Event Recap | Unhappy Hour

On Tuesday, April 4, members of Iowa Women in Architecture and the Polk County Women Attorneys gathered at Peace Tree Brewing for an 'Unhappy Hour' sponsored by Raker Rhodes Engineering. The event was in recognition of Equal Pay Day held every April to symbolize how far into the year women need to work to make what men did in the previous year.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Celeste Bremer and Courts Architect/Project Manager Emily Gloe Donovan spoke about their professional experiences and the wage gap between men and women. Judge Bremer encouraged all of us to speak up and advocate what you believe is right. Don't wait for someone to ask for your opinion or to invite you to participate. If you believe change is needed, make it happen just as she did when her kids were young and she saw a dangerous situation at their school. Celeste put her kids on their bus, donned an orange vest, drove to the school and was there to direct traffic and safely guide all of the students through the parking lot when the bus arrived!

Emily Gloe Donovan remembers a night when she was just a few years out of school and working late at the office. A former male classmate turned colleague informed her that he recently saw her salary and that she would be shocked by how much less she was being paid than he. At the time, her response was understandably one of confusion, shock and frustration. Like many women who have faced similar situations, this knowledge prompted Emily to look elsewhere for employment. After years of experience, perspective and reflection, Emily's advice to the group is to ask the hard questions and have the difficult conversations instead of getting discouraged and walking away.  Read more about our speakers and their experiences HERE.

Written by Heidi Pollman