By: Elizabeth Leake Issue: Rebuilding Our Infrastructure Section: Community
Both In Business and In Life
The Colorado Women's Chamber Annual Awards Luncheon celebrates the accomplishments of outstanding women and businesses in Colorado. The awards presented are Lifetime Achievement, Young Professional, and Sustainable, Small, Medium and Large Businesses of the year. The Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes the efforts of a woman who has demonstrated significant leadership and has made an impact on women in her community. The Young Professional Award recognizes the efforts of an outstanding Colorado young professional woman who demonstrates significant accomplishments in her career and has contributed to the business community. The Company of the Year Awards honor small, medium, and large companies that create a workplace culture that supports the highest levels of personal and professional accomplishment for their women employees by encouraging them to excel in the company, devote time and energy to their community in a meaningful way, and forge paths of leadership for other women to follow. The Sustainable Company Award honors a company that creates a workplace culture that supports the environment, the economy, and society.
Large, Medium and Small Companies of the Year Award Finalists
DatamanUSA is a small, local, privately-held, for-profit business with a history of Best Business practices. It is100 percent woman-owned by Nidhi Saxena, who is the founder and CEO, and who mentors female employees to help them achieve the same level of excellence as she has. DatamanUSA believes in providing effective and efficient technology solutions through best talents, along with a sense of commitment, value and integrity for 100 percent customer satisfaction. They assist their women workforce with high energy and focus making them purposeful people and committed activists—who make it happen. DatamanUSA has training, retraining and mentoring programs. DatamanUSA has a mature subcontracting program that helps identify, qualify and leverage services. There are over 50 women-owned IT consulting and staff augmentation companies that are in the DatamanUSA’s subcontractors program.
Entitlement and Engineering Solutions, Inc.
Entitlement and Engineering Solutions, Inc. (EES) fosters a work culture that encourages all employees, not just women, to provide their best work. EES is a small woman-owned civil engineering company that employs a majority of women for their staff. EES has cultivated a workplace environment that supports women in their career pursuits while acknowledging the demands on their personal lives. The female majority at EES encourages a comfortable, supportive, non-competitive atmosphere to allow each employee to strive for excellence. Women’s unique traits are valued as one of EES’ strengths, and EES employees are encouraged to cultivate those unique traits along with their professional skills to climb to leadership positions within the company, on projects, and within the community. By allowing flexible schedules, alternative work weeks and telecommuting, EES keeps talented and successful women engaged and employed within their field. By embracing these alternative work options, EES highlights women’s contributions to the industry and secures a consistent place for women in the profession.
Hensel Phelps Construction Co.
Hensel Phelps Construction Co. (Hensel Phelps) established the Women’s Network (WNet) to create an environment that encourages women to pursue excellence within the company. It was established as a forum for mentorship and leadership development for women in construction within the organization. The WNet has working groups established in each of Hensel Phelps’ seven district offices, having been established in Colorado at the corporate headquarters in Greeley, Colorado. Hensel Phelps contracts for all types of goods and services from women-owned companies involved in all aspects of the construction and related industries. From design and engineering, to supply and installation of construction products and services, to inspection and commissioning of projects, Hensel Phelps has been recognized in the Colorado community as a leader in the advocacy and advancement of women-owned businesses.
Holland & Hart
At Holland & Hart, women are encouraged to take an active leadership role within the firm. In the last 20 years, three women have acted as the managing partner or chair of Holland & Hart’s management committee. In addition, the firm’s activities committee, audit letter committee, federal political action committee, lease committee and wellness advisory committee are all currently chaired by women. Women attorneys are also included as voting members of other influential firm committees. Holland & Hart was one of only 32 firms in the country recognized by the Women in Law Empowerment Forum (WILEF) through its new Gold Standard Certification Awards Initiative. It is the only initiative directed toward certifying, publicly recognizing, and broadly publicizing eligible law firms that have integrated women into the highest leadership positions in the firm.
