Through Q&A articles and Instagram/Facebook Takeovers, our "In Her Boots" series is designed to showcase and provide an inside look at what a day in the life looks like in the shoes (or boots) for some of the exceptional women at Clark.
Today we're highlighting Ava Norton. Ava, a senior manager, leads the national development, employee training, and execution of Building Information Modeling (BIM) for Clark's VDC Department.
What drew you to a career in the construction industry?
When I was working as an architect in a construction administration role, I started to attend coordination meetings to help work through elements which weren’t working in the design.
I started to really enjoy coming up with solutions in real-time and having the opportunity to work with trade contractors and the fresh perspectives that they brought to the table.
What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
I have received a lot of great advice in my lifetime. One that I like to refer back to comes from my dad. He likes to say that “everyone is someone's daughter or son.”
When I’m confronted with a challenging person or personality, I try to remind myself that there's a story behind everyone. I’m reminded to be human above all else in my daily interactions.
What is one of your favorite projects you have had the opportunity to work on?
There have been so many awesome projects I’ve had the opportunity to support. One project that comes to mind is the Cannon House Office Building Renewal project.
I learned so much from our trade contractors, our client, and the Clark team. The experience I had on that project was invaluable and I made friendships and connections that I still hold to this day.
What is your proudest professional achievement?
Definitely passing my ARE (architectural registration) exams. I am not a strong test taker and I had to push myself through seven exams. I had four left when I joined Clark.
I still remember jumping up and down in the jobsite trailer when I received word that I passed the final exam!
Who has had the greatest influence on you and why?
My husband (Hamed) and my sister (Alysen) definitely have the largest influence on me.
Alysen pushed me in high school to branch outside of our hometown and to travel. I think I am a much more cultured person because of her.
Hamed is the most supportive spouse a person could ever have. Sometimes he has to remind me to believe in myself as much as he believes in me.
What advice do you have for a young woman looking to enter the industry?
Bring your brand to the table. It’s really easy to take on personalities that you feel are strong, confident, etc. The reality is that every leader has his or her own brand, and there isn't one size fits all for how you hold yourself in your profession.
Check out our Instagram Story as Ava shows us what a day in the life is like in her boots.