“Laura is a constant on our team, and we would not function the same without her,” shared Victor Marshall, Operations Manager for Kent Companies’ Dallas-based commercial division. “She is our right hand, and everyone knows we can count on her no matter the task or timeline.” He’s talking about Laura Mendias, a young professional who is taking bold steps forward in her construction career at Kent Companies.
Laura Mendias joined the Kent Companies team in 2018 as a Human Resources Assistant, and each move in her career is marked by her desire to learn, improve, and contribute to her team. Her first role at Kent Companies focused on administrative support. Laura took initiative to earn an HR Generalist certificate and was quickly promoted. As an HR Generalist, she made Kent’s people-focused mission part of her work every day. A native Spanish-speaker, Laura bridged language barriers for teammates who needed help understanding their benefits and company resources. Laura quickly proved herself to be a self-starter and trusted resource.
“My experience in HR taught me what it takes to care for our people and be a resource to them,” shared Laura. “And I learned from the very best. Tanya Escobedo (Kent Companies HR Manager) was a great mentor to me. She’s a true powerhouse in a male-dominated industry and is widely respected by everyone on our team. She inspired me to continue growing my career.”
In 2022, Laura made the move to the operations side of the business. She transferred to the commercial division as an Assistant Project Manager, a nod to her family’s legacy in commercial concrete. Laura’s father, Francisco Barragan, was a highly-respected Kent Companies superintendent.
Today, Laura’s duties include facilitating communication between project managers and the field team; coordinating resources; and managing administrative and financial details to keep projects on track. “I see Laura’s work benefit our team at all levels,” added Marshall. “She has a bright future in concrete, and I’m excited to see how her skills and experience grow from here.”
Laura is setting her sights on growing into a project management role in the future. “I’m proud that I’ve been able to accomplish anything I’ve put my mind to. I’ve been building my own path and conquering it each step of the way. I look forward to learning more and expanding my career.”
Laura’s advice for others in early and mid-career phases: “It’s important to be a sponge and take in every bit of information that comes your way. Get your hands on any opportunity you can and use it to learn and grow your own path forward.”
Laura Mendias is a nominee for the 2023 LUNA Awards Outstanding Professional of the Year in Dallas, Texas. This award, presented by the Regional Hispanic Contractors Association, acknowledges outstanding female professionals in the AEC Industry.