Beverly Willis Architecture Foundation honours HOK for leadership in advancing careers of women in the building industry

HOK will receive the Foundation Award at the Beverly Willis Architecture Foundation’s inaugural Leadership Awards Gala on Thursday, Feb. 26, 2015, in New York City. The award recognizes HOK’s leadership in expanding opportunities for and influencing the careers of women across the firm.

HOK’s ongoing commitment to mentoring and promoting women leaders has resulted in an increase in the number of woman officers at every level. Since 2011, the percentage of professional women staff grew from less than 38 percent to 45 percent and women now hold key leadership positions in several HOK regional offices, business groups and firm-wide departments.

Rebecca Nolan, IIDA, Assoc. AIA, LEED AP, who was named to the firm’s executive committee in 2014 and serves as managing principal for the Chicago and St. Louis offices, said:

“HOK understands the value of promoting and retaining women in leadership positions. Tracking and analyzing our progress helps us implement positive strategies for helping all of our professionals navigate and reach critical career milestones.”

HOK President Bill Hellmuth, AIA, LEEP AP said:

“We are deeply honored to be recognized for our progress in promoting women leaders in the year of our 60th anniversary as a firm. When we hire the most talented people around the world, diversity is a natural outcome that improves our work for clients.”

HOK’s Diversity Advisory Council promotes opportunities for diversity across the firm. Made up of nine women and five men, the council was founded on the ideas of inclusion for all, fairness in opportunity, respect for one another and integration within a diverse global practice. The council’s initiatives include participating in robust public support of diversity within HOK and the industry; engaging in research initiatives with the AIA and other organisations; guiding mentorship programs in local offices; and conducting a firm-wide survey to better understand employee perceptions of fairness, opportunity for recognition, work-life balance, advancement potential and access to leadership.