This editorial letter originally appeared in Storm Water Solutions March/April 2022 issue.
March is Women’s History Month, and to honor that, we have moved our Women in Water coverage to this print issue. In the following pages, there are two Q&As with women in the industry. They shared with SWS how they got their starts, challenges they’ve overcome and more. While they both shared many great insights, two stand out to me.
One, keeping an open mind. As one of the women featured, Brooke Schiavone, president of Jobsite Products Inc., shared that keeping an open mind allows us to realize there are many avenues in storm water and reminds us that this industry is relatively young. There is a lot to learn, and keeping an open mind can only help in that effort, especially as the water industry comes together as a whole — storm water, wastewater, drinking water, etc. — to solve water quality issues.
And speaking of the industry coming together, a point that Janette Wolf, the other Q&A participant and a senior project manager with CEC Inc., brought up is the importance of fostering work relationships. She says that if you like the people you work with, your job will feel more like a community than a chore. I think both of these points highlight the importance of teamwork in the industry, which is a point that has also recently been brought up in our Dropping By video series. It sounds cheesy, but we all live on the same planet, and working together to mitigate climate change and intense weather event effects, is important. I know it takes more than teamwork to get things done, but it’s a good start.
While both points are thoughts we all know, it’s good to be reminded of just how important they are. As I write this, I am gearing up to attend the IECA Annual Conference & Expo, the 50th anniversary of the event. Just a couple days after that I’ll attend the WEF /AWWA YP Summit. I’m eager to kick off the year with both of these events, and I’m sure they will foster innovation, teamwork and leadership — the notions our Women in Water special section highlight, as well.