Women in the Glass Industry
It’s amazing how much you can learn about a person when you take the time to listen to what they have to say. Where do they work? What do they do? Hobbies? Best Experiences? Worst? I can tell you from experience, I had the best time reading all of the nominations we received for the USGlass feature on women in the industry, which you can read in the October issue. These women are serious rock stars (or I guess we should say glass stars), if you ask me. They’re leading companies, developing new business, creating, thinking, engineering … you name it. They’re all unique and they all impressed me.
These women were all relatable on certain levels. I think it’s because we’re all working in this industry of mostly men. While that most likely always will be the case, I do see a lot more women at industry events now than when I started with this company in 2000. And I’m sure those who’ve been in this industry longer than I have would agree.
I liked reading what Mandy Marxen wrote in a recent blog, when she shared a few thoughts on what’s leading the growth of women in the industry. One that stood out is the fact that more glass industry companies are embracing marketing, a field that tends to draw in more women than men. I also thought it was interesting that there’s increasingly more design involved when it comes to fabrication.
As she pointed out: “Working with designers and learning about interior design is key for the glazing industry, where many of the interior glass products are considered surfacing materials and finishes, and therefore specified by interior designers, a field dominated by women; rather than by architects or engineers, which are both still male-dominated fields.”
And glass is certainly an attractive material.
There are a lot of ideas, thoughts and opinions about why the number of women in the industry is growing. I don’t know what the exact answer is, or if there really is one, but something that I noticed about a lot of the women featured is that they don’t really think of the glass industry as a man’s business. They see it simply as any other business, and they just do their jobs—and they do them well.
Hope you enjoy reading this issue as much as I enjoyed working on it. Thank you to everyone who took the time to submit nominations and tell us about these stand-out women.