LOS ANGELES, March 29, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — Petrina K.M. Gooch, SPHR, is a principal and corporate leader at Harley Ellis Devereaux (HED), where she has led human resources for 10 years. As of March 22, she is also a voting member of the company’s Board of Director as well, making her one of a few female, African American members of AEC boards of directors in the country.
This month is Women’s History Month, which included a Women in Construction week; these are markers of awareness in the culture and the AEC industry of the gender imbalance seen across many firms and disciplines. Ethnic diversity is also an issue. Gooch has been active on both fronts within the AEC industry, She is a member of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) Large Firm Roundtable (LFRT) Diversity Task Force and an Executive Committee member of the AIA LFRT Human Resources group. Her elevation within HED is a strong indication of focus on these pressing industry issues within the company.
HED sees diversity and inclusion as tremendous opportunities for the firm and the industry. “We see diversity of perspective as a direct and positive influence on our work and on our clients and the communities we serve,” Gooch says. “At the same time, we want to be part of the change that is needed — and beginning to happen — in the industry overall.”
The industry is lacking in diversity, notes Peter Devereaux, FAIA, HED’s chairman and CEO. “We believe that collaboration among people with a diversity of experiences and views naturally leads to more innovative and creative thinking, which is why we value it so highly. The elevation of Petrina Gooch to the HED Board of Directors signals our commitment to building a leadership team that reflects that diversity, too.”
This new role at HED gives Gooch greater influence within the firm. “HED has always been interested in and valued different perspectives,” she says. “I appreciate the recognition of the value I’ve brought to the organization and the confidence in my ability to continue to manifest a positive impact through this new role on the Board of Directors.”
As far as diversifying leadership around gender and ethnicity, an evolution is under way. The first step toward diversity is transparency around the topic, to which HED is committed. The HED Board of Directors now includes 18% female representation and 18% representation from diverse racial groups.
ABOUT Harley Ellis Devereaux (HED)
Founded in 1908, HED seeks creative solutions that have a positive impact for its clients, the community, and the world. HED has earned a reputation for excellence in all facets of architecture, including design, consulting, engineering and planning services. The firm serves clients in a broad range of market sectors including Workplace, Housing, Mixed Use, Science + Technology, Healthcare, Higher Education and Pre K-12 + Community Education from offices in six U.S. locations. See how HED advances your world at www.hed.design.