As she clutched the WORLD Award Veteran statue, Stephanie Baird, general manager of Oregon-based Bliss Roofing, inspired the 500 women attending National Women in Roofing Day.
“In roofing, we are an aggressive movement, not a feminist one,” she said, receiving a roar of applause.
The award was presented March 5 during the sixth annual NWiR Day, a one-day event for women in the roofing industry. Lisa Garcia, chair of the Awards Committee, said that the WORLD Awards honor women in the roofing industry who have demonstrated outstanding commitment and service to NWiR and the industry. Submissions are scrubbed of personal information, giving the committee an unbiased view of each candidate before selecting the winners.
Baird recently celebrated 29 years of working in the roofing industry. She started at Bliss Roofing in 1994 as a receptionist and worked her way up to general manager, where she oversees all departments and operations.
She is a founding member of NWiR and a past member of its national board of directors. She is a former council chair of the NWiR Oregon Council and currently chairs its community outreach committee, where she inspires others with a passion for philanthropic and volunteer work.
Thanks to her efforts, roofing professionals installed a roof on Anisa’s Place, a shelter for victims of sex trafficking, and the Oregon chapter held a women’s build for Habitat for Humanity in December 2018, where it donated all labor and materials for the project. Bliss Roofing has also donated labor to various other Habitat for Humanity projects, the Doernbecher Children’s Hospital and Homes for Our Troops.
“I’m honored to be recognized,” said Baird. “I think a lot has to do with the community outreach projects I’ve been involved with in the last few years. That’s my niche in the industry, I believe in cause marketing.”
Along with NWiR, Baird is on the board of directors for the Western States Roofing Contractors Association. Garcia said Baird has served as a role model for her as well as many others in NWiR.
“She is a strong woman, and she isn’t afraid to speak her mind while making sure everyone else in the room has a chance to speak,” said Garcia. “Her dedication to her career and her community, however, are not overshadowed by her immense dedication to her family. She’s involved and fully present in her family’s lives, and with purposeful intention, she achieves a successful work/life balance.”
Proof of this was evident, as her daughter was present during the awards presentation to celebrate. She also texted the rest of her family the good news as her mom received accolades from dozens of women.
“I’m truly blessed and grateful to be part of the roofing industry and to be a part of this group,” said Baird.
WORLD Rising Star
The WORLD Award Rising Star honor recognizes the achievements of emerging talent in the roofing industry and NWiR who represent the next generation of leaders. This year’s award went to Erica Sherman, building science manager at GAF. According to her LinkedIn page, she worked as a research assistant and postdoctoral research associate at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln prior to joining GAF as a research scientist in September 2017.
Sherman was not present for NWiR Day, but Garcia praised Sherman’s crucial role in growing the NWiR’s New Jersey council as well as the depth of her roofing science and technology knowledge.
“I’m told you can ask her anything about a shingle, any technical question, and she will be able to talk to you for hours,” said Garcia. “Only women in this room can really, truly appreciate how amazing that is and what an accomplishment that is … a few decades ago, would any of us have been able to fathom this and celebrate a woman who can talk extensively about shingles?”
NWiR Day is an annual conference held prior to the International Roofing Expo. Multidisciplinary women professionals in the roofing industry are invited to network and learn about business strategies and tactics along with sharing their success stories.
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