February 2, 2018 - 8:00am to 5:30pm


This event is SOLD OUT --  Please email office@seaoi.org to be added to the wait list.

SEAOI's Women in Structural Engineering (WiSE) is pleased to partner with Women in Restoration & Engineering (WiRE) and Chicago Women in Architecture (CWA) to present this one-day Symposium. 


Join us for a day of networking and exploring topics including Equity and Engagement, Work-Life Balance, Generational Views on the Industry, Navigating Career Choices, Super Tall Structures, Material Restoration, and Project Management Expectations.

See who's coming!



8:00 am           Registration and Light Breakfast
8:30 am Welcome and Introduction to WiRE, CWA, SEAOI WiSE, and the Symposium
8:50 am Structural Engineering Engagement and Equity (SE3)
Jennifer Pazdon, Cast Connex
9:30 am The Work-Life Balancing Act 
(Panel Discussion)
Moderated by Natalie Hicks, Wright Heerema Architects
10:00 am Break with Networking Breakout Session
10:40 am Super Tall Structures
Sara Beardsley, Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture
Hi-Sun Choi, Thornton Tomasetti
11:20 am Generational Views: Bra Burners, Xers, and Millennials
(Panel Discussion)
Moderated by Amanda Mann, Kohler
11:50 am Group Photo
12:00 pm Lunch
1:00 pm  Art and Science of Matching Historic Concrete
Amy Lamb Woods, International Masonry Institute
1:40 pm S(mall) M(edium) L(arge) Firms – Navigating the Benefits and Challenges when Crafting Your Career
(Panel Discussion)
Moderated by Jennifer Traut-Todaro, American Institute of Steel Construction
2:10 pm Break with Open Networking
2:40 pm Project Management Expectations
Elizabeth Ortner, Studio 31a
Suzi Reinhold, Revive Architecture
3:20 pm Keynote Presentation - Educational Attainment v. Professional Advancement for Women in Architecture and Engineering
Felicia S. Davis, Interim President, Olive-Harvey College
(formerly Chicago Building Commissioner)
4:20 pm Closing
4:30 pm Cocktail Hour



University Center
525 S. State Street
Chicago, IL

A private space is available for nursing mothers. Contact Marsha Harman to arrange to use the space.



The registration fee is just $75 for members of SEAOI, WiRE, or CWA, and $100 for non-members.  The 2017 Symposium sold out; register early to secure your spot!



Support the Women in the Built World Symposium! Sponsorship is $500, and includes your logo on the event website and email marketing materials, and acknowledgement at the Symposium.  Become a sponsor today!


About the Speakers

Jennifer Anna Pazdon, PE
Engineer, Technical Sales
Cast Connex Corporation

Jennifer Anna Pazdon, PE, M. Sc. Eng., is a licensed structural engineer in New York state with over 12 years of experience in design of structures. She received her Bachelors from Carnegie Mellon University and her Masters from Princeton University where her studies focused on aesthetics, efficiency, and economy in structural design. After working in SE consulting in NYC and SE Asia, in 2016 she joined Cast Connex to open the NYC office and provide engineering, design-assist, and client-collaboration support.

Natalie Hicks, AIA, LEED AP BD+C
Wright Heerema Architects

Natalie Hicks is an architect with a passion for sustainable design and social equity. She received a Master of Architecture, Structures Option, and MBA from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She serves as President for Chicago Women in Architecture as well as Co-Chair of the Emerging Professionals for Illinois Green Alliance. Natalie enjoys working closely with clients to solve problems and provide solutions through creative design. In her spare time, she enjoys exploring the city, relaxing with friends, reading, watching superhero TV shows and movies, and everything Star Wars.

Jennifer Keegan
Regional Manager, Building Sciences

Jennifer Keegan has nearly 20 years of experience as a building enclosure consultant specializing in assessment, design, and remediation of building enclosure systems. She has investigated and analyzed failures of building enclosures, designed repairs, provided construction administration services, performed condition surveys, and completed design peer reviews of facade assemblies including wall cladding systems, fenestrations, roofing, and waterproofing. Ms. Keegan provides technical leadership within the industry as Chair of the Roofing and Waterproofing Subcommittee D08.22; educational chair for National Women in Roofing, board member for the Women in Construction Conference, and co-founder of the Women’s Construction Initiative in NYC.

April Hughes, AIA
Principal / Managing Partner
HPZS Architects

April Hughes, the 2013 AIA Illinois and AIA Chicago Dubin Family Young Architect of the Year, is the owner and Managing Principal of HPZS, a full-service woman-owned architectural firm specializing in combating climate change through adaptive reuse. She is a recent recipient of the DuPont Emerging Leader Scholarship at the 2016 Design Futures Council Leadership Summit on Sustainable Design, is a U.S. Small Business Administration Emerging Leader 2016, and is a 2017 Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Scholar and advocates for women in the profession at all levels, from intern to executive. 

