WCOE News

Karen Barbour featured in Forbes article

Karen Barbour, president of The Barbour Group co-chairs state committees, testifies in Congress, and serves on her local economic development committee. Her business is providing surety bonds to contractors and much of it involves government contracts.

“My industry needs to change,” Barbour says. “Small businesses need to wake up. She has advocated for change in everything from the way small business credit scores are dinged when they seek bonding from multiple companies to making government agencies unbundle contracts so small bidders have a better chance.

Building Reputation Builds Business for 2 Successful Women

Karen Barbour, president of The Barbour Group co-chairs state committees, testifies in Congress, and serves on her local economic development committee. Her business is providing surety bonds to contractors and much of it involves government contracts.

» Read more at Forbes.com

Karen Barbour is awarded the 2010 Maryland Muscular Dystrophy Association Community Service Award

Construction Coalition for a Drug and Alcohol Free Workplace

If there’s one thing we can all agree on, it’s this – there is no place for drugs and alcohol on a construction site.

It was that simple phrase that led to the creation of the “Construction Coalition for a Drug and Alcohol Free Workplace”—a group of construction industry organizations that joined together in order to eliminate the fatalities and injuries caused by substance abuse on construction jobsites.

Women-owned construction firms on the rise despite public perception

When Tara Kramer, owner of Ri Ky Roofing in Portland, entered the construction industry 25 years ago, it wasn’t like it is today.

“It was male-dominated, most definitely,” she said. “In fact, the company that I joined had 40 offices nationwide and they didn’t have any saleswomen.”

A lot has changed. Today, women-owned businesses make up an increasingly significant percentage of the nation’s contractors. But the industry still has a long way to go.

St. Louis Business Journal Character Spotlight: WCOE member Jane Hilboldt

Having clients ask to talk with your husband rather than you when you’re CEO can be pretty bruising.

But Jane Hilboldt, who heads Hilboldt Curtainwall, stuck it out in the male-dom- inated construction industry and said that in the six years since she and her husband, Denny, launched the business, she has gained much respect.

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