Women in A/E/C Leadership

November 12, 2019
11:30 AM - 1:30 PM

Twenty Eight Restaurant and Bar (in Google Center)
19530 Jamboree Rd
Irvine, CA 92612
Venue website

Program Description

Join us to hear from some of the top female A/E/C leaders in Southern California as they discuss their careers and what led them to their current leadership roles. At this roundtable event, each of our client and industry panelists will spend time with groups of our attendees, answering the questions you want to ask. After our roundtable time is through, we will open the floor so you can network and continue your conversations with our panelists.

Panel Members

Julie Lyons
Assistant Director
Orange County Public Works Department

Julie Lyons was recently appointed to serve as Assistant Director of the Customer Services branch at Orange County Public Works (OCPW). Ms. Lyons has over three decades of experience in the public sector, working in a variety of positions at the city of Anaheim before joining the OCPW team as the Deputy Director of Administrative Services in 2018. In her role as Assistant Director, Ms. Lyons will oversee five service areas including, OC Development Services, OC Facilities Design & Construction, OC Facilities Maintenance & Central Utility Facility, OC Fleet Services, and Administrative Services. Ms. Lyons holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science from California State University-Fullerton as well as a Master’s in Public Administration from the same. She is also a Certified Building Official and is a Facilities Management Professional as recognized by the International Facility Management Association (IFMA). She has been an active member of the American Public Works Association for the past decade and looks forward to continuing her contributions in her new role.

Jamie Lai
Public Works Director/City Engineer
City of Yorba Linda

Jamie Lai has recently joined the City of Yorba Linda as their Director of Public Works and City Engineer. She has over 20 years’ experience in the public and private sector and has a diverse public works background in project management, development services, entitlements, traffic, transportation, roadway and freeway design, transit facilities planning, operation & maintenance, and infrastructure. Jamie is focused on excellent customer service and working as a team to achieve results. She is excited to join the City of Yorba Linda and serve its residents and community. The City has many exciting projects such as their recent Yorba Linda Town Center development and the upcoming completion of their Public Library and Cultural Arts Center.

Prior to joining Yorba Linda, Jamie worked with the City of Anaheim, Orange County Public Works, and the private engineering sector. She received both her Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering and a Master’s degree in Civil Engineering, specializing in Transportation Planning, from the University of California, Irvine. She is a licensed Professional Civil Engineer in the state of California.

Melissa Dugan
Supervising Transportation Planner
City of Irvine

Melissa leads the Transportation Planning and Project Development group for the City of Irvine. A graduate of Cal State Long Beach, Melissa began her career in the A/E/C industry as an administrative and marketing professional.  She quickly grew into a technical Project Manager and served as a consultant to various clients, including both the private and public sectors. As a City employee, Melissa now works on the other side of the table - completing RFPs, scoring proposals, and leading interview panels. She brings unique insight, industry experience, and relentless energy to all of her roles.

Anne Bretaña
Principal and Studio Director

With more than 25 years of design experience, Anne Bretaña serves as a Financial Service Firms Practice Area Leader. She is an analytical thinker who is passionate about using her design background and research skills to create workplaces that improve the employee experience. Anne leads a diverse range of projects across many industries including financial services, technology, professional services, and corporate campuses, and works closely with world-class clients such as CBRE, Jones Day, Harbor Distributing, Smashbox Studios, PIMCO, and Broadcom. Anne is committed to thoughtful, research-based problem solving that supports business goals, as well as creating communications programs that effectively deliver project vision and messaging. Known to peers and clients as a thought leader, she is also passionate about actively mentoring the next generation of talent. Anne earned her Bachelor of Arts at the University of Kentucky.

Donna Bloom-Crook
Vice President, Southern California Client Development Leader

Donna brings  25 years’ experience in the A/E industry. She is responsible for business development and marketing for the Southern California Water Business Group (WBG) program (Los Angeles, San Diego, Long  Beach, Riverside, Pasadena, Orange County, and Ventura). The multi-million dollar program includes wastewater, water resource management, drinking water, and federal water. Donna has also served in a regional role leading the strategy development and positioning for large water infrastructure projects in the West. Prior to working at HDR Engineering, Donna was a small business owner where she served as the executive director for numerous non-profit water resource organizations throughout the country.

Christine Arbogast, PE
Unit President
Tetra Tech

Christine is President of Tetra Tech’s Solid Waste West operating unit, and has 35 years of solid waste planning, permitting, and engineering management experience. She has assisted metropolitan and rural communities throughout North America to navigate the full life-cycle of solid waste systems and facility development. This has ranged from initial strategic planning and permitting to design and construction of state-of-the-art solid waste facilities, to facility closure, post-closure maintenance, and redevelopment. Christine’s recent work has focused on helping solid waste system operators meet new regulatory requirements for the diversion of organic waste from landfills and the establishment of financially- and environmentally-sustainable solid waste management practices. This has included assessment of waste diversion and organics management programs, renewable energy programs, and community-based food waste recycling programs. Christine holds a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, and is a California registered civil engineer.


Domains covered

  • Domain 3: Client and Business Development
  • Domain 6: Management


Key Take-Aways

  • How to advance your career in the A/E/C industry
  • Strategies to apply to your day-to-day work
  • Deeper insight into success factors from women in leadership roles


$300.00 Event Sponsor (Includes 2 Registrations)

$45.00 Member

$45.00 Member not from Orange County

$80.00 Non-Member

$0.00 Annual Sponsor Member Representative

$0.00 Annual Sponsor Non-Member Representative