NWiR Member Spotlight – Meet Ray July

How did you get into the roofing industry?

I was a stay-at-home mom who needed to get back out to work so while working at a temporary job I hated I applied to work at Chinook. Once I was hired, this job was supposed to be a stepping stone to my dream job but 5 years and counting later; I’ve made this my career.

Why are you a member of NWIR?

I believe in the pillars of the organization and I think it’s a great way for women in this male-dominated industry to come together and make a difference in the status quo.

What is your passion and how does it inspire your work?

My family is my passion. That inspires me because growing up I had strong female influences in my life and I’d like the same for my children. I want my daughter to see that her mother is able to work in a male-dominated industry and be successful.

What do you do for fun?

I spend time with my family. We travel, go camping, attend random festivals and enjoy the outdoors.

What is something people might not know about you?

I was born in South America and grew up in Barbados.

What advice would you give to other women considering a career in roofing?

Don’t be intimidated and when someone tells you you can’t do something, let that be all the motivation you need to prove them wrong. The roofing industry is growing and your seat at the table awaits you.

What is the best piece of advice you have ever received in your career or your life?

Listen twice as much as you talk.

What do you consider your greatest accomplishment?

My kids! I know it’s mushy but I always joke and say it’s the one thing I haven’t managed to screw up. They are my pride and joy and knowing that I get the opportunity to impart my knowledge and raise two humans who will have an impact on this world makes me feel pretty great.

Tell me more about your involvement with NWiR?

Currently, I’m the membership chair for the Seattle Chapter of NWiR.

How can women get more involved with NWiR, where should they start?

I would start by going to the NWiR website to locate your local council and if there isn’t one you have to option to start a council and all the tools to do so is available on the website.

Tell me more about your journey of getting into roofing?

Most people in the roofing industry have the same story of origin, we fell into it. I started with Chinook Roofing & Gutters 5+ years ago as an entry-level employee. I have recently been promoted to the business development of our new construction steep slope department and it is something I’ve wanted for a long time. I remember at my 1-year review I asked the owner of our company, John Patterson, for opportunities and since then I have consistently been offered opportunities for advancement. I have a great support system here at our company and I feel truly blessed to be able to work for a company that supports the growth and development of the employees.

What do you want women to know?

I want women to know that times are changing and while there may still be some areas where growth and maturity is needed, as a woman in a male-dominated industry I refuse to allow the status quo to affect my ability to progress. Glass ceilings are meant to be broken.

What’s your favorite story about being a woman in roofing?

I don’t have one specific story, but I will say that it’s truly inspiring watching a group of women come together and make something happen that they were previously told they couldn’t do.

Click here if you want to share your story with other NWiR members!

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