Join your colleagues for a full day of energizing sessions focused on the challenges and opportunities for women in the construction industry in New England. We’ll start our day with a networking breakfast reception with a mimosa bar followed by incredible presentations by some amazing thought leaders sharing their experiences, ideas and strategies for taking charge of your career, work relationships and path in construction and related fields. This will be a one-of-a-kind experience with interactive elements to keep you in your toes and engaged and a keynote by Abduction Survivor and ABC News Contributor, Elizabeth Smart.
September 15th, 2023
8 – 3 PM
Farmington Polo Club
Registration includes breakfast/Mimosa bar, attendance at all sessions including Keynote with Elizabeth Smart, luncheon buffet, swag bag and post-event Cocktail Reception with Elizabeth Smart.
Early Bird Price
When purchased between
June 1 and August 15
When purchased between
August 16 and September 14
Table of 8
The abduction of Elizabeth Smart was one of the most followed child abduction cases of our time. Elizabeth was abducted on June 5, 2002, and her captors controlled her by threatening to kill her and her family if she tried to escape. Fortunately, the police safely returned Elizabeth back to her family on March 12, 2003, after being held a prisoner for 9 grueling months. Through this traumatic experience, Elizabeth has become an advocate for change related to child abduction, recovery programs, and National legislation. Elizabeth triumphantly testified before her captor and the world about the very private nightmare she suffered during her abduction, which led to conviction. The Founder of the “Elizabeth Smart Foundation”, Elizabeth has also helped promote The National AMBER Alert, The Adam Walsh Child Protection & Safety Act and other safety legislation to help prevent abductions. Elizabeth has chronicled her experiences in the New York Times best-selling book, "My Story." In this keynote, Elizabeth will share her story and message of resilience, hope and overcoming difficult experiences with our audience. She will also join us for a meet-and-greet during our closing cocktail reception on the beautiful patio at Farmington Polo Club.
8:00 am – 8:45 am
Registration & Networking
Enjoy a continental breakfast and mimosa bar while connecting with colleagues and friends. Get ready for a day full of learning, discovering, growing and connecting at the freshly renovated Farmington Polo Club.
8:45 am – 9:00 am
We’ll kick the day off with a few words from New England Women in Construction organizer, Barb Dimauro and hear from our Keynote Speaker Sponsor before we jump into our first general session of the day
9:00 am – 9:45 am
Drafting Your Own Plans for a Life in Construction
A career in construction can be more challenging as a woman – but it can also be more rewarding as well. Rather than trying to change who you are to accommodate your co-workers and clients, women in construction can work together to change the industry from within. Alex will share her secrets for identifying opportunities for growth in a male-dominated field and discuss resume-building activities such as continuing education, certificates and diversifying your skillsets. She will shine a light on the many challenges that are specific to women, such as balancing work and being the primary caregiver to children or parents, physical differences, stereotypes and expectations. Using her own experience, she will also share how she uses social media to encourage, educate, connect and inspire others who share a passion for construction, particularly women.
About Alexandra SmithAlex, AKA “The Little Operator” runs equipment, installs septic systems and is passionate about wastewater treatment. Newly self-employed, Alex is the daughter of an excavation contractor based in Alton, New Hampshire and has worked as an equipment operator for years before branching out on her own to learn septic design. Alex is a trade school graduate and dropped out of college to join the family business and found her passion in construction. Her experience has been one of extreme hard-work and determination and while she has been surrounded by many positive influences, she also sees the differences for women in the field. She is passionate about trade education and training and was a founding board member of Crew Collaborative, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization using innovative tactics to strengthen the blue-collar workforce. Alex has been a speaker at several industry events including CONEXPO CON/AGG.
9:45 am – 10:30 am
Speaker: Barb Allen
Identifying, overcoming, and eliminating the challenges women face climbing the construction career ladder.
In today’s construction industry, the 4 primary challenges that exist for women wanting to advance in leadership roles can be related to ladder rungs that are Broken, Missing, Slippery, and Sticky. Utilizing her personal experiences, Barb will not only talk about what causes these hazards and how to overcome them, but also how we can work together to build safer, more equitable leadership ladders within our industry.
Barb grew up being told she could do and be anything she wanted. She didn’t face real adversity until she graduated college with a degree in Construction Management and began her climb in the field from Carpenter to Superintendent. Not being wanted, being underestimated, and constantly having to prove herself were catalysts for her success. Barb not only became a successful jobsite superintendent, but went on to hold positions as Pre-Construction Manager, Project Executive and Operations Director. Today she is a Consultant, Trainer, & Public Speaker utilizing her experiences to increase the success of women in construction, and the industry as a whole.
10:30 am – 12:00 pm
Pay It Forward: Mentoring the Next Generation of Women in Construction
Successful women in construction have an opportunity to guide, support and pave the way for women starting out. Mentoring – whether formal or informal – is a critical element of ensuring that the number of women entering the field continues to grow. Mentors provide feedback, support, access to networking and professional development and a sounding board for mentees. And let’s not benefits for mentors – those who mentor are rewarded with a fresh perspective, a boost in enthusiasm and improved leadership skills.
