These women are positively empowering
GET TO KNOW US
What do mothers, grandmothers, Marie Curie, Amelia Earhart, Ada Lovelace, and Eleanor Roosevelt have in common?
They’re all extraordinary women who inspire some of our own extraordinary women working here at New Fortress Energy.
Traditionally, engineering and energy have been male-dominated spaces. But just as we’re proud to be blazing new trails in powering the world with positive energy, we’re also proud to be shifting that gender dynamic. Our company includes so many remarkable women who are bringing their own positive energy to help shape our company and our industry.
Today, as part of our celebration of Women’s History Month, we’re honored to introduce you to four women who are making their own history – and helping make the world a brighter place – as part of the New Fortress Energy team.
“Empowerment Comes from Within” - Michelle Gramcko, Logistics Manager, Miami, Florida
Michelle Gramcko oversees the logistics of bringing liquefied natural gas (LNG) to help communities enjoy clean, affordable, and reliable energy supplies.
“Coordinating deliveries and managing a team responsible for the logistics behind building a terminal is a challenge that motivates me to grow every day,” Michelle says.
She also appreciates how NFE appreciates her.
“I feel included and appreciated,” she says. “Making sure the company enables and fosters an environment of respect and gratitude is the best practice we can do.”
That’s the attitude she embraces for Women’s History Month, and throughout the year.
“Recognizing women’s empowerment and accomplishments is a testament of how strong we are, and proof that even with barriers and difficulties, we’ve managed to achieve great things,” she says. “Every woman is important to celebrate! And sharing that recognition is the best thing that we can do to celebrate women.”
For Michelle, celebrating women begins at home.
“My role model is my mother, even if it sounds cliché,” she says. “She’s the hardest-working and most committed woman I’ve ever known. She has always been a good example and made sure I was raised to accomplish big things. That’s the same kind of advice I would give other women. I would tell young girls to live and enjoy the present, but to always keep the future in mind! Education and dedication are the best combination for success. And to women in the workplace, I would encourage them to push through barriers and challenges, and never give up on their dreams. Anything that’s worth fighting for won’t be easy. It takes a lot to prepare both intellectually and emotionally to be able to reach your goals and keep setting new ones.”
That’s Michelle’s secret to success as well.
“I put in the time and effort,” she says. “I keep prepared and make sure I’m always learning and growing with the world around me. Empowerment comes from within, and it’s directly influenced by our actions and dedication.”
“Strive to be Better Every Day” - Lexi Yandelil Nava Viurquez, Senior Project Engineer, Mexico
Lexi Nava is the engineering liaison for the construction of our LNG terminal in La Paz, Baja California Sur, Mexico. As she helps forge a future where people everywhere have access to affordable, dependable, clean energy, she is inspired by the past accomplishments of others.
“I’ve always looked up to Marie Curie, because she persevered despite challenges,” Lexi says. “She took the best of every situation and set clear goals, despite the years each one required. She was brave to be alone in difficult situations in foreign countries, and to overcome personal challenges.”
Diving into the stories of people who have come before us fuels Lexi’s commitment to paying forward the advantages their work has afforded her.
“One of the strongest reasons to celebrate Women’s History Month is the privileges that, thanks to the fight of women in history, we have inherited – the gift to decide how we want to shape our lives and to imagine a better future for us all,” she says.
Her passion is tangible – and so is her work to make a difference.
“This month, I am collecting bottle caps to help pay for chemotherapies for children, and collecting toys for kids who have been abandoned,” she says. “It’s a celebration that I had education, that I can learn as much as I can read, and that I always can share with a child in need. There will be always hope. We do not need to have elaborate plans; we only need the willingness to help.”
She also encourages future generations to have that same determination and optimism.
“Embrace the energy and power that comes from falling in love with your goals,” she says. “Don't be afraid to be the first girl on something, the only woman studying that, the first woman to go that far. Dare to break this ceiling and go higher. And then believe that you can continue! Widen the roads for those who come behind. Remember that success is no accident. It is hard work, perseverance, sacrifice, and time – but don’t worry – it also comes with many good friends and great memories if you work with a company like NFE!”
“Be Inspired to Effect Change” - Sasha Lewis, Assistant Project Manager, Jamaica
After earning an NFE scholarship and then graduating from The University of the West Indies in 2018, Sasha joined us as a Project Engineer, and in 2019 was promoted to Assistant Project Manager. She manages the development of six small-scale projects in Jamaica, ensuring that they are on-time, cost-effective, and compliant. She also strives to uplift and encourage others.
“Seeing other people succeed and celebrating their efforts adds moral fiber to my existence,” she says. “There is nothing more empowering. That’s what Women’s History Month represents to me – a period of reflection when the accomplishments of women are highlighted. It is also a period to assess the work that still needs to be done as we aspire to achieve equality in all aspects of life.”
To that end, Sasha emphasizes the importance of developing a shared understanding and language of inclusion in the workplace.
“Highlighting the significant accomplishments by women across a company, and supporting equal pay for men and women in the same capacity, are great ways to promote inclusion and appreciation,” she says. “Additionally, companies that create a culture that discourages harassment are also taking a step in the right direction.”
That’s an important step, not only for females working today, but also for future generations.
“Women’s History Month offers us the opportunity to revisit the lives of outstanding women, and allows younger generations to hear their stories and be inspired to effect change,” Sasha says. “I use the internet to introduce my two younger sisters to women such as Ada Lovelace, Amelia Earhart, and Marie Curie, and what they’ve done to impact society. Young girls such as my sisters are constantly faced with the challenge of seeking validation from others to feel important, but the best advice I have for young girls comes from Eleanor Roosevelt: ‘No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.’ And keep learning. The working world is very dynamic, which creates the capacity for improvement, so it’s essential that such opportunities are explored.”
“Just Go for It” - Shakira Mosquera, Operations and Health, Safety, and Environmental Management Supervisor, Puerto Rico
For Shakira Mosquera, a typical day at NFE could include anything from environmental compliance, health and safety implementation, logistics, vessel receipt, and distribution, to supervising and leading diverse teams.
“I feel empowered when I help coworkers succeed or improve themselves,” Shakira says. “I often try to recognize work well done, even when it is a colleague that I do not supervise.”
That’s the kind of barrier-free thinking that drives Shakira’s approach to business, and also to women’s issues.
“I don’t like special treatment, especially if it is because I’m a woman,” she says. “I like to be treated and considered as equal among colleagues. And I don’t want young girls to perceive the idea that our fight is a competition of gender, on who is better or stronger. My advice for young girls is to understand that every person is valuable, and that each one of us has unique qualities and capabilities that we can use to thrive on every task. We must always aim to improve ourselves each day. Don’t let others make you think differently.”
Shakira has found strength and support for her aspirations and approach through the example set in her own family tree.
“The way my grandmother, Gregoria Centeno, experienced struggles and surpassed obstacles is worthy of admiration,” she says. “With only an eighth-grade education, and having worked since she was 8 years old, she taught me how to stand up for myself, value myself, and be accountable for my decisions. She is a strong and yet sweet woman.”
Shakira aims to share that same determination with other businesswomen.
“Don’t be afraid to work in an area that is usually considered as a man’s world,” she counsels. “Just go for it. If you don’t succeed at a certain time, keep on trying. You will get there. My key for success is to be humble, respect others, listen carefully, and speak up at the right moments.”