SRI Commemorates Women’s Impact: Honoring Women’s History Month

We foster environments where women can innovate, lead, and contribute.

March is Women’s History Month, an opportunity to acknowledge the contributions made by women who are making a difference. In recognition, we’re honoring the women of SRI, whose cutting-edge work and dedication continue to power global innovation in science, technology, education, and business. Here we offer a glimpse of just a few of those women, each of whom describes her role at SRI, her thoughts on working in STEM and beyond, and her advice to women who are considering their life’s work.

Anna Angonese

I’m a project manager at SRI, where as part of the Future Concepts division I help ensure our projects are planned to budget and staffed correctly. I meet with lead researchers monthly to review project financials and to resolve any issues that may impact their progress. I really enjoy this work; it’s fascinating to learn about the futuristic nature of SRI’s work.

Prior to joining, I worked at various STEM companies, and I’ve seen a lack of women in engineering roles. Diversity in these positions is vital to innovation. The good news is that there is a wide range of careers in STEM, and it’s an exciting time to be involved. I encourage women in STEM to look for internships in their area of expertise, and then speak with someone in that field to learn more. It’s never too early to start to build a professional network.

Shawna Jacobs

I’m a senior talent acquisition advisor. I love meeting new people daily and being a matchmaker of sorts as I find great talent and introduce them to the people at SRI. The absolute best feeling is when I can assist candidates and hiring managers through the recruitment and hiring process. One of the challenges of this sort of career is gaining trust from hiring managers. Establishing trust in any relationship takes time, patience, and understanding, but once it’s gained, a great partnership will follow. My advice to young women professionally is to always show up as your authentic self. Bring your knowledge, experience, and passion to work with you every day.

Jessica de Paula Tadeu Medrado

I’m a research scientist dedicated to developing technologies to accelerate society’s shift toward a fossil-free economy. I work in the Hardware Research and Technology Lab in the Future Concepts division to create solutions that help us better understand the importance of clouds in the atmosphere, the generation of clean hydrogen, and CO2 capture. I love that I work in a place full of incredible minds and generous spirits, and I take pride in being part of a team that is exceptionally supportive of each other. Progress is being made toward gender bias in STEM, but persistent challenges exist.

Throughout my career, I have occasionally been unfairly viewed as less credible an engineer, researcher, and scientist than my male peers. I try to navigate these moments using patience and endurance. I advise young women in STEM to practice being unaffected by judgment. It can be hard and unfair, but crucial to personal and professional development. Surround yourself with a supportive network. Allies do exist, and they’ll help you become a new example for society that will encourage more women to thrive in this field.

Tina Li

I work as part of SRI’s Contracts Strategic Services Team, which provides the administrative support necessary to keep our contracts, subcontracts, and procurement awards in compliance. In that role, I manage a group of contract assistants who support the team to keep our operations running seamlessly. I love our daily interactions discussing tasks or handling specific situations, which often includes coordinating beyond our immediate groups. In the end, a team effort is needed to accomplish our work. I’ve been fortunate throughout my career at SRI to have inspiring female mentors as role models.

They’ve encouraged me to provide input and suggestions, which gives me confidence that my contributions make a difference. I’d suggest that women entering or working in STEM try to give their best effort, even if that means having to do something multiple times. Patience and persistence, along with a positive view of work, life, and family, can help you accomplish small steps, which lead to accomplishing even bigger goals.

These and many other women serve as inspiring role models, paving the way for future generations of women in their fields. Their stories remind us of the ongoing need for equality, representation, and support for women and all genders. As we continue to celebrate Women’s History Month, SRI will continue to create environments where people can innovate, lead, and contribute to a more equitable world.

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