VTCA Diversity Equity and Inclusion Task Force Momentum Continues

Member and Industry News,

The DEI Task Force objective was to assess VTCA’s current efforts and provide recommendations to the Board on continuing a path toward more inclusion. The group recognized a need for continuous improvement and VTCA leadership has committed to this effort through VTCA’s values statement:

Transportation construction is a complex, challenging, and evolving endeavor.  Successful efforts require people of diverse backgrounds, opinions, perspectives, experiences, and ideas to bring solutions and maximize engagement.  We value diversity of people, cultures, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, language, and nationality to build better people, teams, and communities.  
Our member companies drive success through diverse partnerships and impactful connections to enhance a positive transportation construction climate. 

The Task Force identified inclusion as a key area.  VTCA has popular events and meetings across the state which are informative and social.  But if you are not a golfer or shooter – some events may not feel like a good fit.  The Task Force does not recommend eliminating those core functions which serve a significant purpose, rather VTCA should look to expand inclusion opportunities.

VTCA integrated new attendees at the 2022 Winter Meeting by ensuring newer attendees had opportunities to connect with others during social events, breakfast, and dinner.  In addition, small group social events will be expanded beyond traditional golf and shooting events.  Finally, VTCA looked to incorporate a more diverse group of speakers.

Promoting current members with SWaM Certification has been in the works as well.  New this year in the Directory is a listing of certified SWaM vendors.  Members can now more easily identify which members are SWaM & DBE certified.  Also, the Blue Top has been highlighting SWaM members in the highlights section.  It’s another small, but purposeful way to keep everyone included.

Finally, the task force went out and recruited several additional Contractor members to serve.  Those contractors who have volunteered are:

Gretchen Ostroff – Hampton Roads Connector Partners
Ryan Terry – Lane Construction
Melissa Sowers – Branch Construction
Brian Conrad – Lee Hy Paving

We will continue to move the path forward, even as it is uncharted.  The key takeaway is, if you have ideas or suggestions – please reach out to one of the DEI Task Force members or VTCA staff below.

A special thanks to the Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Task Force:

Amy Morris – T3 Designs (Committee Chair)
Jan Holt – Chaney Enterprises
Mo Kim – Rinker Design Associates
Mimi Kronish – RK&K
Kamran Khalilian – AECOM
Bethany Murphy – Scott Insurance
Jon Harman – Shirley Contracting (VTCA President)
Avtar Singh – CES Consulting