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2013 – A Year of Building our WiD Community

We hope you continue to join us!

Several months ago, I asked my friend Kristin, “Why are women (and men) joining Women in Design?”  The first phrase was, “WiD is different.  It focuses on the creation of community.”  WiD is heading into its 8th year of creating community and our fourth year as a non-profit.  As with all youth, we are becoming sturdier and stronger on the legs of women who have supported and served the organization.  As a result, this year our theme is ‘Community Building/Building Community’…..thank you, Kristin!

It is true.  Women in Design strives to create community. Our riches are in the collaboration of architects, landscape architects, urban planners, all the engineering disciplines, contractors, interior designers, management consultants, marketing experts, to name only a few.  We are women AND MEN!  We welcome anyone who supports the mission of encouraging women to follow their passions in the careers that encompass the built environment.  While our programming focuses on women’s contributions and achievements, the support of our male counterparts and friends, husbands and partners, significant others and boyfriends, as well as our non-industry female friends and partners is absolutely essential to advancing diversity in these professions.  Most of our board member’s partners and spouses are members of Women in Design! It is all about creating a supportive community.

Our theme will manifest in a VIP Party that celebrates the end of 2012 and the beginning of 2013.  Mark your calendars for January 25, 2013, and check the website, FACEBOOK and Linked In for additional information and location.   Bring your friends and your completed 2012 punch cards for an opportunity to expand your own community, win a few prizes, bedazzle a construction apron, partake in a photo booth, and generally enjoy the new friends and colleagues you’ve found and made this year.

As for the rest of 2013, you can look for a feature on other Colorado non-profits that focus on women as well as working to establish alliances with other design and construction industry groups who also focus on women.  If you have ideas or are a part of a group that would like to partner with Women in Design, please contact me (Cheryl.Bicknell@WIDDenver.org) or any of our other board and steering committee members http://www.widdenver.org/about/meet-the-committee-draft/.

If you are a woman and a principal and/or owner of your organization, please consider becoming a part of the WiD-Denver Women Principal’s Group.  The focus is to create community to support women who are in leadership roles and encourage women who are working toward this goal.

In June WID will celebrate community with the American Institute of Architects’ National Convention being hosted in Denver.  Mark your calendars for June 19 when the National AIA’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee presents Equal Roles : Equal Voices.  The half day seminar will provide design and construction firms reasons and tools for creating gender and cultural equity in all the roles in a firm from architect to administration.  Does it pay to have men and women in equal numbers?  What is the research?  What is the ‘proof’?  Please watch for additional information and mark your calendars! It promises to be a lively conversation.

You can trust that Women in Design will offer an 8×8 in the spring, Habitat for Humanity build days in the fall, a Keystone speaker in October, networking hours, artworking and museum tours along the way…and watch out because we might be putting together a Pret-a-Porter team again!

Finally, for all the community building and volunteer focus that WiD provides, we are asking our members to support us as we ask for an increase in our individual membership fees.  On January 1, we are increasing the membership fee to $65.00 per year and adding a student/senior citizen membership for $35 per year.  The quality of our programming depends on you.  Please watch for additional information.  If you have questions, again, you are welcome to contact me.

We look forward to increasing our influence on the construction community and celebrating the built environment.  Please continue to come along with us, invite your friends no matter which gender with which they identify, and support women as they achieve their dreams.

-written by Cheryl Bicknell

WiD Denver Executive Co Chair

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