At first glimpse a woman with high heels on a roof, and on the cover of the top roofing magazine in the United States, Roofing Contractor, might cause a stir.

At first glimpse a woman with high heels on a roof, and on the cover of the top roofing magazine in the United States, Roofing Contractor, might cause a stir.

Well, the story, “Breaking Barriers: Hispanic Businesswoman Wins Praise in Roofing Industry,” did cause a commotion - for two different reasons.

First, thank you for all the women roofers, and men, who read the story on Sandra Sedillo-McGlothlin, a partner at Empire Roofing in Fort Worth, Texas. The dozens of e-mails and phone calls I received came from people who wanted to talk about the plight of women in the male-dominated roofing industry, and how Sandra Sedillo-McGlothlin’s story has inspired others in similar situations. In our story, we talked about the rise of a Hispanic woman to the top. The phone calls and e-mails embraced the story as one that needed to be told. One e-mail talked about “personal struggles” that mirrored Sandra’s story, while another e-mail referred to Sedillo-McGlothlin as “someone to look up to.”

However, there was second part to the excitement that the Sedillo-McGlothlin story generated. Mainly, why would a woman wear high heels on the roof of a building?

The explanation is simple: the photo was staged. At Roofing Contractor, we take pride in helping contractors succeed in business by delivering superior information via our magazines, Web sites, events and research. And with that, we also take great pride in coming up with cover photos that are intriguing and help tell the story. We always strive to make sure our workers are tied off properly or have the correct safety harnesses on. We want to portray both proper safety procedures and best practices. After all, this is the real world and nobody tells you about the roofing world better than Roofing Contractor.

With that said, we took a chance on a story that is unique, and we further took the opportunity to put Sandra Sedillo-McGlothlin on the cover with her high heels on. No, she wasn’t working at the time. No, she was not near the edge of the building. No, she did not cause any damage to the membrane. And no, we do not want our contractors walking on a roof with high heels.

But this was a unique situation that required a unique photo. We apologize if we ruffled some feathers, but if you read the story you will discover that high heels, although never a good item to wear on a roof, might simply be showing the elevation of women in the roofing business.