November/December 2014
In this issue...
President's Column
Corporate Partner Spotlight: AECOM
Corporate Partner Spotlight: HDR
WTS Chapter Leadership Training
November Program Recap: Innovative Asset Management
Holiday Party a Success
Members on the Move

New Members


WTS Minnesota welcomes the following new and returning members:


Chelsey Palmateer

University of Minnesota


Nicole Behnke

Alliant Engineering


Sofia Puerto

Michael Baker International


Becky Alper

Jefferson Lines


Mark Benson



Kristin Carlson

University of Minnesota


Jungru Gao

University of Minnesota


Megan Nutzmann

Rani Engineering


Abigail Tutewohl

Alliant Engineering


Amanda Spradling

University of Minnesota


Anna Potter

University of Minnesota


Next Program Announcement Coming Soon!
We're already looking forward to kicking off our programs in 2015 with great opportunities for learning and networking. Keep an eye out for more details to come, or check our Events page.


Job Postings
WTS Minnesota posts job and internship opportunities on our website. Visit our Employment Opportunities page to view all current postings.  
 Help us spread the word about available positions by sending new posting information to Bre Grand.






Corporate Partners   


Thank you to our 2014 corporate partners: 





Kimley-Horn & Associates, Inc.  


HR Green Logo    

HR Green




 HDR, Inc.


URS Corp.







Bolton & Menk, Inc.


SRF Consulting


SEH, Inc.


Parsons Brinckerhoff


WSB & Associates, Inc.


J&L Steel & Electrical Services


Professional Engineering Services, Ltd.


See your name here, and support the advancement of women in transportation! For more information about becoming a corporate partner, visit our website.  

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Please email Kathleen Mayell with your new address and don't forget to update your email address with WTS International as well.
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2014 WTS Minnesota
Board of Directors

Molly Stewart

Vice President
HunWen Westman

Chelsey Armstrong

Morgan Abbott
Past President
  Scholarships & Recognitions Director
 Sara Pflaum

 Programs Co-Director
 Rose Ryan
Programs Co-Director

 Membership Director
Kathleen Mayell

 Marketing Director
 Bre Grand

 Transportation YOU Director


Development Director
2014 WTS Minnesota
Advisory Board

Donna Allan
WTS Past President
Laura Amundson
Parsons Brinckerhoff 
Kristin Asher
City of Richfield
Gina Baas
Center for Transportation Studies

Debra Brisk
Hennepin County

Biz Colburn
WTS Past President

Sandy Cullen
University of Minnesota

Margaret Donahoe
Minnesota Transportation Alliance

Mary Gute


Judy Hollander

Hennepin County

Ann Johnson

P.E. Services
 Wanda Kirkpatrick
Metropolitan Council


Connie Kozlak
Metropolitan Council

Jessica Laabs

Kimley-Horn & Associates

Stephanie Malinoff

Center for Transportation Studies

Scott McBride
Laurie McGinnis
Center for Transportation Studies

Dan Meyers


Amber Nord
Isthmus Engineering

Lisa Raduenz

Past President

Dawn Spanhake

Center for Transportation Studies

Amy Vennewitz

Metropolitan Council

Charleen Zimmer

Zan Associates

President's Column


Season's greetings WTS!

It was so great to see so many of you at the WTS Holiday Party a few weeks ago. The party was a huge success with nearly 100 people in attendance who helped raise over $2,000 for our scholarships and educational programs. Thanks again to everyone who donated a silent auction item and thanks to all you generous bidders. If you have a minute, please check out the photos from the event in our photo gallery.

It's hard to believe we have approached the end of 2014 which means the end of my term as President. The past year has been such a great year to serve as Chapter President, and I'd like to highlight some of our successes in 2014:

  • We delivered eleven multimodal and interdisciplinary programs, including a behind-the-scenes airport tour at the Minneapolis-St Paul Airport, an inside tour of the newly opened Metro Green Line and an insightful discussion on transportation funding.  We had record setting attendance at our annual Scholarships and Recognitions luncheon in April, and raised over $2,000 for scholarships in June at a joint fundraising event with NC-ITE and ITS MN at the Summit Brewery.
  • Our chapter board completed a financial planning exercise which established a comprehensive financial plan and a decision-making process for spending that are in line with our strategic plan and goals.
  • Our Transportation YOU mentorship program continues to grow and is in its third year at Blaine High School. In June we once again sent a mentor-mentee pair to the Transportation YOU Summit in DC, thanks to support from our corporate partners.

WTS Minnesota has had many accomplishments in the past year which could not have been possible without the dedication of the many volunteers who gave their time. I would especially like to thank the 2014 Chapter Board. This is a dedicated and energetic group of women who have worked hard this past year to support the WTS Minnesota mission of transforming the Minnesota transportation industry through the advancement of women. It has been a pleasure to serve as your Chapter President in 2014 and I look forward to seeing many of you at programs and networking opportunities in 2015!

