DJC Names Three Otak Employees to OR Women of Vision 2021
Otak is proud to announce that three team members have been named as honorees to the Daily Journal of Commerce OR Women of Vision 2021. Tanya Boyer, Rachel Laura, and Cathy Kraus join more than 40 other women across Oregon and Southwest Washington who are being recognized for the work they do in shaping our built environment. Their leadership, mentoring efforts, promotion of industry diversity, and community involvement have helped shine a bright light on our industry.
As a marketing manager for Otak’s Portland and SW Washington offices, Tanya Boyer’s dedication to developing marketing and business development processes to bring work through the door, coupled with driving these practices, is paramount in Otak’s successes. During her time at Otak, Tanya has overseen the development and implementation of WinMap, a detailed approach to marketing and business development that empowers our various practice areas to cultivate stronger business relationships with current and prospective clients.
Tanya is also involved in the community, taking the tutelage and guidance received by some amazing female mentors of hers during the early stages of her career, and passing that forward. One of the ways she has done this is through her involvement with the Society for Marketing Professional Services (SMPS). Tanya is currently the leader of the SMPS Mentorship Roundtable for the Portland chapter, a program that pairs experienced marketing professionals with new marketers, allowing the new marketers to expand their professional network, access a broad range of marketing information, and interact with industry colleagues. Both as the leader and a mentor in this program, Tanya has had many mentees, all of whom say that she was very invested and committed to their success.
Rachel Laura, PMP, is known for wearing many “hats” at Otak, including those of senior accounting manager, Deltek (ERP) administrator, and as a leader of our internal project management office. Rachel’s dedication to her community is coupled with her unwavering commitment to Otak, culminating in her involvement with many charitable events through the years, including several events that raised money for local-area nonprofits and the Oregon Food Bank. Rachel is also a talented landscape painter who volunteers with the Tolovana Arts Colony, a local non-profit whose mission is to provide affordable, year-round arts-related education, inspiration, and cultural programming.
As senior manager of the project accounting team, Rachel’s efforts play an integral role in the everyday financial function of Otak. In addition to these day-to-day responsibilities, Rachel has also taken on the role of project manager for Otak’s enterprise resource planning system upgrade, taking ownership of a huge endeavor that aims to put systems and processes in place to streamline Otak’s capabilities and enhance our service delivery to clients.
Senior project manager, Cathy Kraus, is often recognized for her holistic leadership approach, regular advocacy for staff, and for being a proponent of equity and inclusion. Her empathy, leadership, and psychological safety practices promoting deeper trust and collaboration were evident on two projects for the Vancouver Clinic where she worked alongside ZGF Architects and Andersen Construction to deliver two award-winning projects. Cathy’s authentic and genuine leadership style supported the team’s collective approach for calmly and collaboratively navigating the impacts of the pandemic midway through a 12-month construction program, completing the project five weeks early and under budget, while also accommodating late program changes, converting two exam rooms into negatively pressurized rooms for the treatment of infectious diseases like COVID-19.
Springing from her recent project experiences, Cathy has been researching the elements of high functioning teams and the benefits of psychological safety in related work. As a result, she has been invited to share her research at this year’s AIA Seattle Architecture for Health Spring Conference, Oregon, and Idaho Chapters of the Society for Healthcare Engineering Fall Conferences, as well as write an article for AIA’s annual Academy of Architecture for Health publication. Cathy also enjoys opportunities to serve as a guest reviewer for Portland State University’s Architecture 120 Students’ final projects.
Honorees will be recognized at the DJC Women of Vision event to be held Thursday, October 28 from 4:00 to 8:00 pm at the Oregon Zoo.