September 18-20, 2024
Phoenix, AZ

AEC Sessions

Learn from and connect with leading women in the U.S. architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) industry. All sessions will provide actionable insights and valuable takeaways for women professionals at all levels of the AEC market.

Thursday, September 19

8:20am – 9:20am
Maisha Christian

Foolproof Frameworks for Presenting Innovative Ideas & Leading Meetings

Maisha Christian, Owner & Head Coach @Beauty & the Boss

Communication skills aren’t just for presenters and motivational speakers. Learning to communicate well is one of the most important skills leaders and change-makers can develop. By doing so, individuals can achieve winning outcomes for themselves, their project teams, and their companies. In this opening keynote, Maisha Christian will present a simple process that, when applied, will help attendees present complex ideas, get buy-in from decision makers, and move initiatives forward.

9:20am – 9:50am
Rosa Sheng

The J.E.D.I. Agenda: An Intersectional Approach to Designing a Just Future

Rosa Sheng, Vice President, Higher Education Studio Leader, Director of Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion @SmithGroup; Founding Chair @Equity by Design

Our society is at a critical inflection point. The choices and actions we make today will determine our collective future. This is contextualized by a historic confluence of catastrophic events in 2020 — a global pandemic, severe economic disruption, racial violence, civil unrest, environmental peril and rapid disruption by AI. A perfect storm exposes the intersectional impacts of legacy systems of societal and environmental harm and oppression — still endangering BIPOC, LGBTQIA+, Neurodiverse and other marginalized identities.The resulting shifts and disruptions that we face could result in peril or potential to overcome the adversity surrounding us. Real and necessary progress towards Justice in our world will only be achieved when we are willing to do the work to expose and dismantle the intricate web of racist and unjust policies and practices that have resulted in multigenerational inequities with harmful outcomes for many. Given the challenging and complex conditions in which we find ourselves today, we must commit to adapting towards a collective regenerative agenda to thrive.

1:15pm – 2:15pm

Lessons and Action Steps from Women in the AEC C-Suite

Mia Blanchett
Wendy Cohen
Shannon Coomes

Mia Blanchett, CEO @HGA
Wendy Cohen, President, CEO @Kitchell Corporation
Shannon Coomes, President @Hill Fire Protection

A panel of AEC firm executives will discuss a variety of timely topics, including:
• their career journey
• the single-biggest moment/decision in their career
• advice/lessons for growing your firm and advancing your career
• DEI initiatives at their firms — what's working, what's not
• how to develop A-list talent
• their outlook and plans for 2024 and beyond

2:20pm – 3:20pm
Danielle Feroleto

How To Develop A-List Talent at AEC Firms

Danielle Feroleto, Founder @Small Giants

Danielle Feroleto, CPSM, will present proven strategies and tactics for mentoring and training junior and mid-level AEC team members to help them reach "A-list" status. She will also provide advice for seasoned AEC professionals who are looking to advance to senior-level status.

3:40pm – 4:40pm

How To Become a Change Agent For Your Teams and At Your Firm

Speaker, TBA

Ideas and conversions are a great first step. The hard part is effecting change within organizations and companies. This talk will offer prescriptive advice on how to become an effective change agent for your teams and your company.

Friday, September 20

9:00am – 10:10am


Speaker, TBA