Lea & Braze Engineering has always made it a priority and an intentional effort in our recruitment practices to encourage women to join the profession and our firm. We empower our female engineers on our team to explore personal and professional growth opportunities.
In celebration of Women’s History Month, we would like to recognize and note the contributions of our female engineers in our firm. Our engineers share their experiences, lessons learned and advice for aspiring female engineers.
Roxana Corona, P.E., Senior Project Manager, Head of San Jose Office
Roxana has been part of the Lea & Braze Engineering team since 2008. She began as a civil intern assisting in commercial, residential and public sector projects. Her leadership and communication skills with the design team members, clients and various municipality officials have helped promote her to Senior Project Manager.
At the beginning of 2020, Roxana was placed in charge of the newly expanded San Jose Branch Office. She leads a team of highly skilled civil engineers in various development types.
Vimbainashe Anda, Design Engineer
Vimbainashe enjoys how the combination of science, functionality, sustainability and aesthetic beauty – is the heart of being an engineer. “Civil engineers shape the built environment around us and we have the ability to design spaces to make the world a safer place for people, animals and plants to inhabit,” says Vimbainashe.
Vimbainashe advises women new to the civil engineering profession to bring their best and full selves to engineering and to not be afraid to speak up and be heard.
Kimberly Ayala, Civil Design Engineer
In high school, Kimberly was drawn to drafting. She enjoys how the profession allows for an array of specializations. “There are no limits in the knowledge that an area can offer, especially for a civil engineer,” says Kimberly.
Kathlene Cacho, Civil Design Engineer
As a child, Kathlene would study buildings and was in awe and admiration of the work that it took to create and design them. Kathlene explored architecture and design as career options but she ultimately chose civil engineering. “I wanted to be a part of something that would be useful for others regardless if it was for a home or a business,” says Kathlene.
Teresa Brosius, Project Engineer
Teresa has never considered her gender as an impediment to becoming an engineer. “I face each obstacle in my profession the same way I face obstacles in my personal life – tackle it and move on,” says Teresa.
Teresa frequently gives training seminars to new engineers. She firmly believes that anyone can succeed as long as there is a willingness and drive. “It’s ok to ask a lot of questions and it’s also ok to get challenged from your peers or manager,” says Teresa.
Mireya Garcia, Design Engineer
With a strong love for problem solving, Mireya enjoys helping the design team solve issues. Mireya has found that whenever she second guesses herself, she turns the experience around by learning lessons to become a better engineer. She believes with time, comes experience and this has made her confident in her work.
Lizbeth Hernandez, P.E., Design Engineer
Growing up, Lizbeth was good in math, so a career in civil engineering came naturally for her. She finds it rewarding to see a project finalized, knowing she played an important role in the design and completion of a project.
Early in her career, she often doubted and questioned her abilities. Over time and with more experience, that feeling faded. Lizbeth advises new engineers to find a good a mentor and to never be scared to ask questions. “Asking a question does not mean you’re not equipped for the job, it simply means you’re growing and developing your skills,” says Lizbeth.
Meredith Emerald Gress. E.I.T., Design Engineer
Meredith was drawn to the public service aspect of the civil engineering profession. She finds her career rewarding and enjoys collaborating on a project. Meredith is grateful for the support she has received and for the women who paved the way in the engineering profession.
Marianne Medrano, E.I.T., Civil Design Engineer
Marianne enjoys the challenge of finding the solutions for her clients. “The best times are when I know I am truly helping people,” says Marianne.
For Marianne, the biggest obstacle was finding a role model with a similar background and experience. However, she is seeing more and more women in the field of civil engineering and that the field is becoming more diversified. Marianne’s advises, “Pick a role model and stick to your goals.”
Zenab Ali, E.I.T.
Zenab’s grandfather inspired her to become a civil engineer. She would spend summers in Pakistan where she would watch her grandfather work on improving the infrastructure of that county.
Zenab is thankful to the women she has met throughout her career. “They inspire me to push myself to be a better engineer every day, and for that I am truly thankful,” says Zenab.
Veronica Denne, Design Engineer
For Veronica, being an engineer is a way to give back to society. “Engineering as a career provides a great way to make meaningful contributions,” says Veronica. She enjoys not only collaborating with her fellow engineers but also learning from each other.
Veronica continues to support and empower women to enter the engineering field. “Take pride in your accomplishments as a woman and as an engineer,” says Veronica.