Last week, NPR published an in-depth report on the state of diversity in oil and gas.
"The U.S. oil industry is trying to find a new generation of workers in a country that is becoming more diverse. But a history of sexism and racism is making that difficult. The oil industry has struggled to solve its diversity problem despite having some big advantages. It's a wealthy industry accustomed to taking on complicated challenges (think deep-water offshore drilling and fracking). And oil and gas companies already have decades of experience operating all over the world in various environments. Still, the diversity problem persists..."
Correspondent Jeff Brady interviewed Pink Petro CEO and founder Katie Mehnert, among others for the piece and asked her specifically about what inspired her to launch Pink Petro. She told him about a fortuitous encounter she had while traveling for work.
"A gentleman next to me said, 'What's a pretty young lady like you doing in a dark, dangerous business like oil?'" Mehnert says that she was too stunned to say anything at the time but that the experience changed the course of her career. She started a business called Pink Petro— an online community — and a career site for women in the oil industry.
Thank you to NPR and Jeff Brady for digging into the energy industry's inclusion problem. Awareness is half the battle because awareness is the first step on the way to action.
Click here to read the full report.