Women in Construction Week: Chasing Dreams

Women in Construction Week is about raising awareness of the many career possibilities available to women in the construction industry. During this week and every week, we are proud of the PCL women who are paving the road to construction. We caught up with Denise Deville, project manager, Industrial, who shared her journey and advice for the next generation of female leaders. Read her story:

Where did you start your career?
I started my career when I was 19 years old as an entry-level helper for an industrial construction company. I spent three years learning as much as I possibly could from the experienced team. The job was the beginning of something very special for me, as I drafted, by hand, every piece of structural steel for a 10-story bio-fuel boiler we fabricated and installed.

How did you land at PCL?
Essentially, networking. While working on a project in 2002, my husband and I met a fellow construction individual who later introduced us to opportunities with PCL. 

What keeps you interested in construction?
One of the biggest things I’ve found is that the industry has an extreme sense of comradery. Construction workers are known for their loyalty to each other. Being part of something that is much bigger than yourself is very rewarding. I have met a tremendous number of lifelong friends from both the projects and the communities in which we’ve worked.

What is your favorite project celebration?
I love each celebration! However, I specifically love celebrations for accomplishing safety records and Family Day. Family Day celebrates employee’s loved ones who are constantly supporting their significant other’s career aspirations. 

If you could give your younger self advice, what would it be?
Find your voice, trust your instincts and don’t be afraid to fail. One piece of advice that has followed me for many years: don’t hesitate when you are offered a promotion. Take the position because your superiors see more in you than you will allow yourself to see. If you fail, you will learn from your mistakes and become a better leader as a result. There is nothing to lose.

As a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?
As a little girl, I was first interested in becoming an Air Force pilot or a flight nurse. I found my calling very unexpectedly!


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