of this family owned McKissak & McKissack. The oldest black owned construction company in the country, McKissack & McKissack has a long history of construction and engineering. Under her leadership the company is one of the members the Terminal One Group Association which is tasked with building new terminals at JFK Airport.
Amber Lawson is the founder of ASPIRE Construction in Atlanta. A Southern Polytechnic State University Graduate with a major in Construction Management, she has consistently worked to develop her firm and expand their footprint in Atlanta. A full service firm, ASPIRE creates solutions for a variety of clients with varying budgets in the commercial and residential areas.
Dudly Etienne-Harvard is the President of Dudly’s Professional Services which services Atlanta and South Florida. This company provides a wide range of technical services such as Project Management, Construction Administration, Community Outreach, and Permitting. They also help to coordinate and find the correct sub-contractors for the projects that they are involved in.
Bridget Booker is the President and Founder of reign Construction in Peoria, Illinois. The first journeyman Iron worker who is an African American woman, she brings her expertise to projects and her company has a specialty in iron working and rebar.
Being in construction isn’t just the big commercial projects. Being a software engineer and at home woodworker with a DIY blog is just as inspirational. Ashley Basnight helps show that black women are just as capable at the kind of home builds you normally see on HGTV .
Katherine Williams is truly a wonder. Not only is she an architect and project manager, but she also gives back. She has not only taught classes at Howard University, but also at Malcolm X Elementary school. She is a writer, and former editor of the National Organization of Minority Architects magazine and events organizer for Black Women in Architecture. As a resource, there are few people who are as well versed in all of the aspects of being in the world of construction as Katherine Williams.
Each of these women is working hard to blaze their own path in an area where there are many obstacles in their way. However, they won’t be denied and we want to commend them for their work during National Women in Construction Week.