Sallie Bradshaw, founder of Bradshaw Construction, thinks being a woman in the industry has actually helped her in several ways. This realization occurred to her after being looked at as a “housewife with a hobby” when she first began her career. Since then, though, Bradshaw has constructed more than 500 homes in the past 30 years. She does believe the opinion of women in the construction industry has changed since she first began, to more welcoming and accepting. Builder and designer Jennifer Hoffman agreed, finding that few men question her abilities now, which is outweighed by those who are supportive.
At the other end of the experience spectrum, Jennifer Hoffman is the owner and principal designer behind J. Hoffman Studio in Chapel Hill, N.C. Hoffman, who has been in the business since 2015, said she was nervous when she started out, especially after being out of the traditional workforce for a dozen years raising her three children.
With a background in architecture and some experience in construction during college, Hoffman began using her minivan to lug around lumber to job sites, which was met with more than a few raised eyebrows. She has since bought a pickup truck, which she hardly ever gets to drive anymore after hiring some staff and growing the business.