Diversity at Raytheon is about inclusiveness—providing an atmosphere where everyone feels valued and empowered to perform at a peak level regardless of the many ways people are different, including but not limited to age, race, gender, sexual orientation, family history or physical ability. One of the ways Raytheon promotes inclusiveness is Raytheon Women’s Network (RWN). RWN provides employees with various opportunities to facilitate their career development, enhance their leadership skills, and increase their exposure to leaders. Additionally, RWN's community outreach and science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) programs establish Raytheon's brand within their community. RWN is an employee resource dedicated to serving as a strategic business partner in building and maintaining a diverse and inclusive workforce. RWN is committed to increasing the visibility and contributions of Raytheon women, thereby enhancing the company's ability to become an employer of choice for women.
Sherman & Howard
Sherman & Howard recognizes that diversity is critical to the success of the firm and their clients. In 2008, they developed an inclusiveness council made up of lawyers and other firm professionals who work to ensure that inclusiveness is a core value throughout the firm and remains a core principal in recruiting, retention and promotion practices. Through these initiatives, Sherman & Howard seeks to develop and maintain a partnership and workplace that is inclusive for all lawyers and staff including people regardless of their race, gender, age, religion, sexual orientation, disability, or national or ethnic origin. Sherman & Howard demonstrates its commitment to diversity and inclusiveness by placing women in leadership roles throughout the firm. Over 90 percent of the positions listed under professional leadership opportunities have been filled by women within the firm who have demonstrated outstanding efforts and were awarded the position based on performance and demonstrated capability in their respective fields.
Work Options for Women
The mission of Work Options for Women (WOW) is to help impoverished women gain the skills and confidence they need to work their way out of poverty and become gainfully and permanently employed in the food service industry. WOW trains and hires women in poverty situations into the food service industry and assists them with life-changing opportunities by helping them address transportation, housing and childcare needs in order to teach them job responsibility and commitment to the training program. Their success rate with moving participants out of poverty and into self-sustaining employment situations is over 80 percent. With a staunch focus on moving women in need into a self-sustainable employment situation by teaching them much-needed skills in an industry, WOW will succeed in putting women to work in the community with an opportunity for advancement.
Sustainable Company of the Year Award Finalists
Goodwill Industries of Denver
The mission of Goodwill Industries of Denver (Goodwill) is to create opportunities for individuals to change their lives and the lives of others while building a strong and sustainable community. Goodwill is a solution to reducing waste, a thriving nonprofit serving the needs of many in our community and ultimately, a socially responsible discount retailer. Each year, Goodwill diverts more than 55 million pounds of waste from landfills including used computer equipment through a partnership with Dell computers. More than one million donors and two million shoppers helped turn one person’s trash into someone else’s treasure by donating, reusing and repurposing goods. Goodwill ensures that more than 30,000 individuals in the community have the opportunity to change their lives and the lives of others while building a strong, sustainable community. Revenue from stores provides career development and skills training for at-risk youth, struggling families, and individuals with disabilities.
At ReDirect Guide, everything they do is in an effort to make living green simple and accessible. ReDirect Guide's resources, events, initiatives and projects are intended to provide pragmatic and easy-to-use tools to help everyone make green choices in their everyday purchases. They believe that by finding, qualifying, and presenting green businesses in easy-to-use formats, they are helping individuals contribute to a better world with every dollar they spend. Their products and services are designed to promote businesses that incorporate environmental and social responsibility, to strengthen community, to provide educational resources, and perhaps most importantly, to make it easy for consumers to find healthy and sustainable products and services in their area. As their name implies, they redirect consumer support to sustainable companies by providing an easy to use guide to green businesses and local resources.
Xcel Energy consistently meets its business goals and honors its commitments to customers, employees and the environment; the company proves that it is built to last. That was certainly true in 2010, an outstanding year in every category. They met their financial goals, maintained outstanding customer service, demonstrated environmental leadership, and achieved operational excellence. Xcel Energy’s list of environmental accomplishments is long—from their portfolio of renewable energy sources to their emissions-reduction efforts to their investments in promising new technology. All of those initiatives got them closer to a clean energy future. As Xcel moves in that direction, they balance their environmental responsibilities with their obligation to customers to deliver reliable energy at a competitive price. They want consumers to be aware of the fact that their balanced resource strategy, which includes a mix of energy sources, will continue to keep costs reasonable.