Robin Owens, Assoc. AIA
Senior Project Manager
McKissack & McKissack

Robin Owens has a BS in Architecture from the University of Illinois. She has passion for the arts and architecture and combines this with desire to help others better themselves for their careers or personal aspirations. Her inspiration thrives on industry related efforts involving strategic alignment of sustainability, K-12 education, and design implementation for barrier-free/accessibility needs (ADA). She has 17 years of experience in architecture and project management. She is currently a Senior Project Manager with McKissack & McKissack and is approaching her 10-year milestone. She loves the idea of interrelating health and sustainability in the built environment, as well as within her own physical regimen. 

Sara Beardsley, AIA
Senior Architect
Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture 

During her 15 years of practicing architecture, Sara Beardsley has led and contributed to many locally and internationally renowned projects. She has advanced awareness of technical and sustainable design issues related to tall buildings, both new and existing, and heightened the discussion of large-scale buildings’ contribution to carbon emissions. Sara is an expert on energy performance with a special focus on supertall towers and the regeneration of cities. She has lectured widely, and has been recognized both within the Chicago community as well as internationally as a leading proponent of energy modernization and performative design.

Hi-Sun Choi, PE., LEED AP
Senior Principal
Thornton Tomasetti

Hi Sun Choi has more than 20 years of experience in structural analysis, investigation, design and review of a variety of building types, including commercial, cultural, mixed-use, residential and aviation. Her expertise includes the design of supertall buildings for seismic risk assessment, building motion due to wind, performance-based design and waterfront developments on reclaimed land. Hi Sun’s experience includes work in the United States, and internationally in South Korea, the United Arab Emirates, Azerbaijan, and Vietnam. She has lectured at several universities and served as an adjunct professor at the Pratt Institute and the New Jersey Institute of Technology.

Amanda Mann, PE
Principal Engineer
Kohler Co.

Amanda Mann is a Principal Engineer-Team Leader with Kohler Company for the Construction Engineering and Management department to support Kohler’s global construction projects. With over 20 years’ experience in structural engineering and architecture, her background includes design, investigation, and evaluation of existing structures, including seismic assessments and upgrades, and a passion for preservation of historic and landmark structures. Amanda also enjoys mentoring future female leaders through Girls on the Run and Kohler’s College Intern and STEM outreach programs. 

Pamela J. Hutter, AIA
Principal Architect
Hutter Architects, Ltd.

As principal of Hutter Architects, Ltd., Pam Hutter’s work as a designer, architect, and construction administrator has brought her success within the high end residential, educational, and hospitality sectors since 1998. Hutter Architects, Ltd. creates spaces where life is to be lived on an extraordinary level.  Home, Educational, or Hospitality spaces can be a backdrop and a springboard that catapult one into who they want to be. “When your home or workspace supports who you are in every way, you are freer to go into the world and do extraordinary things,” Hutter explains.   

Cierine Nicolas PE, LEED AP
Associate Principal 

Cierine Nicolas has over 18 years of experience managing expansive, interdisciplinary engineering teams on complex projects. A specialist in large, high-performance buildings, Cierine has experience in mixed-use developments, hospitality, residential, educational, cultural, athletic, and government sectors. Prior to Arup, she was Vice President at a large consulting engineering firm and active within Chicago architecture, engineering, and real estate. Cierine holds Bachelor of Science degrees in electrical engineering and molecular and cellular biology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She was awarded a graduate fellowship in electrical engineering, theoretical physics, and integrative physiology jointly offered by Stanford, Princeton, and UIUC. 

Tess Massaroni
Assistant Superintendent
Mortenson Construction 

Tess Massaroni embraces the challenges and rewards of bringing construction projects to life as an assistant superintendent. Currently working on the new Milwaukee Bucks Arena in downtown Milwaukee, she oversees the enclosure construction and looks forward to cheering on her alma mater, Marquette Golden Eagles, in the arena when it opens later this year. An avid runner, Tess enjoys long runs outdoors and is rarely deterred by Wisconsin's toughest weather conditions. 

Amy Lamb Woods, PE
Director of Technical Education
International Masonry Institute

Amy Lamb Woods, P.E., is a Director of Technical Education with the International Masonry Institute (IMI). Her background combines architecture, historic preservation, and civil engineering materials. Ms. Woods has over seventeen years of experience in the field of forensic engineering of building materials, both historic and contemporary structures. Her experience includes facade and failure investigations with materials such as brick masonry, terra cotta, stone, concrete, terrazzo, and stucco. She is a Board member for the Association for Preservation Technology International (APT) and founder of Women in Restoration & Engineering (WiRE).

