With more than 30 years of experience in the engineering and construction industry, Jacqueline Hinman serves as President and Chief Executive Officer of CH2M, a Fortune 500 company recognized as a global leader in consulting, full-service engineering, construction, procurement, program management and operations for public and private clients. Ms. Hinman’s goals for the firm are market leadership, balanced growth and client stewardship. To achieve these goals, she has prioritized safety, quality, sustainability, technology, diversity, positive employee engagement and the highest standards of ethical behavior as drivers for CH2M’s success.
Prior to assuming the role of CEO, Ms. Hinman led the firm’s international division and major programs group, which included the delivery of large engineering, construction and operations programs worldwide, including the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, the Panama Canal Expansion and the MASDAR sustainable city in Abu Dhabi. During this time, Ms. Hinman was also responsible for overseeing the firm’s acquisitive growth strategies worldwide and for completing the acquisition of Halcrow Group, a UK-headquartered engineering firm with US$1 billion in annual revenue.
Ms. Hinman has lent her expertise to the Advisory Board of Catalyst Europe and the Metro Denver Sports Commission. She is an active member of the World Economic Forum Global Advisory Council on Infrastructure.
She was the first recipient of the Women Leading Change award from WorldDenver and in 2014 participated in a Clinton Global Initiative panel discussion on America’s competitiveness. She is a strong advocate for advancing the STEM pipeline and infrastructure development.
Ms. Hinman has a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Pennsylvania State University. She is a registered professional engineer and is accredited under the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program.
CH2M is the leading professional services firm delivering sustainable solutions for the world’s most complex challenges. With revenues of more than US$5 billion and 25,000 employees, CH2M people make a positive difference in the world, providing consulting, design, engineering, project management and delivery of vital infrastructure and resources to public- and private-sector clients across diverse industries. The firm and its foundation provide professional expertise, volunteerism and financial resources supporting STEM education and development at elementary, secondary and postsecondary levels to equip current and future leaders to address global resource challenges. CH2M consistently ranks among Ethisphere’s World’s Most Ethical Companies; among Engineering News-Record top-ranked firms in engineering, environmental consulting and program management; and among Verdantix leaders in sustainable engineering. In 2015, the firm received the Stockholm International Water Institute’s highest Industry Water Award for pioneering water conservation and reuse technologies.
Allowing students to apply the theories and principles learned in the classroom on practical tasks and real-world projects while working alongside the professionals they aspire to become is the best insight a student can gain as they make choices about their future. CH2M has a robust internship program and in the UK, we offer a Civil Engineering apprenticeship where our apprentices work 4 days a week and attend college for 1 day a week.
We also believe it is important to showcase the full breadth of the industry and the skills required to succeed in the business world, so while project work is at the nexus of our programs we enhance that by providing apprentice and interns with opportunities to hear from senior leaders about their career paths, develop soft skills through workshops, and expand their networking, presentation, and goal-setting skills. They work with a buddy to provide that in-depth look at their discipline while also working collaboratively with other young professionals on projects to encourage team building and problem solving.
By guiding, advising and coaching talent interested in STEM fields, we have the incredible opportunity to develop and strengthen the future leaders not only of our organization but of the larger engineering and STEM fields.
I am a strong advocate for mentoring. I am the proud CEO of a FORTUNE 500 company because differential investment was made in my career, I was guided by a diverse group of mentors, given stretch opportunities, and provided forums to strengthen my skills. Even in my current role I continue to pay it forward by mentoring women both inside and outside of my company. I support internal mentoring programs through our HR department and employee network groups and encourage my employees’ participation in professional associations. My approach to mentoring is what I call building my own personal Board of Directors, seeking mentorship from a diversity of perspectives and experience levels. Seek out mentors not just in the position you aspire to reach but also peers, and those earlier in their career journeys as well as mentors both inside and outside your industry.
Focus on the big picture, illustrate the opportunity and impact, and make it fun. By focusing on the impact that STEM professionals make in our world, rather than on what skills must be acquired or prerequisite classes to take, we can inspire students—particularly young women—to explore these career paths. Engineers often don’t get the credit for one of the largest strides in public health but it was the development of the sewer system that helped to curb the spread of the bubonic plague while the design of the Federal Highway system spurred the U.S. economy and American connectivity in new ways, so put that way civil engineering is a pretty cool job. Our world is facing both unprecedented challenges and opportunities, the students studying STEM today are going to be the leaders and innovators who turn these challenges into opportunities laying the foundation for human progress for generations to come. A career in STEM can be game-changing, while at the same time providing variety, fulfillment and a top paycheck.
STEM programs need to provide students with opportunities to collaborate and implement creative problem solving, which at the highest level is what STEM does—it’s not about analyzing formulas, crunching numbers, or developing complex code, rather those are the tools that students will utilize to break out of the box and identify the winning solution.
Allow students to see the fruits of their studies and make connections to the real-world. Hands-on experiences demonstrating the relevance and importance of STEM allow students to focus on the greater good when coursework becomes too much. CH2M proudly support organizations like Engineers Without Borders giving university students hands-on design experience to deliver infrastructure improvements to developing communities. Programs like Rice University’s DREAM program or Let’s Talk Science in Canada, give university students opportunities to pay it forward and encourage their younger peers to consider STEM careers.
Finally, mentoring is an important element to any STEM program by providing opportunities for students to foster relationships with working professionals. Seeing examples of people who have overcome similar challenges and are in successful, rewarding careers is a motivator in and of itself.
Investment in diversity and STEM is an investment in our future workforce and business success, and we feel strongly that we have a role to play in creating and nurturing that workforce from an early age.
As part of our diversity recruitment strategy, we support National Diversity Organizations that support STEM initiatives via conference participation, providing internships and supporting their outreach programs.
Our CH2M Foundation partners with organizations targeting under-represented populations at all stages of the pipeline. We’ve teamed with the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) to bring the SEEK program to 300 Denver elementary students. We get a double benefit of inspiring young students to consider engineering while networking with the college mentors who are some of the brightest minority engineering students.
In the UK, we’ve teamed with Social Mobility Foundation to offer an engineering residential program, bringing 20 high school students to our London office for a week of mentoring, project site visits, hands-on activities and skills workshops. With a third of the students being young women and many participants from low-income or immigrant families, we’re able to introduce a diverse and often underrepresented pool of talent to the breadth of career opportunities available in STEM.