After hearing the four women in the panel at our annual meeting on last month, I started thinking about the emergence of women in the energy industry. The industry has definitely seen a change when it comes to the influence of women in energy. I started thinking about how much things have progressed in the last 15, 10 and even 5 years.
With a little bit of help from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), I was able to answer my questions on women in the energy industry. The earliest information available is from 2003 and the most recent is from 2014. To give a little bit more background the BLS describes the utilities industry as establishments engaged in the provision of the following utility services: electric power, natural gas, steam supply, water supple and sewage removal.
- Number of women in the utilities industry: 250,000
- Percent of women in electric power generation, transmission and distribution: 23.6%
- Percent of women in electric and gas: 20.9%
- Number of women in the utilities industry: 238,000
- Percent of women in electric power generation, transmission and distribution: 19.3%
- Percent of women in electric and gas:26.2%
- Number of women in the utilities industry: 268,000
- Percent of women in electric power generation, transmission and distribution: 23.3%
- Percent of women in electric and gas: 29.8%
While the total number of women working in utilities doesn’t seem like it has grown all that much in the past 11 years, there is a significant change when comparing 2009 to 2014 – when women comprised nearly one-third of the energy industry workers. In fact, from 2009 to 2014 the number of women in utilities grew 12.6 percent which is more than 3x the national average! This is especially impressive when you consider that the average percent change per year for women in the work force is just .7%.
I am proud to report that 32 percent of MISO employees are female (7 percent higher than the national average for utilities!)
MISO also provides opportunities for employees to connect through various programs focused on diversity and inclusion including:
- National Forum for Black Public Administrators
- The American Association of Blacks in Energy®
- Arkansas Legislative Black Caucus
- Arkansas Women in Power
- Gulf Coast Power Association Women’s Initiative
MISO recognizes that being the most reliable, value-creating RTO demands diversity by way of thought, talent and background. And it’s the reason we champion diversity through our recruiting and internship practices and through our community outreach programs and supplier diversity initiatives.
If you are interested in working for or with us, visit our website to learn more about our open positions and our supplier engagement practices. And if you liked this story, drop us a comment to let us know!