January 2017 Newsletter

A Letter from the Chair

Heidi J. Ellsworth, President, HJE Consulting Group & Current NWIR Chair

In January, I was asked to visit the Tennessee Association of Roofing Contractors (TARC).  It was a daylong conference with many speakers.  The fact that NWIR was invited to speak was great!  I met amazing men and women during the event.  And at the wrap-up reception, I was able to really get to know the amazing women of Tennessee.

I was very impressed with the association.  Michelle Boykin with Rackley Roofing Company, Inc. along with Curtis Sutton were instrumental in coordinating the NWIR visit.  Michelle is planning on starting a council in Tennessee. There were many women and men in attendance that were willing to help get a council started.  In fact, I believe they are planning on having the first Tennessee NWIR Council gathering at the 2017 TARC summer meeting.

Michelle asked many great questions.  What should the council focus on?  How do they get names of women who are interested?  How and when should they meet?  I thought I would take some time and share the answers for all of you who are thinking of starting a council.

What should the council focus on?
We recommend starting with our four pillars: Education, Mentoring, Networking and Recruiting.  But, every council is going to be different.  Start out with a networking program.  Get to know each other.  Whether it is meeting up with old friends, making new friends or both, the time spent with other women in the roofing industry is invaluable.  During this time, you can figure out what is important to the group.  Community service, recruitment, motivational speakers; it can be anything that fits the culture and interests of your group.

How and when should they meet?  What do we need to do to set-up a council?
That first gathering is the time to talk about meeting times and locations.  The great thing about NWIR councils is that the group does not need to worry about bylaws, bank accounts, government; all the tasks that normally need to happen with a new association.  That has all been handled by NWIR so you are free to start on projects and discussions that really are pertinent to your group.

How do we start and how do we get names of women who are interested?
Go to www.nationalwomeninroofing.com and click the council button.  You will download the Council Toolkit and it has all the information to get started.  Ellen Thorp, our executive director, will send you all the names of women in your area who have signed up for our newsletter, are members or have even just sent in an inquiry email.  You can email the ladies on the list and see who wants to get started.

What have other Councils done?
It has been amazing.  A group of Los Angeles ladies just re-roofed a women’s shelter.  The group from Colorado had a networking function and are on their way with new activities.  It is not what can we do but what can’t we do.  The sky is the limit.


Membership continues to grow with over 270 members.  Please join today for the low rate of $60 per year and help support the work of National Women in Roofing.  Interested people can sign up for membership here. Sign up now!


NWIR is excited about the significant presence we are going to have at IRE.  This section of our monthly newsletter will highlight what we are doing and where to find us.  We also look forward to seeing you there.  Professional development is an important part of building your career in roofing – and IRE is a great place to do that.

Register today to attend the 2017 International Roofing Expo® [IRE] for FREE. By attending, you can see, compare and learn about the newest products, best practices and innovations essential to your success.

Taking place March 1-3, 2017, at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas, you will find 1,300 booths of manufacturers and suppliers of all sizes displaying products, services and equipment for the roofing industry.

The educational conference program features 122 hours and 44 educational seminars addressing a myriad of up-to-date industry issues and trends through 8 tracks covering technical, workplace safety, leadership/management, green building, legal/HR, money matters, sales/service and general business.

Register using the link below to receive FREE Expo Only admission, which includes admission to the Expo on Wednesday-Friday and the Keynote by Retired Lt. Col. Rob “Waldo” Waldman [must register to attend] – a savings of $55!  Register now at https://www.compusystems.com/servlet/ar?evt_uid=786&PromoCode=BN37

Upcoming Events

Board of Directors Meeting

The NWIR Board of Directors will be meeting on Monday, February 27th from 10am – 6pm with a dutch treat dinner following.  Invitations and details will be sent separately to the Board. Members are welcome to sit in at the Board meetings, please contact Ellen Thorp, Executive Director at info@nationalwomeninroofing.com to be included in the invitation. Thank you to… Read More

Board of Directors & Member Outing

In future years, the Monday before IRE will always be “National Women in Roofing Day” at the IRE and will include a series of workshops focused on a variety of topics related to education, mentoring, networking, and recruiting new women professionals into the roofing industry.  Please make a mental note of this exciting day for… Read More

NRCA Roofpac Golf Tournament

Some NWIR members will be participating in the Roofpac Golf Tournament through their respective companies.  Look for our NWIR lapel pins there!

Community Service Day at IRE

Some NWIR members will be participating in the Community Service day at IRE.  There is still time to register to be part of this great event.  Attendees may register for this event at the same time they register to attend the show.

Networking & Mentoring Reception at IRE

We are excited to announce that Kaney O’Neill, President of O’Neill Contractors Inc. & National Veteran-Owned Business Association’s (NaVOBA) 2015 Woman Vetrepreneur of the Year, will be the 2017 Mentoring Reception guest speaker at the IRE.  Not only is she an inspiration to women all over the country, she is also a force to be reckoned… Read More

Call For Photos

We love collecting and featuring your photos and stories.  For the next couple months we’d like to focus on second (or greater) generation roofers – those who grew up in the roofing industry or were introduced to it by a family member.  Submit high res photos and stories to info@nationalwomeninroofing.com.