Best wishes, 


Molly Stewart

President, WTS Minnesota



Corporate Partner Spotlight: AECOM


WTS Minnesota would like to thank AECOM for being a 2014 Advocate-Level Partner. Giving at WTS MN's highest partnership level, AECOM has contributed to the success of WTS programs, scholarships, and educational opportunities in 2014. Please take a minute to learn more about AECOM in Minnesota and why they support WTS MN.




MN Office Locations: Minneapolis

Transportation Services Offered: AECOM offers services in planning, design, construction and more for transportation services including aviation, transit/freight/rail, ports and marine and highways and bridges.

Website: www.aecom.com

Why AECOM Supports WTS MN"AECOM shares WTS' vision for promoting lifelong careers in transportation for women, closing the workforce gap. We have been a supporter of WTS not only at the local level, but also the national level for many years. The programs offered by WTS MN such as book club, networking events, professional development sessions, and Transportation YOU, provide a conduit for our employees to connect with other transportation professionals, sharing ideas and thoughts that benefit the transportation industry as a whole. Personally, I have been a member of WTS since 2002 and owe much of my advancement in my career to the connections I have made through the programs offered by WTS." --Kim Proia, Senior Project Manager, Transit, AECOM



Corporate Partner Spotlight: HDR

WTS Minnesota would like to thank HDR, Inc. for being a 2014 Advocate-Level Partner. Giving at WTS MN's highest partnership level, HDR has contributed to the success of WTS programs, scholarships, and educational opportunities in 2014. Please take a minute to learn more about HDR in Minnesota and why they support WTS MN.  



MN Office Locations: Minneapolis, St. Paul, Rochester, Thief River Falls

Transportation Services Offered: Planning, roads, bridges, traffic, design-build, tunnels, transit, rail, value engineering and risk assessment/management, noise and vibration analyses, NEPA, etc. 

Website: www.hdrinc.com    

Why HDR Supports WTS MN: "HDR employs 8,500 people in more than 200 locations worldwide, of which 32% are women and 18% minorities. We believe strongly in WTS' mission." -- Matt Kocourek, Marketing Coordinator, HDR


2014 WTS Chapter Leadership Training


WTS Minnesota was fortunate to have a great showing this year at WTS' annual Chapter Leadership Training. HunWen Westman, Chelsey Armstrong, Rose Ryan, Kathleen Mayell, Lyssa Leitner and Amber Nord attended the several-day conference, held in San Diego on November 13-15. The WTS Minnesota representatives got a chance to meet and mingle with other chapter leaders at a waterfront reception, and spend several days gaining organization insight and having discussions through attending sessions such as:

  • Transportation YOU panel discussion
  • Updates on WTS International and WTS Foundation
  • Roundtable discussions with leaders from other chapters
  • The language of leadership
  • Chapter fundraising
  • Empowering chapter leaders
  • Central Region breakout session
  • "Ignite" sessions - fast paced 5 minute presentations on variety of topics from building a WTS chapter to the Paycheck Fairness Act

Chapter leaders also shared thoughts on the future of the organization as a whole and on local initiatives, such as various program and mentoring ideas, methods for enlisting volunteers and day-to-day business operations. 



November Program Recap: Innovative Asset Management


On Monday, November 17 WTS hosted Innovative Asset Management at MnDOT's Central Office. The program highlighted the work MnDOT has done as one of three pilot states in the nation to comply with MAP-21's Transportation Asset Management Plan requirement. Kirby Becker, Asset Management Planning Director, and Trisha Stefanski, Metro District Infrastructure Asset Management Engineer, shared how MnDOT has used that process to manage its assets in a more responsible and complete way. MnDOT manages the state highway network - 12,000 miles of roadways that have an estimated replacement value of nearly $30 billion for just the pavements alone. New lessons on how to better manage the system were shared, including data collection methodologies, inspection cycles, life cycle cost analyses, and how to manage an aging system with increased demands.


Kirby and Trisha gave an overview on how MnDOT addresses pavement, bridges, hydraulics (highway culverts and deep storm water tunnels), overhead sign structures, and tower lighting on the MnDOT highway system. A preview of the next assets to undergo a strategic asset management planning approach was given - noise walls, traffic signals, lighting, Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) infrastructure, and pedestrian infrastructure.


The program was followed by a happy hour at Red Cow in St Paul's historic Cathedral Hill.  

Successful Holiday Party Rounds Out a Great Year


Thank you to all who attended and contributed time and silent auction donations (and participated in our auction and raffle) to make WTS Minnesota's annual holiday party another success! It was a great evening of mingling and networking with close to 100 friends and members, and will further WTS Minnesota in our continued efforts to support our important educational programs and scholarships. Make sure to check out our party photo album on our website, in addition to the photos below. 







Congratulations to Nikki Farrington, who recently started a new position at SEH. Best wished to Nikki in her new role!


Congratulations to Morgan Abbott, who recently passed the PE exam!



Have member news to share? Send in snippets about job changes, life milestones, and other accomplishments to Bre Grand so we can keep track of and recognize our colleagues!