Natalie Christian, BUSSQ Apprentice Tradestart recipient

Women in the Queensland construction industry were honoured last Friday at the NAWIC Awards for Excellence.

Held at the Royal International Convention Centre in Brisbane, there were more than 500 audience members, including minister for housing and public works, Mick de Brenni.

NAWIC Queensland’s president, Jen Gillet, described the 11 winners as “worthy nominees who are all pushing buttons and boundaries and who are our industry’s next big game changers.”

Gillet recognised the importance for an event celebrating women in the industry such as this, saying the next generation, “our daughters and sons,” may need help realising construction as “a rewarding and exciting career choice”.

“We all know the construction industry culture needs a shift,” she said. “The past few years NAWIC Queensland has seen a change for the better but we need to maintain momentum because empowered women transform societies.”

Becky Paroz, a successful engineer, industry leading project manager, company director and global professional mentor was awarded the Lendlease Crystal Vision Award for Advancing the Interests of Women in the Construction Industry.

She is a director in three companies and a global professional mentor.

“Having spent almost 30 years in the construction industry, Paroz demonstrated her unique leadership abilities on some of the most demanding projects in the public and private sectors,” the judges said.

Rachael Turner was the recipient of the ADCO Constructions Award for Achievement as a Businesswoman. She is the owner and director of residential construction company Front Porch Properties, which delivers renovations and new builds that “feel good to live in and hold their appeal and value over time,” according to the judges.

“She is passionate about investing time and care into her highly valued team of carpenters, developing their strengths and professional interest areas,” the judges said.

The BUSSQ Award to a Young Achiever was given to Emily Wyatt, who is in her third of the Multiplex graduate program.

Wyatt, who is currently overseeing project planning, programming and service coordination of the internal finishes at 300 George Street in Brisbane, was recognised for “already [demonstrating] impressive leadership and management skills”.

The BUSSQ Apprentice Tradestart Award, presented for the first time this year, was established for this reason: to help an apprentice who would not receive the normal range of funding achieve success.

Designed in conjunction with NAWIC and the Women on Tools committee, the inaugural Tradestart to assist an apprentice with a trade, was awarded to Natalie Christian.

Christian owns a small plumbing business with her partner, and because of this role in the business she was not eligible for any financial support.

However, the Tradestart award will contribute $1500 to put towards her studies, a $500 voucher to purchase tools and a NAWIC mentor, among other things, allowing her to complete the apprenticeship without greater financial risk to her or her family, including three boys under the age of 14.

Complete list of 2019 NAWIC Queensland Awards for Excellence winners:

John Holland Award for Innovation
Helen Renton, John Holland

Probuild Award for Achievement in Design

Stacy Curtis, Jacobs

Corrs Chambers Westgarth Award for Diversity

Together as One Flexibility and Inclusion Program, Hastings Deering

Dial Before You Dig Award for Achievement in Construction (Civil Works)
Ivette Nino, Pensar

Bluescope Award for Achievement in Construction (General/Building)
Caitlin Smith, Multiplex, 300 George Street Project

Construction Skills Queensland Award for Achievement by a Tradesperson
Bec Fisher, Servcore, and Erin Richardson, Hutchinson Builders

ADCO Constructions – Award for Achievement as a Businesswoman
Rachael Turner, Front Porch Properties

MULTIPLEX Building Super Award for Achievement in Health, Safety and/or Environment
Laure Arias, Pensar

BUSSQ Award to a Young Achiever
Emily Wyatt, Multiplex

Lendlease Crystal Vision Award
Becky Paroz, Queen B Project Systems

The BUSSQ Apprentice Tradestart Program
Natalie Christian

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