We had the good fortune of connecting with Liz Mahlow and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Liz, what do you attribute your success to?
I think having a genuine passion for the work you do coupled with a supportive work environment is a must to be able to consistently deliver quality work. As a company, we have been committed to supporting our staff and making an effort to consult on meaningful community projects since the beginning. We attribute our growth and success to our engaged team, our collaborative approach with clients, and the quality of our work.
What should our readers know about your business?
One thing that separates us from our competitors is our ability to work through theoretical concepts and ideas that often include complex shapes and forms. My partners and I have been lecturers, professors and advisors at universities and architectural institutions all across LA. I think we have this academic approach to structural engineering – an intellectual curiosity regarding how to make the design vision a reality. This approach is persistent in everything we do and carries through from mentoring staff to the education of clients on building performance outcomes. We have worked on hospital and school projects in Africa, low income housing in LA, large scale seismic retrofits, new construction, and a number of large-scale art pieces like something you would find at the Coachella music festival. Each of these project types has vastly different objectives and challenges. Although the solutions will be different, we find that the same communication and principals are a common thread.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
My first little one just turned a year old. You could say managing a remote team and learning to be a mom kicked my butt, in a good way, this past year…. At the moment, I feel a glass of wine in the back yard with close friends would be perfect. Leaving 2020 quarantine behind (hopefully soon), I would stay local with visitors in the downtown and north/ east LA neighborhood for nights out. It’s fun to show people the neighborhood and that freeway interchanges are not required. Bestia, Bar Ama, Highland Park Brewery were some favorite goto spots. Cocktails at The Exchange were easy walking distance from the office and always fun.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Absolutely, there are so many people to thank and give credit for where I am today. Of course, my parents have always been supportive and have always made me believe there were no limits.
When I was coming up through the ranks in the profession, there really weren’t women role models in leadership positions (that I knew of) in the structural engineering field at large, nor the companies where I worked. However, I do recognize and I am beyond grateful, for the women who came before me. Without those who have worked so hard for equality, pay parity, and a seat at the table, my career wouldn’t be what it is today.
Many of the clients and collaborators of Nous, are women-led businesses. All of these women who are actively shifting standards, changing mindsets (mine included) and disrupting the status quo, deserve recognition and credit in my narrative! Sitting in meetings with architecture rock stars like Sara Lorenzen, Jenifer Luce and Barbara Bestor in the early days after co-founding Nous showed me what leadership can look like in the industry. It was so exciting to see women running the show and actually championing other females at the table rather than the old mentality that women needed to compete for space there. It has been very important to me in recent years is to give back to the community of professional women and support various organizations such as the American Institute of Architects’ Women in Architecture (WIA) Committee and the Structural Engineering Association’s Women in Structural Engineering (WiSE) Committee in order to empower and positive change for women in the field and promote the next generation of women leaders.
Linkedin: Nous Engineering
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Personal photo credit to: Jamie Arrigo