2020 Women Who Build Spotlight: Cheryl Newton, Cheryl Newton Architects LLC

February 21, 2020 - Connecticut

Cheryl Newton, AIA, Principal at Cheryl Newton Architects LLC

How many years have you been in your current field? 28 years

What motivated you to step out on your own? My dad. He worked in a job he hated to generously provide for our family and have the money to do the things he wanted to do when he wasn’t working. My dad told my brother and I to choose a career where I can be my own boss.

What project, transaction, honor or accomplishment are you most proud of? My favorite job was the Hartford Hospital Education Space Improvements. I was 26 years old and it was my first opportunity to do everything on a project. I learned a valuable lesson while presenting to the building committee when someone asked a technical question that I didn’t know the answer to. I answered, “I don’t know the answer to that question, but. I will get you an answer by the end of the day.” Architects are trained to “know everything”, and one of the most difficult skills to learn is how to become aware when you don’t know something. 

What is the best leadership advice you have ever received? Who was it from? I’ve had the good fortune of working for architects who led by example. 

• Mary Jo Olenick, AIA taught me how to be a strong leader and marketing champion.

• Dan Weston, AIA taught me how to manage people by giving them freedom to do their own work and being available to support them at all times. 

• Ray Giolitto, AIA taught me how to always get paid on time.

If your life were made into a movie, what actor would you want to portray you and why? Amy Pohler, I’m really funny, talented and sincere. Incorporating humor into all aspects of my life energizes me and brings joy to the people I care about – family, friends, colleagues, and of course, . . . clients!

What are you planning to do differently in 2020 to have a positive impact on your career? Increase networking activity from 2X a month to 2X a week.



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