July/August 2015
In this issue...
President's Column
It's Scholarship Season!
Corporate Partner Spotlight
Become a 2016 Corporate Partner
Recap: August Program
Recap: July Program
TYOU Update
Members on the Move
New Members
WTS Minnesota welcomes the following new and returning members:

Leila Bunge

Jennifer Cooper
University of Minnesota

Michelle Fure
Metropolitan Council

Gayle Gartner
Metro Transit

Morgan Hoxsie

Theresa Maahs

Nicole Peterson
HR Green

Lacy Shelby
City of Minneapolis
Save the Dates for Upcoming Programs!

Book Club: 'Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World that Can't Stop Talking'


St. Paul - Hosted by Kathy Lantry, St. Paul Public Works Director

Friday, Sept. 18th

11:30 AM - 1:00 PM

George Latimer Central Library


Minneapolis - Hosted by Lisa Bender, Minneapolis City Council

Wednesday, Sept. 23rd

7:30 AM - 9:00 AM

Wedge Table


Visit our Events page for more information including registration.

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 Laura Eash.

 Corporate Partners   


Thank you to our 2015 corporate partners: 






Kimley-Horn & Associates, Inc.



 HDR, Inc.





Bolton & Menk, Inc.


Braun Intertec


HR Green


SRF Consulting


SEH, Inc.


Parsons Brinckerhoff


WSB & Associates, Inc.


Pierce Pini & Associates, Inc.


Professional Engineering Services, Ltd.


Rani Engineering




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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Has your email address changed?

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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2015 WTS Minnesota
Board of Directors

Vice President

Kelly Agosto
Past President

  Scholarships & Recognitions Director
 Lyssa Leitner

 Programs Co-Director
 Chelsey Armstrong
Programs Co-Director

 Membership Director
Kathleen Mayell

 Marketing Director
Laura Eash

 Transportation YOU Director


Development Director

Special Events Director
2015 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

Olsson Associates

Dawn Spanhake

Center for Transportation Studies

Amy Vennewitz

Metropolitan Council

Charleen Zimmer

Zan Associates
President's Column
Dear WTS Members and Friends,
Often when I'm out in the world, I'm engrossed by the people I'm with, the activity I'm participating in or the thoughts in my head. I know this because sometimes I notice something for the first time that I know I must encounter on a regular basis. Other times, I think twice about the decisions we make...and write long columns. 

A few weeks ago, my husband and I spent a beautiful evening at Target Field. We were still basking in the glow of the seven-run bottom of the ninth (including a three-run walk-off homer) on the Green Line train home. The glow was dimmed slightly by each rowdy, intoxicated group boarding at the downtown stops, until my attention was drawn away by a stark contrast. Quietly wedged among the unaware were a couple of young men who, despite their sight impairments, seemed the most conscious of their surroundings. They had just seen Weezer at the Basilica Block Party and my husband had noted the awesomeness of one's Blue Album t-shirt. 

These guys were unassuming. They were recounting the concert in a corner by the door, content with their ride home. The more I observed them and thought about their evening, the more questions I had, including: 
  • How did they know where to go when they arrived at the temporary outdoor venue? How did they get through the crowd? Is it easier when people are packed shoulder-to-shoulder? 
  • How would they know when to get off the train? The station announcements were inconsistent and not always audible.
  • Since they were standing near the door, how did they know which way to move to allow people to pass? They seemed to be having less trouble than I normally did. 
  • How did they find things to hang on to? Again, I seemed to have more trouble than they did.
  • As one couple was preparing to get off the train, they offered their seats to the guys. Would both guys discover the step up, the ramp and then the other step up to get to the seats, and would it be more difficult while the train was accelerating? Also, how would they know there was a half wall + Plexiglas between the seats and them?
Most interesting to me was why they didn't seem frustrated. Have they been conditioned to accept these inconveniences and be content they have a ride? Are we doing everything we can (within cost and feasibility constraints)? Are we fulfilling our responsibilities to all or just the vocal and entitled? 

