Three organizations working to bolster women in skilled trades are joining forces to host the ‘She Shed Collective’ at the 2023 SEMA Show, the groups announced.
While creating a space within SEMA Show to build community that encourages and empowers women, the collaboration aims to showcase how vital and growing tradeswomen are within the automotive industry, members of the collective said.
Supported by Girl Gang Garage, the Jessi Combs Foundation and Real Deal Revolution, the She Shed will operate throughout the week of the SEMA Show with hands-on workshops, expert panels, autograph sessions, and an on-site tattoo artist.
The She Shed Collective will be located at booth No. 24663 Central Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center. Additionally, a She Shed Collective press conference will be held Tue., Oct. 31 at 1 p.m. in the booth. An after-hours reception for women in the industry will be held Tue., Oct. 31 from 6:00-9:00 p,.m. at Las Vegas Marriott, the group said.
“If you can see it, you can be it,” said Bogi Latiner of Girl Gang Garage. The She Shed will highlight tradeswomen, from professionals to hobbyists, while also showcasing three women-built vehicles. “We want women to walk away energized and inspired knowing that there’s space and support for them in the automotive industry,” said Theresa Contreras of Real Deal Revolution. “We also want men to recognize the many ways in which they can and do support us.” Tradeswomen make up just 2% of automotive tradespeople, but there is plenty of evidence that the number is growing, in part due to the work Girl Gang Garage, The Jessi Combs Foundation, and Real Deal Revolution have been doing.
“Women working in the trades are trailblazers growing the industry, and that can be a lonely position to be in, ” said Dana Wilke of The Jessi Combs Foundation. “We’re collaborating to show women that they’re not alone, there’s someone else who understands them and is there to support them.” The She Shed will feature women of all generations, from young rising stars to industry veterans. “Seeing and experiencing the joy and meaning of connection is when people’s perception of why it matters is transformed,” said Theresa Contreras of Real Deal Revolution.
“When we work together is when we’re the most powerful,” said Bogi Latiner of Girl Gang Garage. “It’s why we’re coming together as three organizations and it’s also why we all do what we do—there’s power in women coming together.” The goal is that the She Shed will continue to grow and become a recurring staple within the SEMA Show. It’s a place for women to connect and also a testament to the impact women have within the automotive industry and skilled trades.