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Celebrating Women’s History Month at CNH

Did you know that more than half of CNH Architects’ staff are women? Nine of the company’s 13 staff members are women, including three in leadership positions.

Women have long been the minority in the architecture field, though that’s steadily starting to change. In 2019, according to NCARB.org, nearly two in five new architects were women. Those women completed the licensure process two months faster than the average women did in 2018. Also according to NCARB, women architects are setting the bar high. On average, they complete their education, experience, and examination requirements sooner than their male peers. In 2019, women finished their core licensure requirements in an average of 11.9 years.

At CNH, women staff members include two licensed architects, one certified interior designer, three architectural designers, one interior designer, one accountant, and one marketing manager.

Being a woman in the architecture / construction industry has definitely had its challenges over the years and continues to do so, but I am proud of the fact that CNH has not only supported women in our firm but also fosters the development of women in leadership roles within the firm. Sixteen years ago I was the only female architect/designer in the firm, today I am one of seven architects/designers that now make up the majority of the firm.

-Brooke Jacobson, CNH Principal Architect

With the growth, also comes more support. Professional organizations such as the Organization of Women Architects and Design Professionals (OWA) and Association for Women in Architecture and Design (AWA+D) are increasing their presence in the workplace, as are socially-driven groups on Facebook and LinkedIn. CNH Senior Associate Jessica Johnson Kreps is an active member of Women in Architecture and Mothers in Architecture groups on Facebook.

“It’s a supportive community, and a good place to go for work and home life advice. The other women truly understand where you’re coming from,” Johnson Kreps said. “It was especially nice when I was completing my ARE exams.”

Women’s History Month

Women’s History Month had its origins as a national celebration in 1981 when Congress requested the President to proclaim the week beginning March 7, 1982 as “Women’s History Week.” In 1987, after being petitioned by the National Women’s History Project, Congress designated the month of March 1987 as “Women’s History Month.” Between 1988 and 1994, Congress passed additional resolutions requesting and authorizing the President to proclaim March of each year as Women’s History Month. Since 1995, several presidents have issued a series of annual proclamations designating the month of March as “Women’s History Month.” These proclamations celebrate the contributions women have made to the United States and recognize the specific achievements women have made over the course of American history. To learn more, visit womenshistorymonth.gov.

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Burnsville Fire Station No. 1: Coming Soon

CNH’s largest fire station to date, the City of Burnsville’s Fire Station No. 1 is home to a crew of all full-time firefighters and more than 44,000 SF with 10 apparatus bays. Firefighter safety was one of nine top priorities for the station. Multiple contamination zones and a designated de-contamination area will allow firefighters to keep contaminated equipment and clothing in the apparatus bay until decontaminated. Another priority in the design was firefighter mental health. A warning system that slowly ramps up with alert tones and lighting while only alerting responding staff ensures firefighters are not awoken in an abrupt manner. The station includes areas for relaxation with different lighting to promote natural sleep rhythms, as well as a yoga studio and meditation garden. Extensive firefighter training features including Firefighter 1 and advanced training elements are another highlight of the station.