Jennifer Traut-Todaro, SE, LEED AP
Senior Solutions Center Advisor
American Institute of Steel Construction

Jennie Traut-Todaro is a Senior Advisor in the AISC Steel Solutions Center.  She has worked for a handful of engineering and A/E firms.  She has been involved with SEAOI, serving on the Board of Directors and is currently the Co-Chari of WiSE.  She recently joined the NCSEA SE3 Committee as Recruitment and Communications Chair.

Belinda O'Kelly, AIA, LEED BD+C
O'Kelly Kasprak

With a strong background in the hospitality industry, Belinda O’Kelly leads a talented studio of architects and designers to curate the guest experience through design in hotels, restaurants, bars, clubs, entertainment and specialty spaces.  Passion for hospitality design led to founding a successful design firm, O’Kelly Kasprak, alongside partner David Kasprak.

Kristen Erickson, SE
Manager, Technical Services - Structural
Pepper Construction Company

Kristen Erickson specializes in creating highly intricate models using Tekla Structures to be used for design, coordination, estimating, detailing, fabrication, erection, and facilities management.  She joined Pepper in 2015 with over seven years of structural design experience.  Kristen is a featured speaker and trainer on topics about Tekla, BIM and IPD.

Suzanne Pennasilico, SPHR
Chief Human Resources Officer
Skidmore, Owings, & Merrill LLP

As Chief Human Resources Officer of SOM Suzanne delivers integrated Human Resources solutions for a diverse group of multi-national employees. Suzanne received a BA from Providence College, an MA from New York University and is a certified Senior Human Resources Professional. She is a member of the Society for Human Resources Management and Development and the AIA HR Large Firm Roundtable. Suzanne serves on the boards of the Beverly Willis Architecture Foundation and PS 3 Til 6.

A. Elizabeth Ortner, AIA, LEED AP
Studio 31a

Elizabeth Ortner is an Architect and Principal of Studio31a. From a small Iowa town to the windy city, her career started in a small architectural firm then moved to a large firm where her experience grew from small residential projects to expansive industrial and commercial ventures. Yet it was the restoration work on Carson Pierre Scott, Blackstone Hotel and the Museum of Science and Industry that grounded Elizabeth’s compassion for historical preservation. In 2010, Elizabeth started Studio 31a and it is under this umbrella that she received her latest award for Preservation Excellence from the City of Chicago. 

Suzi Reinhold, RA
Revive Architecture 

Suzi Reinhold is a licensed architect with over 15 years’ experience in historic preservation and building envelope restoration. She is also currently serving on the Evanston Preservation Commission. Ms. Reinhold founded Revive Architecture, a restoration-focused architectural firm, in 2015.  She has worked on a wide variety of project types, but focuses primarily on educational buildings. Her extensive knowledge in vintage masonry facades has contributed to many landmark restoration projects including the Shedd Aquarium, 7 West Madison, and 600 South Michigan. 

Felicia S. Davis
Interim President 
Olive-Harvey College 
(Former Commissioner of the City of Chicago’s Department of Buildings and Executive Director of the Public Building Commission of Chicago)

Felicia S. Davis is the Interim President of Olive-Harvey College, one of the seven City Colleges of Chicago (CCC).  Most recently, Felicia served as the Executive Director of the Public Building Commission, a public developer, where she was responsible for the management large-scale municipal construction projects.  Felicia has also held roles as Commissioner of the City of Chicago’s Department of Buildings, Executive Director of the Mayor’s Office of Public Engagement and First Deputy Chief of Staff for Mayor Rahm Emanuel.  Prior to joining Mayor Emanuel’s staff, Felicia spent ten years in administration at Kendall College, rising to Vice President of Operations and Student Administration, having directed student affairs, alumni relations, and career services.  Felicia began her career with the Chicago Police Department (CPD), where Felicia served with distinction, for 10 years. Felicia is a native Chicagoan and life-long resident of the City’s South Side, where she resides with her family. A dynamic leader with diverse work experience, Felicia is deeply committed to the efficient operation of good government.





