Does that quote sound familiar? I think nearly everyone in the restoration industry can attest it was hard work that got them to where they are today. Or, they’re working hard now with their eyes fixed firmly on the prize – whether that be ownership, management, or… retirement.

Since joining R&R last April, I’ve had the privilege of meeting many intelligent and successful people in the restoration and remediation industry. With that, there has been no shortage of strong, driven women in the mix.

Lisa Lavender, COO of Berks Fire Water and the Restoration Technical Institute, writes about leadership and business management regularly for R&R's website. She knows how to think outside the box. For example, in November she discussed ways to build a culture of safety through incentives and even a little fun to maintain a top-notch safety record. 

Lisa Cordasco is a second generation restoration business owner. She took over Crystal Restoration from her father and reinvented the business as New Crystal Restoration in 2008. While holding firmly to her dad’s passion to help others, Cordasco has morphed the traditional restoration business into a “green” company using only earth-friendly, non-toxic products and cleaning methods. They also have specific plans to care for people with special needs such as the elderly, children with autism, allergy sufferers, and much more. Her methods are getting her noticed far outside Westchester, NY.

Plus, there’s Annissa Coy. Surely most of you have watched some of her weekly video columns on our website. She knows her stuff! As co-creator of Mobile Cleaning Systems and Firehouse Education, Coy can talk about contents cleaning for days – whether it is an antique painting or a vinyl window.
These three women are just a small portion of a long list of fierce, fiery women in restoration. R&R wants to recognize women rising in the ranks of restoration companies! 

Here’s how it works. Any woman who has been in the restoration industry a decade or more is eligible.

So ladies, now through May 31, head to and answer six questions about you, your experience, and achievements. Share some photos or other supporting documents you may have. A panel of industry peers will take a careful look at all the submissions, and choose several to be featured in the October issue of R&R.

Do you know someone who you feel deserves to be recognized for their work? Encourage her to fill out a profile form!

If you have any questions, please feel free to email me at

Michelle Blevins