2021 Women in Construction: Amy Oreto, Estimator, Windover Construction

March 26, 2021 - Spotlights

What steps have you taken to ensure the continued success of your firm? I am helping my team members when I can so that we are all successful, and they do the same for me. With so much going on, it is easy to get overwhelmed but I’m making sure to let them know I am available to help. Windover has been focused on diversifying our markets and so our estimating team has been extremely busy pursuing new opportunities, and we wouldn’t have been able to meet deadlines without that teamwork and flexibility.

What was your greatest professional achievement or most notable project in the last 12 months? Windover recently completed a life science lab fitout project, and as the Estimator it was both challenging and rewarding for me. The project was complex in part because the end users were multiple user groups each with different requirements for their lab space. We were able to become a trusted advisor to the client and provide innovative solutions to meet their needs through our Virtual Design & Construction services. This allowed us to share valuable information that helped guide the design and ensured quality throughout the project. In the end, we were able to deliver this new space to a very satisfied client.

What are you most looking forward to post-pandemic? I am looking forward to getting back on the jobsites and connecting with people in person. At Windover, we are all about building great things with great people and the best relationships are formed when you can get to know someone face-to-face so I’m looking forward to walking the sites and discussing the job with trade partners again. I’m also excited for things to get back to normal and not have to juggle being a teacher while working full-time!

How have you adapted and changed in the last 12 months? I’ve learned that working from home is a challenge. Juggling everything going on – dogs barking, kids remote learning, and other distractions a busy household brings – while remaining professional with clients, trade partners, and team members hasn’t been easy. However, taking “brain breaks” throughout the day to get quick chores done around the house has allowed me to be more productive when I am working, and more focused on family when I’m not. It’s also been comforting to know I’m not alone and to see others facing these challenges too, because you often don’t see that in the office or on site.

Why should women consider a career in construction? Construction is a very rewarding career. With technology and construction methods constantly evolving, the industry is ever-changing. There is always something new to learn and master. Also, following a project from conception to completion is an amazing process, and seeing the client using their new space is very gratifying. I still notice there are limited women in technical roles in construction, and while I would like to see more women choose this as a career path, it is currently a differentiator for those of us that choose this path and helps us stand out.  

Starting out in the construction business, who or what empowered you? My ninth grade AutoCAD teacher was my driving force to pursue a career in construction. I had always loved drawing and technology and getting into AutoCAD made me love construction. When I was in tenth grade, I won a design contest for a footbridge, and it was so gratifying. Seeing my bridge lowered onto the foundation and cutting the ribbon to open it sealed the deal for me to continue in construction. It just got better from there.

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