Antonia Ramos Muniz ( Ingenious Architecture )
Raven DeVaughn ( Olive Harvey College )
Andrea Hebard
Darienne Deans ( RDH Building Science )
Ellen Whitehead ( Morgante-Wilson Architects, LTD. )
Leslie Williams ( intetek psi )
Alicia Blakely ( Morgante-Wilson Architects, LTD. )
Valerie Vlahos Maes ( FLEXCO )
Amy Montgomery ( RDH Building Science )
Janette Scott ( Gensler )
Robin Rieck ( Norcon, Inc. )
Kristin Markovich ( BOS )
Lorrin Kline ( Student - University of Cincinnati )
Aubree Akers ( HBK Engineering, LLC )
Elisabeth Stump ( HBK Engineering, LLC )
Jennifer Trapane ( Henry Company )
Faezeh Ashtiani ( Design Workshop )
Sara Egan ( Design Workshop )
Jeannette Ray ( Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates Inc. )
Nene Sanankoua ( Thornton Tomasetti )
Rachel Jackson ( Thornton Tomasetti, Inc. )
Indira Oraziman ( Thornton Tomasetti )
Elizabeth Cassin ( Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates )
Robin Rieck ( Norcon, Inc. )
Heidi Granke ( Heritage Architecture Studio, LLC )
Jienan Zhang ( Sowlat Structural Engineers )
Casey Royer ( Thornton Tomasetti )
Meg Kindelin ( JLK Architects )
Cristina Gallo ( Via Chica )
Jennifer Deem ( Forefront Structural Engineers )
Amanda Featherstone ( Forefront Structural Engineers )
Zelina Johnson ( Klein and Hoffman, Inc. )
Nancy Collins ( )
Oana Toma ( Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates, Inc. )
Yasmin Chaudhry ( Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates, Inc. )
Stephanie Crain ( SEAOI )
Bethany Myelle ( Magnusson KIemencic Associates )
Samuel Filisko ( TRC Solutions )
Iglika Georgieva ( Ware Malcomb )
Robin Owens ( McKissack & McKissack )
Sara Beardsley ( Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture )
Hi-Sun Choi ( Thornton Tomasetti )
Pamela Hutter ( Hutter Architects, Ltd. )
Tess Massaroni ( Mortenson Construction )
Jennifer Keegan ( Intertek )
April Hughes ( HPZS Architects )
Agnieszka Szpara ( Wright Heerema Architects )
Jill McCall ( MCA )
Erika Green ( Walker Consultants )
Grace Duchaj ( Walker Consultants )
Saranthip Koh ( Skidmore, Owings & Merrill )
Merve Usta ( Skidmore, Owings & Merrill )
Dixey Arterburn ( Skidmore, Owings, & Merrill )
Joan Crowe ( GAF )
Kristi Selden ( Wiss, Janney, Elstner Assoc. )
Veronika Billiot ( TGRWA )
Carol McLaughin ( MLS Studio )
Megan Wade ( Fieldwork Design Group )
Elizabeth Mullin ( WJE )
Araceli Garza-Perez ( Studio ARQ, LLC )
Kristin Scholten ( Pella Windows and Doors )
Jingyun Sun ( Ciorba Group, Inc. )
Karina Cisneros ( Ciorba Group, Inc )
Mary Sturgeon ( HKS Architects, Inc. )
Tara Toren-Rudisill ( Thornton Tomasetti )
Kathleen Strnad ( Klein and Hoffman, Inc. )
Cathleen Jacinto ( SE Solutions, LLC )
Lisa Patel ( American Institute of Steel Construction )
Noelle Kwak ( Wright Heerema Architects )
Angela Harper ( Gensler )
Marie Daboub ( Ciorba Group )
Michelle Ryland ( Klein & Hoffman )
lina chiu ( Gensler )
Kremena Dokliev ( Illinois Institute of Technology )
Suzanne Pennasilico ( Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, LLP )
Kristen Erickson ( Pepper Construction )
Belinda OKelly ( OKelly Kasprak )
Gabriela Taylor ( Sierra Pacific Windows )
Monica Cutrone ( The Society of Women Engineers )
Christine Strom ( Northwestern Memorial Healthcare )
Cathy Huang ( Gilsanz Murray Steficek LLP Engineers and Architects )
Kristi Miro ( Gilsanz Murray Steficek LLP Engineers and Architects )
Christine Freisinger ( Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates, Inc. (Chicago) )
Amanda Mann ( Kohler )
Mimi Troy ( Troy Architects )
Elisabeth Logman ( Henry Frerk Sons )
Natalie Hicks ( Wright Heerema Architects )
Monika Miller ( RS&H )
Elizabeth Ortner ( Studio 31a )
Suzi Reinhold ( Revive Architecture )
Cierine Nicolas ( Arup )
Jennifer Traut-Todaro ( AISC - American Institute of Steel Construction )
Amy Lamb Woods ( International Masonry Institute )
Jennifer Pazdon ( Cast Connex )
Felicia Davis ( Interim President, Olive-Harvey College )
Rebecca Reising ( Simpson Gumpertz & Heger )
Tori Chang ( Simpson Gumpertz & Heger )
Elizabeth Bales ( Simpson Gumpertz & Heger )
Chris Ann Spencer ( Wheeler Kearns Architects )
Lauren Terzick ( Bulley & Andrews LLC )
Rachel Oleinick ( Northworks Architects )
Jen Chaplin ( Bulley & Andrews )
Rachel Michelin ( Thornton Tomasetti )
Kristen Navaid ( Walker Consultants )
Heather Gleason ( BKV Group )
Meaghan O'Meara ( BKV Group )
Stephanie Hautzinger ( CannonDesign )
Farah Piatek
Mimi Troy ( Troy Architects LLC )