MEGA Maryland panel featured Jo Ellen Sines representing women in construction

Inspired by Governor Hogan’s 2020 “Year of the Woman” proclamation, MEGA Maryland partnering organization WTS brought together a panel of inspiring female business leaders on Tuesday, Oct. 27.  While celebrating the achievements of these amazing women in the advancement of architecture, engineering, construction, science and management, attendees learned what it takes to become effective and successful leaders in these fields today.

The Women Leading the Way panel was moderated by Odessa Phillip, Assedo Consulting. In addition to Jo Ellen Sines, DBIA, vice president of construction for M Luis Construction Co., Inc., panelists were Angela J. Jones, PE, HNTB; Sutapa Samanta, PE, Maryland State Highway Administration; and Caryn J. G. Brookman, Blackwater Environmental Group. Phoenix Engineering sponsored this panel discussion.

The panelists discussed a series of topics, including:

  • What I do is important to industry because…
  • Do you remember the moment you felt that you belonged in this industry?
  • What is your favorite project? Why was that?
  • How do you encourage others to come into this field? Why should folks enter construction?
  • Do you have a mentor? Do you mentor? Is this important?

About WTS

As stated on their website, “WTS attracts, sustains, connects and advances women’s careers to strengthen the transportation industry. Our vision is for equity and access for women in transportation. Our programs are leading the way to making that vision a reality.

WTS International was founded in 1977 by a group of pioneering women in transportation who realized that women’s careers would benefit from professional development, encouragement and recognition to support their advancement in transportation professions. Now, after more than 40 years of growth and development, WTS is an international organization with more than 6500 members (including women and men) and 79 chapters. WTS is connected to a network of 40,000 transportation professionals. Local chapters generate high-caliber professional development and networking opportunities for WTS members across the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. Through its professional activities, networking opportunities, and unparalleled access to industry and government leaders, WTS is turning the glass ceiling into a career portal.”


MEGA Maryland is the premier event for the architecture, engineering, and construction industry. The mission is to provide relevant and meaningful information inclusive of all members of the AEC industry with a focus on helping today’s small, minority, woman and veteran-owned businesses grow and thrive. Boasting more than 25 speakers, the 2020 MEGA Maryland conference was held virtually from Sept. 28 to Oct. 30.

The conference is presented by the Maryland chapters of the industry’s leading professional organizations including the Society of American Military Engineers (SAME)American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC)Design Build Institute of America (DBIA)Society of Marketing Professional Services (SMPS)WTS International (WTS), and Mid-Atlantic Region of Environmental Professionals (MAREP).