This panel will offer advice from proven leaders in mentoring women in construction for those interested in developing a formal program, volunteering within the framework of an association program or finding a mentor.
Marcie Addy – Moderator
Marcie is the Director of Education for the Construction Education Center in Plainville, the training arm for the Associated Builders and Contractors of Connecticut. The CEC is a non-profit trade school specializing in apprenticeship training, continuing education, safety, and professional development. With over 10 years of program implementation and development experience, Marcie’s expertise in higher education accreditation gifts her the ability to be committed to enhancing the student experience as well as educating middle school and high school-aged students about the benefits of pursuing a career in the trades. She is certified as a Master Trainer by the National Center for Construction Education and Research. She earned her BA in Corporate Communications from Elon University and resides in Rocky Hill, CT with her husband and two sons.
Carolina Cavalcante – Panelist
Carolina grew up with her parents always being involved in a construction or remodel project, and somehow thru her career landed in this field herself! She is currently President at Tilcon CT, which she joined in April 2022 as Chief Operating Officer (COO). Her professional career with CRH, Tilcon’s parent company, began over 15 years ago as a Strategic Business Analyst in Atlanta, GA. She also had the opportunity to work in Amsterdam, Netherlands with CRH’s Europe Materials Division before returning to the United States as Sales Manager of Aggregates for Texas Materials. Carolina holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Industrial and Systems Engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology, and a Master of Business Administration Degree from Harvard Business School. She spent her early childhood living in several countries and was raised mostly in Brazil. She moved to Farmington, CT in May 2022 and enjoys spending her weekends with her husband and two boys, typically on a soccer field.
Kathryn Gagnon – Panelist
Katy is a Senior Project Manager at Langan Engineering in New Haven. She has been at Langan for 19 years and is a Professional Engineer in the State of Connecticut and a LEED Accredited Professional. As a civil engineer, Katy works on a variety of land development projects across Connecticut and has over 30 active and completed projects in New Haven. Some of these projects include: the redevelopment of Dixwell Plaza; the Dr. Reginald Mayo Early Childhood School; the Boathouse at Canal Dock; the Hill-to-Downtown residential buildings; a variety of projects on the Yale Campus, including the Beinecke Rare Book Library and the Schwarzman Center.
Katy also serves on the State Advisory Board of the ACE Mentor Program, a nationwide program serving high school students interested in architecture, construction and engineering. She was previously the chair of the New Haven Advisory board and served as a mentor in the New Haven area. Additionally, Katy is her office’s liaison for Women@Langan, a program internal to her company that promotes mentorship and empowerment of women within the firm.
Outside of work, Katy is the Chair of the Alumnae Advisory Committee for the Pi Beta Phi Chapter at Yale University. She has served on the committee since 2006. In this role she works closely with the collegiate members supporting the chapter and mentoring the women on the executive board. Katy lives in North Haven with her husband, Dave, son, Patrick, and their rescue mutt, Otis.
Amy Ray – Panelist
An award-winning professional services marketer, and designer with more than 20 years of industry experience, Amy blends design expertise with a deep understanding of business development, communications, and brand strategy. As Director of Business Development & Marketing for Babbidge Construction Company, Amy’s leads market positioning, develops client relationship experiences, and builds brand development and communications efforts—a role that is influenced by her background in fine arts, her experience as a creative director, and a lifelong love of the AEC industry.
Amy believes in community outreach and volunteers for several professional organizations. In addition to serving as the Vice President for Professional Women in Construction Connecticut (PWC CT,) she serves on the Programs and Communications committees. Amy is also an active member of the Society for Marketing Professional Services (SMPS CT) and Women in Bio Connecticut (WiB CT). Amy earned her BFA in Graphic Design from the University of Hartford. In her free time, Amy enjoys spending time at the beach and attending sporting events with her family.
12:00 pm – 1:00 pm
Take a breather and enjoy a delicious luncheon prepared by the chef at Farmington Polo Club.
1:00 pm – 2:00 pm
with Elizabeth Smart “Overcoming Adversity”
The abduction of Elizabeth Smart was one of the most followed child abduction cases of our time. Elizabeth was abducted on June 5, 2002, and her captors controlled her by threatening to kill her and her family if she tried to escape. Fortunately, the police safely returned Elizabeth back to her family on March 12, 2003, after being held a prisoner for 9 grueling months. Through this traumatic experience, Elizabeth has become an advocate for change related to child abduction, recovery programs, and National legislation. Elizabeth triumphantly testified before her captor and the world about the very private nightmare she suffered during her abduction, which led to conviction. The Founder of the “Elizabeth Smart Foundation”, Elizabeth has also helped promote The National AMBER Alert, The Adam Walsh Child Protection & Safety Act and other safety legislation to help prevent abductions. Elizabeth has chronicled her experiences in the New York Times best-selling book, “My Story.”
In this keynote, Elizabeth will share her story and message of resilience, hope and overcoming difficult experiences with our audience.
2:00 pm – 2:30 pm
Finish off a wonderful day well-spent with cocktails and dessert on the beautiful patio at Farmington Polo Club. Elizabeth Smart will be on hand for casual conversation with our attendees, speakers and sponsors.