The National Nuclear Security Administration is celebrating the women who make up the backbone of our Enterprise. These women work across areas like project management, maintenance, disposition, sustainability and more. Their contributions and accomplishments are what make our workforce so incredible, and their backgrounds and expertise ensure that workforce is just as vibrant and important as the missions they support.
Title: Senior Manager, Facilities Capital Planning and Acquisition
Program/Office: Sandia National Laboratories
Years in infrastructure: 20
How did you become interested in infrastructure or what was your career path to this point?
I grew up occasionally visiting job sites with my father and learning about construction from him during his construction law days. Those experiences from my formative years laid a foundation for my interest in understanding how buildings go together. That led me to pursue my bachelor’s and master’s degrees in architecture, ultimately becoming a licensed architect and working as a Project Architect and Construction Project Manager in both the design services and construction services industries. My career at Sandia has included navigating project management, facilities and space management, program management, and facilities and infrastructure planning — all critical components of overarching infrastructure stewardship.
Describe a proud moment or accomplishment.
When my son was in kindergarten, for career day he chose to share with his class about his mom, the architect (he even wore my hard hat, took my straight-edge, and had some old blueprints of mine to show). He was proud and excited to share with his classmates the impact that architects have, how they get to imagine and create the world around us, how they get to make Lego-structures a reality. It occurred to me at that moment that showing our kids how big and exciting this world can be is so important. I often recall that moment when the stresses of the daily grind become overwhelming, reminding myself that a career in infrastructure is vast and exciting and makes a difference.
Why do you like working for NNSA?
Working for NNSA is invigorating because you get to see our national security mission in its developmental and formative stages. Being part of an ultimate mission to protect and serve our nation is an honor and privilege. Growing up in Albuquerque, NM, I recall thinking, “one day it would be awesome to work at a place like Sandia,” because I knew it was a premier employer in the local environment and had a profound mission. And here I am!
Be strong and determined. This is an industry that can be a challenge for women, yet it is stronger for what and how women contribute. And don’t be afraid to rise and stand out.
*This is part of an ongoing series for Women’s History Month to recognize women in infrastructure at NNSA*