This month, WTS Minnesota hosted an accessibility program, where participants were reminded that it's not about checking off boxes, but about doing what's right. The program raised our awareness and forced us to focus on the experience of others for a while.

As the Minnesota State Fair season approaches (of COURSE I worked the state fair into this column!), I encourage us all to look deeper in our people-watching and put our observations to good use. 

Happy fair-going and safe returns to school,

HunWen Westman
President, WTS Minnesota
It's Scholarship Season! 
WTS is focused on transforming the transportation industry through the advancement of women. One way we try to achieve that is through annual scholarships. The WTS MN scholarship process will take place September 1st - October 16th. We offer three scholarships for graduate and undergraduate students with at least a 3.0 GPA, and they either have to be a MN resident or enrolled in a MN school. Start spreading the word to your interns, networks, and family friends! More information will be posted on the WTS MN website by September 1st. 
Corporate Partner Spotlight

WTS Minnesota would like to thank our 2015 Small Business Supporter level (DBE) partners: Pierce Pini & Associates, Inc.; Professional Engineering Services; Rani Engineering; and Stonebrooke. All of our Small Business Supporters are women-owned firms which embody the WTS Minnesota mission of transforming the transportation industry through the advancement of women. With their help, WTS Minnesota hopes to inspire the next generation of women-owned transportation firms here in the Twin Cities.



Become a 2016 Corporate Partner 
Why partner with WTS?
The WTS Minnesota Chapter's mission is to transform the transportation industry through the advancement of women. With your help, we provide access to unique opportunities, which include:
* Access Leaders in the local transportation field with intimate, members-only programs.
* Professional Development with fun and relevant topics at our local programs and unique opportunities like attending the WTS National Conference.
* Inspiring a New Generation of Women by connecting with local girls through our TransportationYOU program to introduce them to the transportation industry.
* Support Tomorrow's Leaders by providing scholarships to graduate and undergraduate female students pursuing transportation-related fields.

What Benefits are offered to Corporate Partners?
With three great levels, Small Business Supporter (DBE), Supporter, and Advocate, there are options for every commitment level. By becoming a partner you will take an active part in helping spread the WTS Minnesota mission. Visit the WTS Minnesota webpage for details.

How do I become a Corporate Partner?
Contact Morgan Abbott to participate in the 2016 Corporate Partnership Program.
Recap: August Program

The August 13th program was hosted by SRF Consulting in St. Paul. We had 26 people in attendance to hear from Kristin Jornby (Olmstead Implementation Office) and Tara McBride (MnDOT) on accessibility. Kristin provided background and information on the Olmstead Plan, explaining the legal requirements of the plan and its requirements for transportation. Tara then discussed what MnDOT has been doing on the system to address accessibility and what designers need to know to meet the requirements. Several of the attendees then went on an accessibility walking tour to Surly Brewery for happy hour.

Recap: July Program
On July 22nd approximately 60 people participated in the St Croix River Crossing Boat Tour. The weather was perfect! Information was shared on the boat during the entire tour by MnDOT's Todd Clarkowski & Terry Zoller. Todd primarily spoke about the history of the Stillwater Lift Bridge and the area. Terry provided lots of details about the construction details, materials and methods of construction for the new crossing. After the tour we went to happy hour at the Freight House in Stillwater - where we had a tremendous turnout of over 40 people.

Visit WTS MN on Facebook for more photos.

TYOU Update

Have you been thinking about a way to get involved with WTS, specifically the TYOU program? Now is your opportunity! We are starting the planning process for this year's TYOU program at Blaine High School and we need your help! We are looking for WTS members that are interested in being on the TYOU committee (helping develop this year's TYOU program) and we are also looking for mentors! Please contact Lisa Rasmussen if you are interested in becoming part of the TYOU team!


Congratulations to Kristina Nesse, who passed the AICP exam and is now a certified planner!


Congratulations to HunWen Westman, who now works at the City of St. Paul in Public Works!


WTS MN Past President Molly Stewart and her husband Chris welcomed a baby boy, Oscar Thomas Sapp, on June 25th! Congrats to Molly also for now being certified as a Professional Traffic Operations Engineer!





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