WTS Central Virginia 2023 Summer Newsletter

Letter from the President

Dear WTS Members and Colleagues,

There are few things as important as the need to feel connected to a larger community.  This is especially important for women in predominantly male professions. An opportunity to connect with women who not only share professional interests but also shared experiences is invaluable.  Membership in WTS provides such opportunities along with mentorship and guidance for young women in transportation.  

In the WTS Central Virginia Chapter, we are focusing on developing women leaders in transportation.  In 2023, we have focused our programs on women leaders in the industry.  During our May State of Transportation event, we learned from three women executives about the future of freight movement in the Commonwealth.  Our panel consisted of Cathie Vick, Chief Development and Public Affairs Officer of the Port of Virginia, Jennifer DeBruhl, Director of the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation, and Cathy McGhee, Chief Deputy Commissioner of the Virginia Department of Transportation, who not only educated but served as an example to young women of what is possible.

The WTS Central Virginia Chapter consistently strives to guide and inspire women in transportation, while also providing leadership experience to prepare for these roles.  I invite professionals at all stages of their careers not only to be members, but to take advantage of the various types of volunteer opportunities.  These can vary from serving as a committee member to chairing a committee.  Please reach out to the chapter if you want to take the next step in your career.  

Together we can advance both the transportation industry and the professional women who lead it.

Becca Sial, AICP
Solutions Engineer & President of WTS CVA Chapter



Save the Date!

Joint Social

Joint members of APWA Mid-Atlantic, ASCE Richmond Branch, ASHE Old Dominion, and VASITE, at the Southern Railway Taphouse in Richmond on June 28! It's not too late; click here to register.

Sustainable Transportation in Virginia

The Central Virginia Chapter will be hosting an introduction of VDOT's Office of Sustainability and Resiliency on July 26. This will be a virtual event from noon to 1pm.

HRBT & CBBT:  A Tale of Two Tunnels

Martha Gross, PE, VDOT Major Projects Technical Director, and Michael Crist, CBBT Deputy Executive Director of Infrastructure, will be presenting virtually on their ongoing bridge tunnel projects on August 8. Registration will open soon.

Annual Reception and Recognition Awards

We'll be hosting this annual event at the Virginia War Memorial in Richmond, VA on September 28. It's not too late to submit at nomination for the following awards. 

  • Woman of the Year
  • Member of the Year
  • Ray LaHood Award
  • Rosa Parks Diversity Leadership Award
  • Employer of the Year
  • Sponsor of the Year


Spring Program Recap

Advanced Air Mobility: The Future of Aviation

We thank Tracy Tynan and Tom McHahon, of Virginia Innovation Partnership Corporation, for presenting an overview of Advanced Air Mobility (AAM). This is a new concept of air transportation intended to serve people and places currently underserved by both air and ground transport. Both in-person and virtual attendees learned about how AAM will effect roadway congestion, enhance tourism and public safety, provide aerial work missions, and much more. 

State of Transportation

Moderator and three female panelists at the State of Transportation Event.

Transportation professionals from across the state gathered to learn about current and upcoming freight innovations in Virginia. Women executive leaders Jennifer DeBruhl (DRPT), Cathy McGhee (VDOT), and Cathie Vick (Port of Virginia) participated in a panel discussion on these innovations along with general career advice.

WTS International Conference

12 Central Virginia Chapter Members at the WTS International Conference

In May, the Central Virginia Chapter was honored once again as a Circle of Excellence - Gold Chapter at the 2023 International conference. 12 members of the Central Virginia Chapter, pictured above, attended this year's conference in Atlanta, Georgia. The focus of the event was the "Great Intersection." Attendees learned about equity and inclusion and how to apply these lessons in their professional lives.  


Looking to Get more Involved?

Join a Committee!

Make the most of your membership by joining one of our committees. Committees include communications, sponsorship, membership, programs, scholarship, and Transportation You. If you're interested in taking a more active role within the chapter, please contact our Chapter President, Rebecca Sial, at [email protected].

Board Meetings

The WTS Central Virginia Board meets the second Tuesday of each month at noon via Zoom! To learn more about chapter business, upcoming events, and committee options, we invite you to check out a board meeting. Dial-in information is below:

Join Zoom Meeting: https://us06web.zoom.us/j/6728450837

Meeting ID: 672 845 0837

Mobile +13052241968

Find your local number: https://us06web.zoom.us/u/keD4FZnKJe


Thank You to our 2023 Corporate Sponsors

WTSCVA 2023 Sponsors