Professional women in public works featuring the new (PW)2 infoNOW Community!

Susan M. Hann, P.E., AICP
Deputy City Manager
City of Palm Bay, Florida
Member, APWA Leadership and Management Committee

What adjectives do you use to describe seventy minutes of compelling, riveting and enthralling conversation about life in public works? Well, I would certainly start with compelling, riveting and enthralling, but would probably add fascinating and captivating too. These words describe the 2006 Congress session entitled "A View from the Top: Women in Public Works Talk about their Lives and Careers." MaryAnn Marrocolo, Mariana Llanso, Sharon Subadan and Patty Hilderbrand all gave their perspectives on life in the public works profession and shared a few personal stories that had us all, well, riveted. Although an upcoming issue of the APWA Reporter will give you a more in-depth review of this outstanding session, the value of women involved in the public works profession is unquestionable—and the 2006 Congress events showed that women are interested in networking together to learn and grow in the profession.

The Women in Public Works Breakfast, with another compelling presentation by APWA Past President Judy Mueller, had over 100 attendees at 7 a.m. Central Time—meaning most folks had to get up extra early to be there! At the conclusion of our breakfast session we talked about what else could and should be done to help women network. This led to the formation of a subcommittee of the Diversity and Leadership and Management Committees—working to bring more opportunities to women in the public works profession.

Our first endeavor is the creation of a new infoNOW Community that will be focused on women in public works. The new community—pwpw@infonow.apwa.net—will feature informational contributions as well as provide a forum for women to talk about their issues in public works. Jennifer Adams, the Chair of our (PW)2 Subcommittee, will greet the new community with an introductory e-mail to those who signed up at Congress as interested in women's issues in public works. However, we'd like our network to grow, grow, grow—so sign up for the Professional Women in Public Works infoNOW Community via the APWA website and "get connected"!

Susan M. Hann can be reached at (321) 952-3411 or hanns@palmbayflorida.org.