My Daughter plans on saving the world. It's a commendable goal. While her dream may be lofty, I'll do all I can to help her along.

But she should have opted for a more modest goal. Recently there have been a few bumps in her path. First, there was the doctor bill for the cold she caught after spending the night in a cardboard box in an alley outside her warm dorm room while protesting unfair municipal housing. Then she learned the importance of the check engine light, right after her car stopped on the highway. And finally, her misconception regarding her new iPhone helped her learn water-resistant doesn't mean waterproof.

But today I'm thinking her road may have a few less bumps. She's been accepted into a college sorority. It's amazing how fast she has matured thanks to the influence of other young women with whom she interacts. Their assistance has helped my daughter improve in her education efforts, socially and professionally.

Growth, both professional and personal, is much easier when there are some good mentors.

Four years ago, I was proud to help organize our Women in Concrete Luncheon and Forum at World of Concrete. Industry response was strong and poignant. Women in our industry have been connecting through our efforts. You have responded to provide the concrete industry interesting speakers, profiling leaders, and reports of inspiring stories of success in what has been a male industry.

But now there needs to be a change if we are really ready to make a difference. Like my daughter who is benefiting from her sorority experience, the women working in the concrete world need a more formalized mentoring and social networking effort.

Image

Kimberly Kayler

Image

Kari Moosmann

Women in Concrete Alliance

Based on several surveys, Kimberly Kayler and Kari Moosmann have begun a project. The Women in Concrete Alliance will soon provide year-round networking opportunities for women.

Kayler is well-known in the industry as president of Constructive Communication Inc., a construction public relations firm. Moosmann was formerly the managing editor of CONCRETE CONSTRUCTION magazine and started the Women in Concrete columns you read in TCP and the luncheons.

Women in Concrete Alliance will work with Hanley Wood in developing the Women in Concrete Breakfast each year. The Alliance will monitor the Women in Concrete Group on the LinkedIn Web site and the Women in Concrete twitter postings at www.twitter.com/WomeninConcrete.

And at the Women in Concrete Breakfast in February, the Alliance will debut a Facebook page and Web site. The Facebook page will be another way for women to interact and comment on issues and trends. The purpose of the Web site is to provide news, mentoring opportunities, feature innovative women in the industry, and provide updates on future regional meetings. The Alliance plans to organize these small regional meetings to provide women in specific areas the opportunity to interact face to face.

They will outline their plans on Feb. 3 during the Women in Concrete Breakfast.

I hope our new partnership will continue to spur not only the development of the women who play such an important role in our industry. I hope this effort will improve our entire industry.

You can get involved by:

  • joining the Women in Concrete group on LinkedIn.
  • following Women in Concrete on Twitter
  • attending the Women in Concrete Breakfast at World of Concrete.
  • To sign up for the Women in Concrete Breakfast, visit. www.worldofconcrete.com.