Heldt, Newell, Patrick named to LRIW executive committee, new board structure approved

Group announces outstanding woman, member of year at Railway Interchange


Washington, DC, October 20, 2015 – Susan Robertson, immediate past president of the League of Railway Industry Women (LRIW) announced the election of a new executive committee at the LRIW annual membership meeting held during Railway Interchange 2015 in Minneapolis. The executive committee members are: President, Jodi Heldt – Sales Administration Manager, Whiting Corp; Vice President, Sylvia Newell, Executive Director, Canadian Association of Railway Suppliers; and Secretary, Amanda Patrick – trade show manager, Railway Supply Institute.

In addition, LRIW members approved a new board structure that will decrease the size of the board from 20 people to 15 and added positions for specific tasks including programming and awards.

“The new structure allows our board to be more nimble and facilitates member involvement through committees; a smaller board also creates more opportunities for member engagement. We urge our members to take on new tasks and promote women in our industry,” said LRIW Vice President Sylvia Newell, who designed the new board structure.

Said Robertson, “We hope this change will help to make LRIW a more member-driven association, allowing participants to use their talents to advance both LRIW and their own careers,” said Robertson. Robertson also noted that elections for three board members will be announced in November.

At the Opening General Session of Railway Interchange 2015, LRIW announced that GO Transit’s Vice President of Customer Service Mary Proc was chosen as its 2015 Outstanding Woman of the Year. The annual award, which is cosponsored by Progressive Railroading, is designed to recognize a woman who “consistently demonstrates vision, initiative, creativity and guidance in a leadership role.” Learn more about our winner.

“2015 marks the first time this award has been won by a Canadian nominee” notes LRIW’s Woman of the Year Chair, Sally Boven. “This year, the nominations were extremely diverse, with candidates from Class I railroads, short line railroads, industry associations, passenger rail, railroad contractors and more.  Mary’s success at Metrolinx/GO Transit showcases a deep commitment to enhancing the customer experience.”

LRIW also named Carol Steckbeck their 2015 Member of the Year.

“Carol has been such a huge help to LRIW this year,” said Amanda Patrick, LRIW Secretary, “from sending out our press releases to helping with our annual conference agenda. She’s really gone the extra mile to promote our organization.”

The 2016 LRIW Annual Conference will be held on October 2-4 in Omaha, Nebraska in conjunction with the RSI/CMA 2016 Rail Expo and Technical Conference.

About the League of Railway Industry Women

The League of Railway Industry Women (LRIW) is dedicated to providing leadership and support for the personal and professional growth of women in railroading and railway-related business. Founded in 1997, the group’s primary mission is to create a forum within the rail industry that provides women with the opportunity to achieve a broader understanding of the railroad business. Learn more at www.lriw.org.