We Educate, Promote and Celebrate.
We Facilitate Access for Women in the Skilled Trades.
Who We Are
The Washington Women in Trades Association was founded in 1978 by and for tradeswomen to gather and share information.
Washington Women in Trades (WWIT) is a community based, non-profit 501 (c)(3) organization whose mission is to improve women's economic equity and self-sufficiency through access and success in high-wage, high-skilled careers in the construction, manufacturing and transportation sector.
This all-volunteer organization has established itself as a group of industry experts who facilitate connections between the working woman, the ‘wanting-to-be-working’ woman, prospective employers and government agencies. We have educated students about women in non-traditional trades through attendance at school career days, participation in community events and conferences.
We encourage networking, establish scholarships and counsel women through difficult work issues. Through hard work and partnership, we have had much success. While we enjoy celebrating that success, we have much more to do toward helping women both attain and retain high-wage, high-skilled careers. Unfortunately, the percentage of women in the construction trades is still dismal, and the need for trained workers is becoming nearly epidemic.
We continue to strive toward equal opportunity and a strong community infrastructure.
What We Do
Washington Women in Trades work matters, not just to the individual women, but to our whole community.
Our most publicly visible project is the Trades Fair held every spring at Seattle Center. Essentially an educational tool to introduce young women and the general public to the trades, the event hosts over 100 exhibitors and has an attendance of approximately 1,000 students and work-ready women. The fair features apprenticeship and resource information, hands-on demonstrations, workshops and career opportunities.The fair has been dubbed “The Super Bowl of Northwest Career Fairs”!
In 2007, we created a second major event, the Annual Dream Big Dinner©, an awards banquet and all round celebration of Tradeswomen.
Other events and activities of note...
WWIT was proud to partner with the University of Washington on a study with a focus on women's health and safety in construction. The second part of the project created ways to address issues, particularly with a mentorship program. The study is completed. More info here.
Women4Women Tiny House Project
WWIT members work to help the homeless find permanent housing through their involvement with the Women4Women Tiny House Project
In an effort to support female apprentices and others who are new to the skilled trades occupations, WWIT has created a women’s work clothes clearinghouse called “Rosie’s Closet”. It’s a way for anyone (men or women) interested in donating lightly used work clothing to be used by someone interested in walking in a similar career path.
And as always, we continue to honor and support the legacy of our foremothers, the legendary WWII Rosie the Riveters.
2012 Tradeswoman of the Year,
Wildland Firefighter, US Park Service & US Forest Service
Robin Murphy, Co-Chair
Jo Scherer, Co-Chair
Nettie Dokes, Treasurer
Alice Lockridge, Outreach Coordinator
Sharon Walker, Member at Large
Marilyn Kennedy, Core Member
Guy Astley, Core Member
Lisa Marx, Core Member
Jamie Beethe, Core Member
Ruth Harmony, Core Member
Cynthia Payne, Project Manager
Washington Women in Trades is a 501c3 organization.
EIN #: 91-1951301