NAWIC Leadership

Jen Burton, NAWIC, National Association of Women in Construction, Buffalo Niagara Chapter 3

Jen Burton, Chapter President
Oaks Dumpster Rental

Jen has been the General Manager for 3+ years at Oaks Dumpster Rental, which is a quickly growing roll-off dumpster provider in NY and PA. Prior to this position, she was a Sales Manager at a large corporation in the travel industry for 20 years. As Chapter President, Jen serves on all the NAWIC committees.

Jen was formerly Vice Chair for Aspire of WNY. Aspire is an organization that works with children and adults with developmental disabilities to help them realize their full potential and live as independently as possible. She has humbly served this board for over 9 years and is honored to help support the amazing people and families that rely on Aspire. Jen also previously served as the Vice President of the Buffalo Executives Association.

In addition, Jen is a Girl Scout co-leader to 8 glorious, spunky 13-14 year old tweens!

Marie Patton, NAWIC, National Association of Women in Construction, Buffalo Niagara Chapter 3

Marie Patton, Vice President
Active Workforce

Marie is the Director of Operations & Safety at Active Workforce, Inc. and has worked in the Construction Industry for 20+ years both in administrative and field positions. Aside from managing business operations at Active Workforce, she teaches OSHA in Construction courses for their clients, as well as for local non-profit training programs (SACRA at Assembly House, Catholic Charities and BPS Adult Education) which helps with soft skills and mock interviews.


Marie currently sits on the Building Trades and Construction Advisory Boards for Erie 1 BOCES high school and post graduate programs, where she also performs mock interviews for graduating classes, and assists with job placement in the construction sector.

Megan Kreher, Treasurer 

RP Oak Hill

Megan is serving her third term on the chapter board and has worked diligently as our Membership Chair for the past few years. Megan has been on the board since the chapter chartered in 2020 and looks forward to our goal to inch toward 100 members!

Megan has worked in the construction industry for almost 7 years. She started as an intern at RP Oak Hill while in college, growing her career until she was promoted to Project Manager. In addition to her daily duties, Megan also helps in the estimating department, and was on RP Oak Hill’s Safety Committee for 3 years. 

Megan has a 1-year-old daughter, Kayley, who is amazing; as well as 2 dogs, Bessi and Moses!

Michelle Gerace, Recording Secretary
JW Danforth

Michelle has been in the construction industry for more than 30 years, and this is her fourth term on the chapter board. She has extensive experience in many facets of the industry, having started her career in the field and continuing it in various leadership capacities. Michelle currently works for JW Danforth, where she leads the Regional Service Sales and Operations Teams in the areas of plumbing, HVAC, filtration, and environmental services.  Michelle is responsible for optimizing the business and driving growth.

Michelle previously had key roles in both local and global companies that focused on construction, energy management and building automation, electrical systems, and mechanical service. She was on the leadership team for a large global company implementing process improvements and managing field technicians, engineers, and service teams. Michelle was also part of the Town of Wheatfield Business Development team and the Membership Committee for Buffalo Niagara Sales & Marketing Executives. She is a Certified Energy Manager and Certified Demand-Side Management Professional.

Michelle attended UB where she earned a BS in Marketing of Technology and AAS in Business.  She also holds an Electronic Technology degree.  Michelle is a proud veteran of the U.S. Air Force and served on the USAFR Color Guard.

Lynsey Ross, NAWIC, National Association of Women in Construction, Buffalo Niagara Chapter 3

Lynsey Ross, Corresponding Secretary
Christa Construction

Lynsey has been in the construction industry for going on 9 years. She is currently serving her third year on the chapter board and is part of the Workforce, Nominating and Membership Committees

Lynsey started as an Administrative Assistant for Christa Construction and has since been promoted to a Compliance Manager, handling all the MWBE, SDVOB and Section 3 reporting for the various funding entities on a number of projects. She is also learning the skills and responsibilities that go with becoming an Assistance Project Manager, and hopes to one day become a Project Manager herself.

Jillian Penkin, NAWIC, National Association of Women in Construction, Buffalo Niagara Chapter 3

Jillian Penkin, Parliamentarian
RD Weis 

Jillian has been in the construction industry for about 14 years. She is currently an Account Executive with RD Weis, a commercial flooring contractor.

Jillian has served NAWIC for over 12 years, first in Rochester and now proudly in Buffalo. She is the founder and backbone of the NAWIC Buffalo Niagara chapter and previously served as our President. She currently sits on all chapter committees.

Jillian also served on the board of the Women’s Foundation of Genesee Valley and the Women’s Council, specifically the Young Women of Distinction Committee.

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