Three BASF women in manufacturing were among 130 individuals recognized nationally through the Manufacturing Institute’s 2018 STEP Ahead Awards. Focusing on science, technology, engineering and production (STEP), the program annually honors female leaders for their advocacy, mentorship, engagement, and leadership in the sector.
BASF employees, Veronica Braker, Vice President of Operations for Performance Materials in Wyandotte, Michigan, Kristen Pforr, Vice President of Operations for Chemical Intermediates in Geismar, Louisiana, and Amanda Taylor, Environmental, Health and Safety Specialist, in Wyandotte, Michigan received awards. Additionally, Ms. Taylor was among 30 women designated as Emerging Leaders – representing young women who are the future of manufacturing and have demonstrated exceptional accomplishments early on in their careers.
As the national sponsor of the STEP Ahead initiative, BASF collaborates with The Manufacturing Institute on the grassroots movement to encourage women to embrace manufacturing as a viable career and help them overcome the shared challenges they may face. The initiative provides and promotes mentoring, and leads research on the topic.
“I’ve seen the evolution of manufacturing as more women enter into leadership roles, bringing purpose, inclusion and confidence into the male-dominated workforce,” said Heidi Alderman, Senior Vice President Intermediates, North America at BASF. “The future of manufacturing requires an acute focus on culture and striving to create an inclusive environment. BASF offers exciting career opportunities within manufacturing for women at all educational levels.”
STEP Ahead honorees across the U.S. pledge to promote the role of women in the manufacturing sector. Women constitute one of the largest pools of untapped talent in the field. Not only does the STEP Ahead initiative bolster manufacturing’s attractiveness to women, it also plays an important role in improving the perception of careers in the industry among younger generations. The Manufacturing Institute, Deloitte, and APICS conducted a survey that found that the award honorees impacted more than 300,000 individuals – from industry peers to school age children – over the last five years.
“The women who we are celebrating represent the exciting career opportunities available in manufacturing,” said Tom Yura, Senior Vice President at BASF and National Association of Manufacturing’s Board of Directors member. “The STEP Ahead Award honors successful women in this industry for their significant achievements and the positive impact they have made on their companies, their communities and the industry as a whole.”
BASF sponsored the sixth-annual award ceremony, which was held April 10 in Washington, D.C. For more information about BASF careers and efforts that promote women in manufacturing, visit http://www.basf.us/women.