Invenergy Blog: March 25, 2021
Celebrating the 2020 Invenergy Women’s Network Award Winners
Since 2015, the Invenergy Women’s Network (IWN) has worked to promote the development and advancement of women at Invenergy and in the sustainable energy industry. Each year, the Invenergy Women’s Network Annual Awards recognize the talented colleagues at Invenergy for their leadership and contributions to creating a more inclusive workplace.
As we celebrate Women’s History Month, we are excited to share more about our 2020 award winners who work hard every day to build a more sustainable world, dare to break barriers, and pave the way for more women to succeed in the sustainable energy industry.
Read on to hear why IWN has been meaningful to them and about the women who keep them inspired.
Rising Star Award: The Rising Star Award honors a woman relatively new to the renewable energy industry who is already making significant professional contributions.
Congratulations to Rising Star Jacqueline Bruns, Associate, Finance and Capital Markets!
Jacqueline has been at Invenergy for two and a half years and was instrumental in numerous project closings in 2020. She is consistently recognized by peers for her work ethic, strong financial modeling skills, thoroughness, and demonstrated teamwork. She’s moderated monthly networking meetings through IWN and partnered with Black and Brown @ Invenergy (BBI), another Invenergy affinity group, for open discussions on race and equality.
Favorite IWN moment: My favorite IWN moment was our February 2021 Noon Network, lunchtime roundtable discussions with other IWN members on a timely topic. February 2021 was our second collaboration with BBI, the company’s affinity group that focuses on increasing awareness and opportunity for people of African ancestry in sustainable energy careers. In this session, we were discussing color consciousness, as opposed to colorblindness.
We had a great turnout at our first BBI-Noon Network collaboration but noticed participants were generally hesitant to share off-mute in the virtual meeting. In this second collaboration, we had a real conversation with participation from many people, and I could tell that my colleagues were relaxing into the discomfort of talking about race. Witnessing that growth in our community was very special and reminds me that we must continue to have these conversations, so this growth is sustained and furthered.
The woman who inspires you the most: We all have a woman (or women) in our lives who have inspired us in a deeply personal way. I also draw inspiration from many women who are making their own path, and I try not to cling to any one particular role model. Among the women who I have been thinking about lately are Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (U.S. Representative of New York’s 14th Congressional District), Jacqueline Novogratz (founder and CEO of Acumen), Chelsey Korus (my favorite yogi), Amanda Gorman (National Youth Poet Laureate), Stevie Van Horn (sustainability activist), and Shakira.
Champion Award: The Champion Award honors an Invenergy colleague who has shown a commitment to developing, mentoring, or recruiting women within Invenergy and the industry.
Congratulations to IWN Champion Corydon Haeffner, Operations Support Administrator!
Over his nine and a half years at Invenergy, Corydon has supported IWN through his involvement with the Scholarship Committee’s fundraising efforts. Last year, he led IWN’s Virtual Talent Show fundraiser, adapting to COVID-19 restrictions with a hugely successful first-of-its-kind virtual fundraising event, which raised more than $5,000 for an annual scholarship given by IWN in conjunction with the Society of Women Engineers. He has also been working with BBI to partner on joint scholarship efforts.
Favorite IWN moment: There have been several memorable moments throughout my time with IWN, like the raffle drawings at our summer and winter parties. But my most memorable moment was last year’s talent show fundraiser. Every year, we hold one or two fundraisers to raise money for IWN as well as for a scholarship through our partnership with the Society of Women Engineers. Of course, while we were all working remotely, we had to pivot to a new fundraising model, so we decided on a virtual talent show. The whole thing was great, from the planning to the promos, to the actual event. Everyone was excited about it. It was a wonderful team effort, raised money for a good cause, and turned out fantastic!
The woman who inspires you the most: I am continuously inspired by my daughters, Vivian and Ellowyn. They push me to be a better person, and I work to make the world a better place for them.
Woman of the Year: The Woman of the Year Award honors a woman who has demonstrated leadership, inspired peers, and made significant contributions to Invenergy, and by extension, the sustainable energy industry.
Congratulations to IWN Woman of the Year Linda Quarshie, Director of Insurance!
Linda has worked at Invenergy for six years and has built a team that supports every Invenergy project. Her colleagues across various departments have recognized her for being an incredible mentor who is always willing to take the time to train others. Linda’s active engagement in Invenergy’s affinity groups is inspiring as well – from supporting fundraising efforts for IWN to being integral to the launch of BBI, she works to engage our employees to truly better our company as a whole.
Favorite IWN or Invenergy moment – Of course, the Woman of the Year announcement during our company town hall!
But in all seriousness, one of my favorite Invenergy moments was when Energía del Pacifico, our liquified-natural-gas to power project in El Salvador, closed financing back in December of 2019. That was a proud moment for so many people and the company because it took a lot of coordination like never before. Although insurance is always a small piece of these transactions, without it, the project cannot close and so I am always proud of the team effort that goes into what we do here.
The woman who inspires you the most – My mother. This woman has done it all, and she is, in my opinion, the epitome of the entrepreneurial spirit. With just a high school diploma and six kids, she has started and run several businesses, including a large-scale poultry farm, wholesale bread business, and a government-contracted construction business; she’s traveled the globe to source and sell goods wholesale, and she’s run for election as a parliamentary candidate. I credit her for a lot of life lessons that I hope to some day pass on to my son.
We'd also like to recognize the 2020 IWN Awards Runners-Up:
Rising Star Runner-Up Karen Lessick, Associate General Counsel, has been recognized by colleagues, both in the legal department and other teams, for her collaborative approach in working with and mentoring others.
Champion Runner-Up Bill Bradley, Executive Vice President and General Counsel, has been instrumental in the creation of the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee and furthering the connection among affinity groups and the company.
And last but not least, Woman of the Year Runner-Up Stephanie Riggin, Administrative Assistant Program Lead, Renewable O&M, who has been instrumental to the success of Invenergy’s projects, consistently looks for ways to innovate processes within wind operations. She has been recognized for her leadership and her eagerness to assist and train colleagues.